17 Gemstones in Washington State: Where to Find Them and How to Use Them

  1. All You Need to Know When Rockhounding in Washington State
  2. Best Washington State Rockhounding Location
  3. Top 17 Gemstones in Washington State
  4. How to Do Rockhounding in Washington State 
  5. FAQs

Are you curious about the world of gemstones in Washington State? Have you ever wondered what treasures lie beneath Earth’s surface in this beautiful region? 

In the heart of Washington State, you’ll discover a dazzling array of gemstones, some exceptionally rare. These rare gems are just waiting to be unearthed by those with a keen eye and a love for adventure.

It’s your ticket to unlocking the secrets of rockhounding in this beautiful corner of the world. You’ll discover where to find them, how to identify them, and the unique uses of these gems. 

All You Need to Know When Rockhounding in Washington State

graphic table about state information for Washington State

Washington State has a rich history of rockhounding and gemstones. People have been exploring its beautiful landscapes for centuries, searching for precious rocks and minerals. The state is famous for its unique gemstones, like the beautiful Washington Emerald, found nowhere else in the world. 

In the past, Native American tribes used these gemstones for trade and decoration. Later, miners found riches and beautiful jewels in the state during the Riches Rush.

Washington State is incredibly diverse when it comes to its terrain and wildlife. It has everything from the majestic Cascade Mountains to the lush Olympic Peninsula rainforests. The state is also home to wildlife, including black bears, deer, and eagles. 

Gem mining in Washington State requires awareness of your surroundings and the possibility of interactions with these intriguing species. Always respect their space and keep a safe distance.

The weather in Washington State can be variable. Summers are usually warm and dry, making it an excellent time for rockhounding adventures. Spring and early fall can also be pleasant. Winters can be cold and wet, so there are better times for rockhounding. 

Plan to visit during the warmer months to make the most of your rockhounding trip. Before going, check the weather and dress appropriately, including strong hiking shoes and sun protection.

When you go rockhounding in Washington State, you must be a responsible and environmentally conscious collector. By picking up your trash and any litter you may find, leave no trace of your visit. Be respectful of private property and only collect rocks and minerals from public lands with permission. 

To preserve the state’s natural beauty for future generations, rockhounders must respect local rules. By practicing good stewardship, you can enjoy Washington State’s treasures while helping protect its environment.

Best Washington State Rockhounding Location

A graphic design table for Best Washington State Rockhounding Locations

The best resource to kickstart your journey is the Official Washington State Website. Here, you’ll discover a treasure trove of information about rockhounding locations, guidelines, and safety tips. The website offers a wealth of information to help you rockhound successfully and enjoyably.

It is essential to remember that the types of crystals and rules for rockhounding can vary and change over time. This means you should always conduct thorough research before heading out on rockhounding excursions. Responsible and ethical rockhounds must be aware of changing rules.

Top 17 Gemstones in Washington State

Washington State is a hidden treasure trove of beautiful gemstones, and 17 rare Pacific Northwest gems will be revealed. These precious gems are like nature’s hidden jewels, waiting to be discovered.


A polished Turquoise crystal on a white background

Numerous areas in Washington State contain Turquoise, a beautiful blue-green gemstone. You might stumble upon this beautiful stone when exploring North, South, West, or Eastern Washington. 

In North Washington State, Turquoise is found in Mondovi and lava outcrops. Tunk Creek in the eastern section of the state has Turquoise in the gravel at its mouth. 

When hunting for Turquoise, there are some essential things to remember. First, always ask for permission if you’re on private property. For tools, you’ll need a good rock hammer and chisel to carefully extract the stone from its rocky host. Be sure to wear safety goggles to protect your eyes. 

Some Turquoise stones have distinctive patterns and colors due to other minerals. Blue Kingman Turquoise and Green Royston Turquoise are found in Washington State.

Many people think Turquoise can promote feelings of calmness and balance, making it a great stone to have in times of stress. Some even say it enhances communication and self-expression. 


