Oklahoma is a great state for gemstone enthusiasts. The state is known for some unique rocks, minerals and fossil rocks. Major parts of Oklahoma are known for a wide range of gemstones' and minerals such as jasper, agate, zinc, and petrified wood. The state is also known for its rich fossil legacy that includes large vertebrates like dinosaurs. Some of the collectable gemstones and minerals that you should look for include:
Barite rose or simply the rose rock is one of the most popular collectable gemstones in Oklahoma. In fact, the state designates the rose rock as its state rock in the year 1968.
Barite, as the name suggests, is a heavy and brittle non-metallic rock. Usually, barite rose is formed in the sedimentary environment as twinned crystals that look just like open rose flowers and are reddish brown in color; hence the name barite rose. They are quite unusual and a popular item for local collectors to search for.
These collectible minerals are commonly found in central Oklahoma. You can find some around the town of Noble. The town also hosts the annual Rose Rock Festival and a privately run museum dedicated to the barite rose; Rose Rock Museum.
Quartz is another fairly common mineral that you can collect from Oklahoma. The crystalline silica quartz found in Oklahoma are generally clear in color although occasionally smoky varieties can also be found.
You can find quartz specimens in the Ouachita and Wichita Mountains.
Milky quartz are milky white in appearance, and you can also find them in both the Wichita and Ouachita mountains.
The Dolomites are important minerals found in Oklahoma. They are made up of magnesium and a carbonate of calcium. The crystals come in a wide variety of colors such as white, pink and cream. They are quite small and often have small curves in the crystals.
Dolomite is mined for its commercial properties quite extensively in Oklahoma, but these mines process ores rather than remove intact crystal specimens.
Gypsums are also commonly found in Oklahoma. They are made up of calcium sulfate. They come in a variety of colors such as pink, white, and greenish among others. Gypsum is a soft mineral that has a dull luster. This rock is commonly found is western Oklahoma.
Gypsum is used to make the plaster of Paris, tiles, special cement, and sheet rock among other construction materials. This simply means that although it is an important collectible mineral at has quite great economic importance.
The nicest gypsum crystals have been found in Alfalfa County. Some of these specimens come as nice crystalline clusters and are very popular for collecting.
There are a wide array of fossils that have been found in Oklahoma. Mostly invertebrate fossils are found today. A variety of different species of mollusks, trilobites, snails, and sea corals are routinely found in the state.
Plant fossils can also be found in Oklahoma. Impressions of fern leaves are often found in mud or sand that has fossilized, leaving behind an image of the plants.
Petrified wood is also abundant in many areas.