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Barnett Opal Mine, Last Chance Canyon, El Paso Mts, Kern Co., California, USA

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Previously a precious opal mine. The opals are found as amygdules in basalt. The lower half of the Silica Gem Claims (upper half known as the Nowak Mine while the lower half known as the Barnett Mine) previously owned by Richard and Shirley Barnett of Bakersfield, California; For many years operated as a site for fee digging at $2.00 per person per day through about the mid to late 1990's. The abandoned claim is now part of Red Rock Canyon State Park. The opal sometimes fills vesicles in hard basalt which had to be broken down to find & remove the gems. Precious opal varied from the size of a pinhead, (averaging 5 to 10 mm.), to several inches (rare). Many fine opals had been produced from this and the neighboring Nowak mine.

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References

Sinkankas, John (1997) Gemstones of North America, Volume 3. Geoscience Press, Tucson AZ: 259.

Mineral and/or Locality  
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