Fire agate crystal on a white background

Agate, a mesmerizing gemstone, can be discovered in various enchanting corners of Washington State. You can find them in the north in the river gravels around Dungeness. Venture south and you’ll uncover their hidden beauty in the gravels of Crescent Beach. 

Journey westward, and the beaches around La Push will reveal their splendid presence. And when you explore the eastern part of the state, these splendid gemstones can also be found in other various locations.

You’ll need a keen eye to spot these hidden gems among the rocks and pebbles. A rock hammer or a small shovel can be your best friend for digging them out. It’s essential to ask for permission if you’re digging on private property.

 Agates in Washington State range from bright reds and oranges to tranquil blues and greens. Each is unique and charming.

Many believe they can bring balance and harmony to your life. Some say they can enhance your emotional stability and promote inner peace.


opal on white background

Many Washington State areas provide beautiful Opals, each with its charm. In North Washington State, you can discover Opals in places like Mondovi, which shimmer within lava outcrops. These dazzling beauties are also found in lava outcrops northeast of Pullman in South Washington State. 

When you embark on the exciting journey of hunting for Opals in Washington State, there are a few things to keep in mind. First, always be on the lookout for rocks with a colorful, almost magical play of colors. Opals are famous for their iridescent sheen, ranging from blues and greens to fiery reds.

You’ll need a pickaxe, shovel, and a sturdy container to carry your finds while digging for Opals. Remember to handle them with care, as Opals can be pretty delicate.

In Washington State, you can discover different varieties of Opals. Common Opals are opaque and multicolored, while precious ones have a captivating color play. You might also encounter Fire Opals, exhibiting a warm, fiery hue. Each variety has its unique charm and is a treasure waiting to be found.

They are also thought to enhance emotional healing and bring peace and tranquility. These stunning and spiritually stimulating jewels promote self-expression and confidence. Next time you search Washington State for Opals, realize that you’re finding nature’s enchantment and mysticism.


A Thulite crystal on a white background

Thulite, a beautiful pink gemstone, can be found in various locations across Washington State. North and South Washington State have this beautiful stone, making it accessible to rockhounds and gem enthusiasts. 

In the north, Thulite is found in Tunk Creek and gravel near river mouths. It can be found in areas with similar geological formations in the southern region.

When looking for Thulite in Washington State, remember a few things. One, always obtain necessary permits or permissions if you dig on private land. Two, to collect your findings, you’ll need a rock hammer, chisels, and a sturdy backpack to carry them. 

Thulite comes in various shades of pink and can sometimes display unique patterns. In Washington State, Thulite comes in various translucency and color intensities.

This lovely pink stone is believed to promote feelings of love, compassion, and emotional healing. It’s linked to the Heart Chakra, making it a good choice for improving empathy and connection.


Cinnabar x no credit needed

Cinnabar, a fascinating mineral, can be discovered throughout Washington State. In the northern part of the state, you can stumble upon this vibrant red stone near towns like Bellingham and Sedro-Woolley. These locations often reveal Cinnabar in small quantities, mainly in rocky areas and along riverbanks. 

Longview and Vancouver can sometimes yield this unique mineral in the southern region of Washington. Here, Cinnabar can be found in streams and even in some forested areas. 

When searching for Cinnabar, it’s essential to exercise caution. The bright red color is quite eye-catching but contains mercury, which can be harmful if not handled properly. Always wear gloves and wash your hands thoroughly after handling Cinnabar. 

To extract Cinnabar, you may need a small shovel or trowel to carefully dig around rocky areas or streambeds. It’s vital to prioritize safety and respect the environment while collecting this mineral.

You can find different varieties in Washington State, although the most common form is the bright red crystal. Some Cinnabar specimens may contain impurities, creating variations in color and texture. Keep an eye out for these unique variations while exploring the cinnabar-rich areas of the state.

