Turquoise is found in its natural state in places with dry climates around the world. It can be mined in the U.S., Mexico, Iran, Chile, China, and Tibet. While the characteristics of each stone are very similar, different mines produce slight variations of turquoise.
Let’s take a look at some of the places in North America where you can find turquoise.
Sleeping Beauty Mine
Named after a set of mountains that resembles a sleeping woman, the Sleeping Beauty mine has a beautiful array of turquoise stones. The mine is located in Globe, Arizona, and is known for the striking light blue colored turquoise it produces. Currently, it is one of North America’s largest mines.
Located in Los Cerrillos, New Mexico, the Little Chalchihuitl mine is one of the oldest mining spots in the U.S. The turquoise found here is a stunning light green-blue color with gray or brown streaks, making the stone incredibly interesting to look at.
Royston Turquoise Mine
With stones that range in color from emerald green to soft blue, the Royston Turquoise mine is a popular one that allows the public to enter the mine and find turquoise independently. For a small fee, you receive a bucket and can spend a few hours searching for your own stones.
This mine is located near Tonopah, Nevada, and will not disappoint you. The beautiful greens and blues of each stone stand out against its golden brown matrix, and you can be sure that the turquoise you find there is of high quality.
The Ajax Mine is located in south central Nevada. In this mine, one can find turquoise stones ranging from light blue with streaks of dark blue to dark green with light blue spots. These green and blue stones are not as common as the regular blue variety, making this mine an interesting place to find turquoise in its natural state.
Turquoise Colors You Can Find
No matter which mine you choose, the turquoise you find there will be unique. The color of each stone will depend on its surrounding elements.
If you choose a mine with lots of iron or zinc present, the stones will have a yellowish green shade, whereas the mines with more copper present will produce bluer turquoise stones.
Some stones will exhibit a web-like matrix, while others will have thicker lines running through them. Colors of the matrix will also vary, giving you a wide selection of natural turquoise stones to choose from.
Photo Credit: © Alexander Hoffmann / Fotolia