Herkimer County, New York

Where we stayed:

KOA Herkimer, in a Kamping Kabin.  Tenting and RVs are welcome.  Kottages have private bathrooms and full kitchens.  Pool, creek, picnic shelter, playground, field, camp store.

Where we visited:

Herkimer Diamond Mines where Herkimer "diamonds" (high grade clear quartz crystals) are found in vugs (small holes in rocks)!  The Herkimer mine is an open pit strip mine.  Rocks are everywhere, so all you have to do is break them open (hammers available from the office), or sift through the gravel.  Mine all day, come and go as you like, for one price.


Rest Rooms, snack bar, picnic tables vending machines, bottled water ($1), museum, short "how to" video , gem shop, playground.

Kids in quarry, hammers in hand


What we found:

Herkimer diamond in vug (10x)

Small Herkimer diamond with fossil plant inclusions (60x)

Calcite in vug with tiny herks (10x)

Book links:




What's nearby:

Erie Canal (Read the TrekOpinion here)

Baseball Hall of Fame (Coming soon!  Read the TrekOpinion here)

Howe Caverns (Coming soon!  Read the TrekOpinion here)

Other great mining opportunities:

(not reviewed yet)

Arkansas (true diamonds)

California (gold)

Other links:

Mineral Information Institute (free stuff, and stuff for sale)

Gem Clubs in the US

Mining History (worldwide)

World Museum of Mining

U. S. Geological Survey

Mineral Database

Pan for gold at Home!