This crystal is known for its metaphysical properties. It can help promote creativity, passion, and self-expression. Famous for meditation and spiritual pursuits, it’s claimed to quiet the mind and spirit. Others believe it can balance energy and improve health. 

Jasper Varieties of Washington State

red jasper on white background

Jasper is a beautiful and fascinating stone found throughout Washington State. In the northern part of the state, you can discover this gem in places like Dungeness and the river gravels. 

Southern areas include Lake Crescent, one mile northwest of the lake’s western end, and Crescent Beach’s gravels. Watch for it at numerous Washington State locations!

A shovel and bucket are needed. Protect your hands with gloves and wear sturdy shoes. When digging for Jasper, respecting the environment and taking only what you need is essential. 

Look for rocks with colorful patterns and unique shapes. It comes in red, green, and variations with beautiful patterns.

It brings courage, strength, and a sense of stability to those who possess it. Some even believe it can help with stress and anxiety, making you feel more grounded and at ease. 


A tumbled Amethyst crystal on a white background

Amethyst, a stunning and vibrant purple gemstone, can be discovered in various locations across Washington State. This magnificent stone is snuggled in gravel and shining near streams in Newport, North Washington. 

In South Washington State, Amethyst can be discovered in the charming town of Clay City, about a mile to the east. It’s essential to explore these specific spots when searching for Amethyst.

Bring the right tools, such as a small shovel or trowel, a bucket, and a pair of gloves. These tools will help you carefully excavate the gemstone without damaging it. Remember to respect the environment and ask for permission to explore private property.

In Washington State, you can find a variety of Amethyst that is known as Chevron Amethyst. This type has beautiful white stripes that run through the purple gem, giving it a unique and eye-catching appearance. Watch for this particular variety when you’re on your gem-hunting expedition.

Many people believe that it can help with relaxation, stress relief, and promoting a sense of calm. It’s also thought to enhance spiritual awareness and intuition. 


garnet crystal on white background

Garnet, a stunning gemstone, can be found in various locations across Washington State. In North Washington State, you may find this magnificent stone in Sacheen Lake and along the shorelines. Head toward Chattaroy, and you may discover Garnets hidden in the gravels of Little Spokane River. 

If you journey to South Washington State, keep an eye out for places like the banks of the Columbia River. The gravel beds of the Skagit and Wenatchee Rivers in Western and Eastern Washington State are suitable Garnet habitats. You can find beautiful Almandine and Pyrope Garnets in Washington State.

Remember to respect the environment and always obtain necessary permits for collecting gemstones. You’ll want a shovel and a sieve to dig for Garnets. Look for areas with loose gravels or sands, as Garnets hide there. Look for the deep red to brownish-red Garnets, and remember to wear gloves to protect your hands.

This gemstone is believed to have several benefits. It’s often associated with passion, energy, and love. Some people believe that it can help boost self-confidence and creativity. They are thought to provide protection from negative energies and promote a sense of balance and stability. 


raw obsidian on white background

Explorers can find Obsidian, a fascinating volcanic glass with a rich history, throughout Washington State. This sparkling jewel can be discovered in gravels at Crescent Beach in North Washington State. Traveling to the South Washington State, you’ll discover Obsidian through lava outcrops northeast of Pullman. 

West Washington State boasts its hidden gems, with Obsidian deposits waiting to be uncovered in lava outcrops. This mysterious stone can be found in Eastern Washington State, adding to your rock-hunting adventures.

When you set out to find Obsidian, knowing what to look for and how to dig is essential. Keep an eye out for shiny, glassy rocks with a dark, often black, color. Obsidian extraction involves gloves, eyewear, a rock pick or hammer for breaking big surfaces, and a chisel or pry bar for precision work.

In Washington State, you might come across various varieties of Obsidian. Snowflake Obsidian has white splotches, and Rainbow Obsidian shines when lit. These variations make each discovery a one-of-a-kind experience.

This stone is believed to have grounding and protective qualities, helping individuals connect with Earth’s energy. Many also use Obsidian for its ability to absorb negativity and promote emotional healing. 


