• Register

Information for users from the old Q&A site
If you have an account from our old Q&A site, your account was transferred over, but you need to reset your password and confirm your email address.
Reset Password here
Confirm Email here

2,176 questions

3,807 answers


29,416 users

How do you know where to look for stones?

0 votes
I live in Maine, and there are plenty of mountains.  What makes some likely to have gemstones and others not?  And where do you look for stones when you're at one of the places that has them?
asked Jul 8, 2018 by sabr (120 points)

1 Answer

0 votes
Tectonics, volcanoes, mountains, oceans, beaches, erosion, lakes and rivers. Where to start? Mines and gravel pits. Mines have slag heaps and tailings. When they are mining copper for instance....they are not looking for malachite or thompsonite or agates. Beaches feature lots of rocks. The waves erode them and some of the minerals get exposed. You have mountains. Rivers and melt water expose underlying minerals. Gravel pits expose rock, did it up and pulverise it. There are mountains of rock in one place.

I live in a rock paradise. There are not many gems but I have been to exposed fault lines where there are gems in the rock and you can chip them out. The copper mines have been worked for millennia. I have dug for specimens  in the tailing heaps, I have walked the beaches looking for them. Alluvial flows from glaciers deposited them. If you learn how to spot them you can find gems there.

Nice place to start would be your local rock shop, a university, a mineral club or type in gems in Maine into your browser. Great thing is you get out and look for what you like.

answered Jul 9, 2018 by Weasel (56,700 points)