My wife and I recently drove down to Payson, AZ to visit some family. Payson is located in the Ponderosa forests northeast of Phoenix, and we incidentally found out that there are a number of really good collecting sites in the area. They have agate, amethyst, and even a site with doubly-terminated quartz crystals scattered on the ground (In New York, they’re called Herkimer Diamonds). If you are ever in the area, stop by the ranger’s station in Payson and they will give you directions to the local sites.

We also visited a wonderful rockshop. Galarneau’s is located on Main Street in the south end of town. Gerry and Marty are very friendly, down-to-earth people who know a lot about Arizona. Their collection of cabs was enormous, and the prices were very reasonable (don’t be alarmed by some of the high prices on their website. Those are some of their show pieces). We bought some cabochons of picture jasper and agate, and a dozen pair of small stones for earrings. We also found some great Arizona Peridot.


  1. Cliff,

    I found this excerpt from a USGS site:

    “Peridot Mesa, located on the San Carlos Apache Indian Reservation east of Globe in Gila County, is the most productive locality for peridot in the world. A second Arizona location from which peridot is recovered is Buell Park Apache County, Arizona, about 16 kilometers north of Fort Defiance. However, it is estimated that 80% to 95% of the world’s production of peridot comes from the San Carlos Reservation.”

    Unfortunately, only Native Americans from the San Carlos reservation are allowed to mine the peridot on that land. I’ll look around and try to find other sources for it in Arizona though.

  2. where did u find the peridot in arizona,I do rock hound some where i go down in the winter from washington state

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