A Variscite crystal on a white background

Variscite, a beautiful green mineral, can be found in various locations across Washington State. This treasure is located near Sacheen Lake and lake and river shorelines in the state’s northern section. Explore, one mile east of Clay City, in South Washington State with caution. 

West Washington State also has its fair share of Variscite, often hiding near the coast’s rocky terrains. Eastern Washington State has Soap Lake, where you may find this fascinating stone.

Knowing what to look for is essential when you’re out searching for Variscite. This mineral is typically found in nodules or crusts with a soft, waxy texture. You’ll need a pickaxe, shovel, and a brush to extract it. Gently excavate the area where you suspect Variscite might be hiding, being careful not to damage the fragile crystals.

You can find a variety known as “Utahlite.” This type is unique for its vibrant green hue and is highly sought after by collectors. It’s often used in jewelry-making and is believed to have healing properties.

Variscite is said to have calming and soothing energies. It’s believed to help reduce anxiety and stress, making it an excellent stone for those seeking emotional balance. Some also say that Variscite can enhance one’s intuition and communication skills. 


Polished Beryl on a white background

Beryl, a beautiful gemstone found throughout Washington State, offers a touch of nature’s splendor. North, South, and Eastern Washington State contain this magnificent stone. 

In North Washington State, you can uncover Beryl in places like Monte Cristo and area mining dumps. These areas hold hidden treasures waiting to be unearthed. 

Although not as abundant in Beryl, the western part of the state may still yield some surprises. Eastern Washington State also boasts Beryl deposits, adding to the state’s natural splendor.

When searching for Beryl, look for shiny, translucent crystals with a faint blue or green tint. To extract these gems, you’ll need a pickaxe, shovel, and a bucket to collect your findings. 

Remember to be patient and gentle when digging to avoid damaging the delicate crystals. Washington State has many Beryl types, including Aquamarine and Emerald, each with charm and color.

Beryl is believed to possess metaphysical properties that can benefit those who connect with it. Many people say it helps enhance creativity, communication, and focus. It also brings calm and tranquility, making it a perfect companion for meditation or daily life. 


azurite crystal on white background

The blue mineral, Azurite, can be found in several regions of Washington State, each having its own appeal. This beautiful stone is found in Monte Cristo, North Washington, famed for mineral resources. The area mining dumps are also a treasure trove for Azurite seekers. 

South Washington State’s Loon Lake Copper Mine may also yield this captivating treasure. The allure of Azurite extends to the west, with traces found in different locations. Eastern Washington State also holds its share of this beautiful mineral.

When you embark on an Azurite crystal hunting in Washington, there are a few things to keep in mind: always prioritize safety, bring the necessary tools, such as a pickaxe and shovel, and it’s crucial to wear protective gear, like gloves and safety goggles, to prevent accidents. 

Look out for signs of Azurite, which typically appears deep blue, often with hints of green. These stunning crystals can be hidden within rocks or other minerals, so keep a keen eye out. In Washington State, Malachite-Azurite combines the bright blues of Azurite with the lush greens of Malachite.

This enchanting stone is believed to enhance intuition and insight, making it a favorite among those seeking spiritual growth. It stimulates the Third Eye Chakra, aiding in meditation and psychic development.


A polished malachite crystal on a white background

Malachite is a beautiful green stone that can indeed be found in various parts of Washington State. Old mining activity left Malachite in Monte Cristo, North Washington State. 

Head south, and you can also find it in mining dumps. If you venture toward the west, Loon Lake Copper Mine is another spot where it has been spotted. And remember Eastern Washington State; there are places there, too, though it’s a bit rarer.

Remember to bring some digging tools when you’re out looking for Malachite. A small pick or shovel can come in handy. Look for rocks that have a greenish hue, but be careful – Malachite can sometimes resemble other minerals. 

In Washington State, you might find a few different varieties. Some pieces are pure green, while others might have bands or patterns of green and darker shades. Each piece is unique and special in its own way.

