The 56 Great Sites To Find And Mine For Quartz In Arkansas In 2024

By Dr. Keith Jackson - Geology PhD

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The 56 Great Sites To Find And Mine For Quartz In Arkansas In 2024

By Dr. Keith Jackson - Geology PhD


Arkansas is well-known for its rich quartz deposits, so much so that it’s our official state mineral. The quartz here is unlike any other— no matter what color is it, looking at one is like looking through glass.

If you want to find quartz, there are many places to look for it, but some of the best ones are Magnet Cove, Mount Ida, Montgomery County, Hot Springs, and the mines in Garland County.

With landscapes that will mesmerize you with the finest finds and fill your eyes with the beauty of nature, exploring our state for quartz is an experience of a lifetime. Let’s begin!

How We Found The Best Quartz Locations in Arkansas
When it comes to choosing the best options for finding Arkansas quartz there are plenty of things we consider. Many of the best locations are closely guarded secrets which can make it really difficult for more casual rock hunters to find success. The key factors in our recommendations are:

  • The deep experience and understanding of our team about the area
  • Recommendations from local groups and clubs
  • How easy it is to get the a particular location
  • Safety and potential hazards when collecting
  • Weighing private and public locations
  • The ability for both experienced and novice rock enthusiasts to find great samples

With these factors in mind we’ve been able to put together a fantastic list that just about anyone can use!

The Best Places To Find Quartz

A large quartz crystal from Arkansas
Quartz photo provided by and available for purchase at MajesticMineralsUS

It’s no secret that there are plenty of gem mines in Arkansas, but if you’re laser-focused on finding quartz, below are our top recommended places:

Always Confirm Access and Collection Rules!

Before heading out to any of the locations on our list you need to confirm access requirements and collection rules for both public and private locations.

These requirements are subject to change without notice and may differ from what we state below.

Always get updated information directly from the source ahead of time to ensure responsible rockhounding.

Magnet Cove

A shallow and narrow creek surrounded by gravels and thin forest trees located at Magnet Cove

Magnet Cove is a small area, about 12 square miles, that’s famous for having over 100 different minerals. This includes deposits of quartz in different forms, like clusters or single crystals.

It’s an extinct volcanic crater that’s over 100 million years old. This ancient volcanic activity is why there are so many different minerals here. Its terrain is a mix of forests and open areas, with rocky outcrops peeking through.

Magnet Cove is not far from Hot Springs, making it easy to get to. Just drive about 21 miles southwest of Hot Springs on Highway 51, and you’re here.

Remember to always respect the land and hunt responsibly when you’re here. Review Arkansas’ collecting guidelines and comply with them accordingly.

Where we found quartz in Magnet Cove

The best spots to explore for quartz are along Magnet Cove’s rocky outcrops and near the old volcanic crater. You can also search through the forests and open fields of the area. Road cuts and natural erosions also reveal quartz crystals and clusters.

Rock pick being used

The tools every crystal hunter will need

When you're out looking for crystals having the right tools for the job is very important. You don't need a lot for most trips but there are a handful that are critical and will make your life a lot easier.

We get asked a lot about the equipment we use. Over the years we've found a handful of tools that we recommend to both new and experienced crystal miners which we outline in great detail in our complete rockhounding equipment guide. These are quality options that also happen to be relatively inexpensive.

Below are the basic tools that make your life so much easier and save you a ton of time. Check out the full guide to see everything we recommend bringing. One quick note, as an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases but we try very hard to only recommend gear we would use ourselves and often recommend brands you can't find on Amazon.

At a minimum you should have:

1 - Sturdy rock hammer: The Estwing Rock Pick is our standard

2 - Rugged chisels: Try Kendo' 3-piece Chisel Set

3 - Compact shovel: The Koleiya 28-inch shovel works well

4 - Rock screen pan: The Wazakura Soil Sieve Set fits the bill

5 - Eye protection: DeWalt Safety Glasses are cheap and comfortable

6 - Head protection: Malta's Safety Helmet has been our go-to

7 - Jewelers lens with at least 20x magnification: Jarlink's Jewelers Loop is perfect

The crystal-finding books that we use most

There are also a few books that have been extremely helpful in the search for gems. These books have great recommendations and tips:

National Audubon Society Field Guide to Rocks and Minerals: North America 

Southeast Treasure Hunter's Gem & Mineral Guide 

Earth Treasures: The Southeastern Quadrant 

We provide links to find these tools on Amazon but some can also be found at your local hardware stores. For more recommendations check out the link to our full tool guide above.

Mount Ida

Area exposures and digging area at Wegner Quartz Crystal Mines in Mount Ida

Known as the “Quartz Crystal Capital of the World,” Mount Ida is situated in the Ouachita Mountains. Its rich volcanic history has resulted in abundant quartz deposits.

The geography around Mount Ida is diverse, with rolling hills, lush forests, and numerous clear streams. As part of the Ouachita National Forest, it has plenty of beautiful, natural scenery. Its terrain is a mix of rugged mountainous areas and more accessible flat lands.

If you want to go here, you’ll have an easy trip. It’s about a 1.5-hour drive west from the state capital, Little Rock, along scenic roads that wind through the mountains.

