Flood Gem Flood Gem – Queensland Boulder Opal
  • October 2016

    Hi all,

    It has been difficult to find time for news letters with our busy mining and cutting operations over the years, I apologise for my slackness.

    This year has been a little different with unprecedented wet weather out at the mines, thus hampering our mining program. The property owners are excited about the rain and the country is looking the best I have ever seen it in 30 years. Rain up to 114mm fell over two weeks when I was last at the mine, water had made its way into our open pit and made it unworkable. I was also stranded for 2 weeks, plenty of emergency stores kept me going.

    I took the opportunity to undertake further prospecting and digging some test holes to 18 feet in 3 different spots on our current project. I found encouraging results in 1 of the 3 holes dug, two more deposits were found on this lease, one deposit in the side of an old cut, also a top gem green ,orange vein was found in a boulder at the surface beside an old shallow bulldozer cut. We now have 3 more prospective deposits to work this year.

    Sometimes when digging near the surface dust and dirt can conceal boulders amongst the hard surface sandstone, this last discovery is one such deposit that was missed. The rain had exposed these boulders. Very excited by this one and plan to develop the deposit next trip and alter my pit to include this area.

    Opal has been mined from this deposit for the last 3 years with boulder containing opal found from the just under the surface down to about 30 feet, generally there are 3 undulating patchy levels to follow, after this depth the boulders have seen little opalization.

    It is my intention to sell more rough through this site in the next few months.

    All the opal needs to be faced down to expose the opal prior to sale. Most of the boulder opal from this mine is found in a boulder that contains a horizontal “slip” line. The resulting cavities can contain opal but it is not possible to see the opal without some processing.

    Lower grades of opal are sold per 20 litre bucket and are priced from $50 per bucket, these pieces are suitable for cheap opals and some specimens, any thing else you may find in them would be purely speculative.

    Please feel free to make inquiries for rough or cut boulder opals.