Some people believe that it has metaphysical properties. They say it can help with emotional healing and balance. Holding it might make you feel more at ease and connected to nature. 


epidote on white background

Epidote is a fascinating mineral found in various locations across Washington State. Whether in North, South, West, or Eastern Washington, there are opportunities to discover this beautiful stone.

In North Washington State, Epidote can be uncovered in the majestic North Cascades. These rugged mountains hide pockets of this mineral, waiting to be discovered by curious rockhounds. The Columbia River Gorge in South Washington State has Epidote in its basalt crevices. 

Moving to West Washington State, this mineral can be found in the Olympic Peninsula. The lush rainforests here hold secrets of Epidote tucked away in their mossy nooks. At Eastern Washington, Epidote is found at the Loon Lake Copper Mine and Tunk Creek gravels.

Always be cautious and wear appropriate safety gear, like helmets and gloves, especially when digging in mines or rocky areas. You’ll need a rock hammer, chisel, and safety goggles to dig for Epidote. Gently tap the rock with your hammer to expose the Epidote crystals without damaging them.

In Washington State, you may come across different varieties of Epidote. Some have a rich, deep green color, while others might have a lighter shade. The color variations are due to different mineral compositions within the stone. These differences make each Epidote specimen unique and intriguing.

Many believe that Epidote is a stone of manifestation and abundance. It enhances one’s ability to attract what they desire in life. It is also thought to help release negative emotions and promote personal growth and transformation. Some people use it for emotional healing and to strengthen their connection to the natural world.


A vanadinite crystal on a white background

Vanadinite is a beautiful and unique mineral found in several locations across Washington State. This magnificent stone may be found in North, South, West, or Eastern Washington. 

The gravels at Crescent Beach in North Washington State contain Vanadinite. In South Washington State, look for it in places like Newport, where you might spot it in streambed gravel.

You’ll need a shovel, pickaxe, and a sifter to unearth this gem. Wear gloves and protective eyewear to keep yourself safe during your adventure. It’s essential to respect the environment while searching for this lovely crystal. Always follow any local rules and regulations for collecting minerals.

In Washington State, you can find various varieties of Vanadinite, each with unique colors and patterns. Some might be bright red, while others could be more of an orange or brown hue. These differences make each find exciting and one-of-a-kind.

Many people believe that this stone has some fantastic benefits. It’s said to help boost your energy and creativity, making it a great companion when you need a little inspiration. Vanadinite is also believed to promote focus and concentration, making it handy for students and anyone with a busy mind.


A Corundum crystal on a white background

Corundum, a fascinating gemstone, can be found in various locations across Washington State.

In North Washington State, Corundum can be found in places like the Sultan River and Gold Basin Creek. The gravels of these rivers often hide tiny treasures of Corundum waiting to be discovered by keen-eyed adventurers.

Sifting through Cowlitz River gravels at Packwood, South Washington, may provide Corundum. Heading to Western Washington State, Corundum has been spotted in the gravels of the mouth of Tunk Creek. This spot is a favorite among rockhounds searching for these shiny wonders.

In Eastern Washington State, you can find Corundum in places like the Liberty area and even at the Little Naches River. These locations hold the potential for rockhounds to uncover this precious gemstone.

When looking for Corundum, watching for small, hard, and often transparent crystals is essential. A magnifying glass can be a helpful tool to identify them. To find these stones, use a shovel or trowel and a sifting screen to separate the precious Corundum from the gravel.

Washington State has many Corundum varieties, including Sapphire and Ruby. These gems range in hue from Sapphire blue to Ruby red, making your finds even more fascinating!

This stunning gemstone is believed to bring inner peace, wisdom, and clarity to those who wear it. It promotes focus and enhances intuition, helping individuals make better decisions.


polished rhodonite on a white background

Rhodonite is a captivating gemstone found in various locations across Washington State. This lovely stone may be found in North, South, West, or Eastern Washington State. 

