Does a destination have to be remote and hidden for it to be called impressive? Or perhaps, do you still need to conquer a challenging hike before you can enjoy a majestic view? Well, the Glitter Mountain in Arizona is a spectacle of glitters and sparkles that will delight anyone who sees it. It’s not that big of a place, but you can never ignore its beauty. I mean, how can you ignore a place that’s practically flooded with crystals? It’s like being on a Treasure Island! We know you’re glued in.
*Please note: The owner of this mine has asked the public to no longer mine for Gypsum here, however you are free to take any found around the perimeter.
Here’s what you should know about this cool place!
Find The Glitter Under the Sunshine at Glitter Mountain
Glitter Mountain or the “Sparkle Mountain” in Arizona is an old gypsum mine that is covered in thousands of fragments of the said mineral. The crystals all shimmer when the sun is shining, making the whole place sparkle beautifully. If you look at the place from afar, it seems like a big mound of land sprinkled with glitters. It gives a rather raw, yet rich aura sure to make anyone give a second look. You can also see a large pit with lots of gypsum in the ground.
The Glitter Mountain is only about a 25-minute drive from St. George and is just across the Arizona border. It’s best to visit in the early morning to be safe from the scorching heat. Remember, this is not a hike where you can take shade under the trees. It is more of a park that allows you to explore the whole area.
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Many visitors bring their kids simply because the thought of finding crystals (or treasures) excites them so much. We doubt it’s only the kids that get excited. Everyone will have an enjoyable time digging through the rocks to find a little piece of gem to take home. Look at the crystals sparkle under the sun! It’s so pretty.
An Active Mining Site
All thanks to the internet (blogs and travel sites), the Glitter Mountain has become an extremely popular attraction for both locals and tourists alike. However, this destination is actually an active mining site with a couple of restrictions.
Visitors shouldn’t be anywhere near the pit (mining for selenite crystals) for safety reasons. There’s a chance that the rocks from the cliffside above could fall onto the visitors below. Russ Feller, owner of the mining rights to the site, and the Bureau of Land Management enjoin all visitors to honor the claimant’s mine and avoid mining his claim.
Why did you say the sparkly gems are for free? Feller also said that he doesn’t mind if people come to visit the mine and take tiny pieces of crystals on the ground for free. He completely understands the awe and fascination about the place. You can explore the area outside but the pit is strictly off-limits. He does take issue if you extract large chunks of crystals from his claim. After all, he has a right to the whole place. If you are planning to visit, keep this in mind to avoid any issues.
This safety concern doesn’t make the place any less fascinating. Don’t you agree?
Glitter Mountain Arizona Back Story
Back then (2015), visitors even brought picks and shovels to the site so they can really dig for crystals the pit. There are also some who found their own selenite – from tiny chips to 18” slabs. The Bureau of Land Management just had to issue a press release so people can refrain from doing so as per the owner’s request.
If you really want to bring home many crystals, you can also avail their Pay to Dig scheme which lets visitors pay for the rocks.
- 1 piece (3″ below) – FREE
- 3″ to 8″ – $1 each
- 8″ to 12″ – $5 each
- 1 Gallon Bucket – $5
- 2 Gallon Bucket – $10
- 5 Gallon Bucket – $25
Location: Old Gypsum Crystal Mine, Littlefield, AZ 86432
Are you thinking what we’re thinking? The best destination is definitely one that sparkles all the way! Share with us your Glitter Mountain experience in the comments below. We’d love to hear it.
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