*MINE IS CURRENTLY CLOSED*
*WAITING TO SEE IF THEY OPEN UP AGAIN*
- Contact: e-mail on web-site
- Web site: http://www.juniperridgeopal.com
- Length of Vacation: Day trip
- Cost: $250 (per person, per day or ONE gallon-bucket)
- Open: Seasonal – call or email for more info
- Type of Prospecting: Fire Opal
- Equipment: Bring your own
- Instruction: Web-site does not say
- Lodging: In both Lakeview and Klamath Falls
- Meals: Bring your own and LOTS of water
From their web site:
The mine on Juniper Ridge has been worked off and on for over thirty years, but was never promoted very much. The claim lay dormant for a time until Ken Newnham and his son Chuck found it and placed it under claim again in 1998. Old maps of the location had been inaccurate, and it had taken them over two years, hiking many miles in the surrounding hills before they found the abandoned pit.
The mine partners, who are all lapidaries, worked the mine for a few years by hand with family and friends, and produced a collection of cabochons and spheres from the material.
During 2002, they opened the mine to other collectors on a fee-dig basis. Since then, the popularity of the material has skyrocketed due to the incredible color, stability, and sizes of their material. It is not unusual to collect nodules of opal the size of a baseball, and this past summer, Ken retrieved a twelve-pound nodule.
The Newnhams continue to work the mine and to make appointments for fee-digging at their serene and scenic retreat high in the mountains of South Eastern Oregon.