Where we found quartz in Mount Ida

You can find some of the world’s clearest and most beautiful quartz in Mount Ida, especially in these specific spots:

  • Fisher Mountain
  • Ocus Stanley Mines
  • Wegner Quartz Crystal Mines
  • Area around Mount Ida

Montgomery County

Digging site of one of the mines in Montgomery County

Montgomery County is actually where Mount Ida is located, but besides the Quartz Capital of the World, this county has many other great sites where you can find quartz.

It’s part of the Quartz Belt, which runs through the Ouachita Mountains. Thanks to ancient volcanic activity, the county is rich in quartz crystals that are known for their exceptional clarity and size.

The county’s geography is diverse, featuring mountains, valleys, and clear streams. Its terrain varies from gentle slopes to more rugged mountainous areas.

To get here, you can drive from Little Rock, which is about 100 miles away. The journey itself is a scenic trip through hills and forests.

Where we found quartz in Montgomery County

There are many public mines and digging sites in Montgomery County where you can pay a fee to hunt for quartz, such as:

  • Crystal Mountain
  • High Point Mountain
  • Lewis Crystal Mine
  • Monte Cristo Mines
  • Pigeon Roost Mine
  • Lebow Copper Deposit

Hot Springs

One of the springs in Hot Springs

Hot Springs is a city situated in the Ouachita Mountains, which are known for their natural beauty and rich geological history. Like our other recommended places, it’s part of the Quartz Belt, which means there are plenty of quartz deposits around.

The geography of Hot Springs is unique because it’s not just surrounded by mountains but also famous for its natural hot springs. These springs have been attracting people for centuries.

The terrain around the city is a mix of rolling hills and lush forests, offering a picturesque setting for rock hunting and nature walks. You can get here from Little Rock with about an hour’s drive southwest on Interstate 30 and then Highway 70.

Where we found quartz in Hot Springs

You can find several spots near Hot Springs where you can legally collect quartz. The areas just outside the city, particularly along hiking trails and near streams, are good hunting spots.

Garland County

A look at the rock formations and surrounding at one of the mines in Garland County

Garland County is actually where Hot Springs is located, but it also has other quartz-bearing sites that are worth visiting. It’s also part of the Quartz Belt, so you can find quartz in many forms here, with excellent clearness and quality.

The geography of this county is diverse, featuring parts of the beautiful Ouachita Mountains. These mountains are not just stunning to look at but also great for hiking and, of course, rock hunting. It has a mix of gentle rolling hills and rugged mountain areas.

Since Garland County is located in the central part of our state, it’s easy to reach. If you’re coming from Little Rock, just take Interstate 30 west and then Highway 70, and you’ll be there in about an hour.

Where we found quartz in Garland County

Garland County is the seat of many mines that have quartz deposits, such as:

  • Coleman’s Crystal Mine
  • Miller Mountains ridges and slopes
  • Jesseville area mountain ridges
  • Mountain Valley area
  • Beard Mine
  • Shaw Mine
  • Little Utley mountain
  • North shore of Lake Ouachita

Other Great Places To Find Quartz

Cluster of slender clear quartz
Quartz photo provided by Weinrich Minerals

Besides our top recommended sites, you can also opt to visit the other quartz-rich spots all over our state, as listed below:

Our recommendations by county

County Location
Clark Humphrey No. 34 Mine
Cross Copperus Creek
Hot Springs Novaculite Mountains
Hot Springs Small hill at the junction of Highway 51 and the barite mine road
Hot Springs Hot Springs National Park
Hot Springs Chamberlaine Creek Barite Mine
Lawrence W.W. Smith Quarry
Madison Delaney mountain ridges and sloped
Marion Abandoned mines in Buffalo Point
Marion Big Music Creek
Marion Mitchell Mine
Perry Iron Springs Mine
Perry Deckard Mountain Quartz Deposit
Pike Glenwood area
Pike American Mine
Pike Prairie Creek
Pike Crater of Diamonds State Park
Pike Glory Hole Mine
Pike West Gap Ridge Mine
Pike Hudgins Prospect
Polk Baine Mine
Polk Bigfork Wavellite prospect
Polk Crystal Hill
Polk Wiles Quartz Mine
Pulaski Parson outcrops
Pulaski Ferndale Quartz deposit
Pulaski Granite Mountain Mine
Pulaski Big Rock Quarry
Saline Broad area outcrops in Paron
Sevier Abandoned antimony mine in Gillham
Sevier Gillham area mines

Laws about collecting quartz

Collecting quartz is generally legal in our state. In fact, many areas are open to the public for quartz collecting here, but it’s crucial to respect private property and only collect them from places where it’s allowed.

Public lands, like national forests, often permit rock collecting for personal use in small quantities, but rules can vary, so it’s best to check specific regulations with the Arkansas Department of Parks, Heritage, and Tourism.

Commercial mines here also offer the opportunity to pay a fee to dig for quartz. These places are great if you want to ensure you’re collecting legally and responsibly. Always remember that collecting on private land without permission is illegal and can result in fines or other legal consequences.

The Best Places To Buy Quartz

A look at the show room and some of the available items at It's About Rocks

If you’re one to favor easy peasy crystal collection over the tedious process of searching for them in the wild, below are some of our favorite crystal shops that have incredible quartz items:

About Dr. Keith Jackson - Geology PhD

Keith Jackson is an avid rockhound who is constantly exploring new sites to expand his collection. He has worked as a professional Geologist for over 20 years and holds a PhD in Geology from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, a Masters Degree in Geology from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and a Bachelors Degree in Geology from the University of Connecticut.

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