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Virgin Valley's

Opal Negra Mine

We just set up a page on Facebook especially for the Opal Negra Mine

 

 

 

 

Our mine, the Opal Negra*, is in the Northwest corner of Nevada, more specifically - Virgin Valley, one of the premiere opal sites in the United States.

* Spanish for Black Opal, the Nevada State gemstone

     
 

"Magnifica"

 

 


  plucking one from the bank  

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There's more to Virgin Valley than opal!

warm spring at campground

 

There are more than 21 wetland ponds on the valley floor, including this warm spring swimming hole at the no-fee campground.

 
  • Petrified wood is found in abundance, some being beautifully opalized.  Occasionally pieces of Virgin Valley wood, complete with bark are recovered from the deposits.  More rarely opalized cones, some showing spectacular fire, can be found.
  • There is a gem quality carnelian (red agate) site just to the North of the turn off from highway 140.  The carnelian can be found loose in the float below the rhyolite out-croppings where it formed.  The more adventurous can attack the seams and cracks in the rhyolite with chisels and hammers.  Just be mindful that there are limits to how much material you can take per day.
  • A side trip to Plush, Oregon for sunstone is very nearly a must.  You can fee dig at the Dust Devil Mine, a major producer,  or you can try your luck in the free area that the Bureau of Land Management set aside for rock hounds (hand tools only).  You can view a short Utube video about the Dust Devil here.
  • Hampton Butte, famous for its green petrified wood, is another day trip well worth taking.
  • The top of Thousand Creek Gorge, featuring sheer drops in excess of 800' is only a few miles from the campground.  With a high clearance vehicle you can drive right to the edge.
  • For Hikers; a section of the Immigrant Trail runs through the Sheldon.  There is a virtual tour of the Applegate-Lassen Cut-Off here.  If you want to know more about the Applegate Trail, we suggest this book available at amazon.com

 

 More Virgin Valley places and scenes here.

 



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