In North Washington, you can discover Rhodonite in places like Pullman, nestled in lava outcrops to the northeast. In South Washington State, you might find it hiding in the gravel beds of the Little Spokane River near Chattaroy. Keep your eyes peeled for these enchanting and valuable gems in Washington State.

Make sure you have the right tools. A small pickaxe or a rock hammer can be handy for breaking rocks and revealing the hidden beauty of Rhodonite. Remember to always wear safety goggles to protect your eyes. 

As for what to look out for, keep an eye out for pink and black rocks with distinctive patterns. Rhodonite in Washington State can have variations, including pink, black, or a mix of both colors. These patterns make each piece of Rhodonite unique and special.

This charming gem is said to have a calming and soothing energy. It’s believed to help heal emotional wounds and promote love and compassion.

A graphic design table for 18 Gemstones in Washington State Where to Find Them and How to Use Them

How to Do Rockhounding in Washington State 

Rockhounding in Washington State is an exciting hobby that allows you to discover beautiful crystals and gemstones in nature. Before rockhounding, you should know what gear you’ll need, how to pack and carry your finds, safety rules, and pro tips. 

Tools and Gear for Rockhounding

To dig and find crystals in Washington State, you’ll need the right tools and gear:

  • Rock Hammer: A sturdy rock hammer with a pointed end for breaking rocks.
  • Chisels: Chisels come in various sizes and are useful for delicate work.
  • Safety Goggles: Protect your eyes from flying rock fragments.
  • Gloves: Wear gloves to shield your hands from sharp edges.
  • Bucket and Bags: These are handy for collecting and carrying your finds.
  • Geological Field Guide: A guidebook to help you identify rocks and minerals.
  • Magnifying Glass: Useful for examining small details.
  • Maps and GPS: To navigate to rockhounding sites.
  • First Aid Kit: Always have one in case of emergencies.

Packing, Transporting, and Cutting Crystals

Once you’ve found some crystals, you’ll need to handle them carefully:

  • Packing: Place your crystals in padded containers or wrap them in newspaper to prevent damage.
  • Transporting: Secure your packed crystals in your vehicle to avoid jostling.
  • Cutting: For cutting and polishing, you may need specialized lapidary equipment. Consider joining a rock and mineral club to access these tools.

Safety Regulations in Washington State

Safety is a top priority when rockhounding in Washington State:

  • Permits: Some areas require permits, so check before you go.
  • Respect Nature: Leave no trace and respect the environment.
  • Stay Informed: Know the weather forecast and road conditions.
  • Buddy System: Rockhound with a friend for safety.
  • Emergency Plan: Have a plan in case of accidents or emergencies.

Tips for Rockhounding Like a Pro

To excel at rockhounding in Washington State, follow these tips:

  • Research: Study the geology of the area you plan to explore.
  • Join a Club: Connect with experienced rockhounds for guidance.
  • Ask Locals: Local knowledge can lead you to great rockhounding spots.
  • Patience: Be patient; finding crystals can take time.
  • Record Keeping: Keep records of your finds and locations.

Disclaimer: Rockhounding rules vary by state, so check Washington State’s before you go. 


What Rare Crystals are Found in Washington State?

Some rare crystals in Washington state include Benitoite, Pink Garnets, and Blue Agates.

What Precious Metals are Found in Washington State?

Washington State is known for gold, silver, and platinum group metals like palladium and platinum.

What Blue Stone is Only Found in Washington State?

Ellensburg Blue Agate in Washington State changes from blue-green to purplish-red under incandescent light.

Subscribe the #1 Crystal Newsletter

Get noticed with latest Crystal updates
100% Useful Informations
Recent Crystal Images
All Crystal Instagram Image - 1All Crystal Instagram Image - 2All Crystal Instagram Image - 3All Crystal Instagram Image - 4All Crystal Instagram Image - 5All Crystal Instagram Image - 6All Crystal Instagram Image - 7All Crystal Instagram Image - 8