Idaho Collecting Sites

Emerald Creek near Clarkia, Idaho


Source: Rocks-and-Fossils Mailing list 6/2/95
Tim Fisher

Why, Emerald Creek, of course! There are others, but if its big star garnets you want, Emerald's it! The "official" diggings are your best bet. To get there find Route 8 from Moscow or Route 3 from Coeur d'Alene. From 8, take 3 N to Clarkia. From 3, go to FS rd. 447 N of Clarkia. The diggings are on 447 a couple miles past the Emerald Creek CG. Lanny, do you know when they are open? It used to be 9 to 6 or something like that, every day except Sunday. The permit was $5.00.

Source: Rocks-and-Fossils Mailing List 6/2/95
Lanny R. Ream

Amazing how these things work out. I picked up a current brochure from the FS a week ago just in case I needed it, and gave it to a friend this morning! So, all I can tell you is the permit is now $10 and I think they opened on Memorial Day weekend, you are probably right about the daily hours.

And while I have everyone's ears and eyes, please don't propagate that erroneous information about star garnets only being found at Emerald Creek, Idaho and in India. It just isn't true. They can be found at many sites from Emerald Creek for about 40 miles easterly and southeasterly, and at Sloan Creek in Washington (although they are not as good quality). The Idaho localities mentioned above produce material from as good as Emerald Creek to better and worse. Most of the better ones are on FS acquired land and not open to collecting, others are on open FS land but people show me specimens but keep the sites secret. I have found a few but they don't produce very good gems. For crystals, there are a lot of sites, just drive the roads and hike the ridges and you can find them from sharp crystals 1/4 inch across to large ugly granular crystals bigger than a softball.

... what type of garnets? Gem, facet, cab or crystal specimens? I do know a few other garnet spots in Idaho, depends on what you want.

/ Lanny R. Ream
/ Editor/Publisher, Mineral News
/ The Mineral Collector's Newsletter
/ Owner/Publisher
/ LR Ream Publishing
/ Publisher of gem & mineral references and guides

Collecting Site Index

Table of Contents 8/17/95