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About Fire Opal:

Mohs Hardness: 5.5 – 6.5
Density: 1.98 – 2.50
Composition: Hydrous silicon dioxide (SiO2· nH2O)

Fire Opal is unlike any other opal. While most opals are renowned for the play of color and reflections from within, Fire Opal is named for its fiery colors, including yellows, oranges, and reds. It may or may not show an opalescent "play of color", but is valued mostly for its intense colors.

The best qualities of fire opal are very transparent. Most fire opal is cut in sparkling faceted stones, though you may also find it cut en-cabochon, in spheres, and in carvings.

Opal typically contains from 3 to 30 percent water, making it very sensitive to every kind of stress.

Fire opal is no exception to this rule, and should be protected against impact as well as drastic changes of humidity and temperature.

Fire opal is becoming much more popular in jewelry due to its impressive range of bright intense colors. It is also very light in weight compared to other gems, so it is ideal for producing stunning larger earrings and pendants without burdening the lucky wearer.

You should never put any kind of opal into harsh cleaning fluids or in ultrasonic cleaners.

Juniper Ridge Opal 2014 Mining Season Closed!

The Juniper Ridge Opal Mine 2014 fee digging season is closed!



Last fall right before the mine closed we managed to do a few things to get ready for this year. With help from some good friends we cleared away several tons of overburden. Using heavy equipment we enlarged the parking area around the pit, cleared out a lot of the loose material in the bottom, and expanded the pit quite a bit. This operation uncovered several new Opal veins with spectacular material in them, and made acces to some existing veins much easier!

All of the material we cleared out and knocked off the pit sides was dumped straight into our tailings pile and there was huge amounts of Opal in there. Just working the tailings this year will pay off big for those that want to crawl over them and do some surface collecting or some very light work with a rock hammer!



This seasons reservations already coming in so pick your dates now! You don't want to miss this years best opportunity to get some great material from the Juniper Ridge Opal mine!


To learn more about fee-digging at our serene and scenic mining retreat high in the mountains of South Eastern Oregon, click here >>> Fee Digging at the Juniper Ridge Opal Mine!

To reserve your digging dates -->> CLICK HERE


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