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Quartz Crystals

A Mount Ida crystal

The ancient Ouachita Mountain area of Arkansas was considered a mystical location by Native American tribes. The hot and cold springs in the "Valley of the Vapors" (now the city of Hot Springs) was considered a place of peace for even warring tribes. Shaman traveled to "power points" in the mountains where the earth's energy was said to be the strongest, and the beautiful Arkansas quartz of the Ouachitas were believed to have sacred and spiritual significance.

The World's Finest Quartz Crystals

Geologists say that Arkansas and Brazil have the best quality quartz in the world, and today rockhounds, families and tourists from all over the world head for the Hot Springs and Mount Ida area to go prospecting in the abundant Quartz Crystal deposits of the Ouachitas. Whether you are interested in mining for your own crystals in a "dig-your-own" mine or would prefer to find the perfect crystal in one of the many Rock and Gem shops in the area, you will surely treasure the natural beauty and "energy" of your own Ouachita Quartz Crystal.

Dig-your-own Crystal Mines

Crystal mines - Arkansas crystals

Crystal mines – Arkansas crystals

Many "dig-your-own" crystal mines are in the Ouachitas with most of them located in the small Ouachita Mountain hamlet of Mount Ida, the Quartz Crystal Capital of the World.  Additional mines are found in Mena, Jessieville, and Story. The mines consist of pits and exposed hillsides where backhoes and bulldozers have removed the soil and clay in search of the quartz veins that run through these ancient mountains. Whether you are a beginning digger or an experienced rockhound, you are sure to find a spot at the various mines well suited for you.

At some crystal mines, there are areas where crystals are literally lying on the ground and all you have to do is pick them up. Often the only equipment needed is a screwdriver or a small garden tool to loosen the dirt and a bucket to hold the Arkansas crystals. For avid rockhounds, there are also spots where experience and patience are needed along with a crowbar or chisel. Regardless of the area you dig in, it is best to wear old clothes and shoes because you will get dirty. Although most crystal mines allow people to dig for crystals year-round, the best time of year to mine is during the spring and fall when temperatures are cool.

For those who like Arkansas crystals, but don't want to dig their own, there are numerous rock shops in Hot Springs and the Ouachitas.