|Amethyst is a variety of quartz.
most distinct feature of amethyst is its colour -
- Amethyst occurs in many places in the world although the amethyst from
Brazil is the one found most often in stores.
Amethyst is the official
mineral of Ontario and Thunder Bay is the place most known
for amethyst in Ontario. For an excellent description of Ontario
Amethyst and where it is found, go to the Ministry of Northern
Development, Mines and Forestry page on Ontario
The colour of amethyst can vary from pale pink to a very dark purple.
Sometimes amethyst can be coated in another mineral. This piece of
amethyst is coated in barite crystals.
The amethyst from Thunder Bay can be recognized by the fact that many of
its crystal faces are coated with a dark reddish-brown layer of iron
Amethyst Points, coated in iron oxide Thunder Bay,
all amethyst looks as clean and "pretty" as the specimens found for sale
in a store. Amethyst from the same location can vary greatly - not only
in colour but also in the size of the crystals. This picture shows just
a small variety of pieces found at one site in Thunder Bay, Ontario.
There are many other pieces of quartz and amethyst that were left behind
because they were not nice to collect.
Collecting Amethyst in Thunder Bay, Ontario
There are a number of small amethyst mines around Thunder Bay where
you can collect amethyst for a fee.
The vugs where the amethyst crystals can be found are often filled
with red clay and the collecting can be a messy experience.