Experience Recreational Gem Mining With Your Loved Ones

Sheffield Gem Mine in Franklin, North Carolina offers recreational mining to the general public. You can spend hours of fun with us and embark on a memorable and potentially rewarding experience.  Plus relax and bring a picnic to stay awhile, we offer shaded picnic/grill areas for your enjoyment!

A group of people sitting on top of a wooden bench.

Admission to the Mine

We charge an admission fee of $10 per person. Each admission will include the following:

  • Use of the flume as long as you like to mine for the day.

  • The use of a screening tray, a tin can for your hopefuls, and a film canister to store your definite rubies and/or sapphires safely. If you are going through Rainbow Buckets, you will be given a zip bag that you can put your goodies into.

  • Access to amenities such as seats at our two covered flume lines overlooking our pond and beautiful water lilies, two picnic areas, gas grill, restrooms, and the mule.

Select the bucket of your choice

  • We have buckets ranging from $5 to $200 and you're free to mix and match as you please.

You will also receive our cheerful assistance throughout your visit.

Group Rates

Complete your day out with family and friends with an interesting bonding activity. Our gem mining experience is the perfect mix of fun and learning!

For groups of 15 or more miners, the admission fee will be $1 off per person. Each miner will receive a Rock Hound Button souvenir.

Field Trip Reservations

For field trips, reservations are required so we can properly accommodate your students. All you need to do is let us know what date and time you would like to visit.

We can open half an hour earlier to accommodate your group so that everyone gets started before other miners begin to show up. We will also provide the students with a brief history of Sheffield Mine and the Cowee Valley of North Carolina.

Please note that in the summer, field trips can only be scheduled if you are willing to arrive no later than 9 AM. This is to ensure that your students can be seated together and start mining at the same time.

Our Buckets

Native Buckets $5 each

Rainbow Buckets $10 each

We also offer specialty buckets that are a lot of fun and can be shared!  And several gem filled buckets bagged to go for gifts!

Native dirt from our mine bagged to go.
Nothing has been added just like our native buckets.

Our rainbow-to-go bag is great for at-home parties. It consists of TWO regular Rainbow buckets in a concentrated form already bagged up and ready to go!

We also have Sparkle and Fossil buckets bagged and ready to go home too!  Or to your campsite.

This is what we call a SUPER RAINBOW BUCKET, being that it has 5 times the amount of gemstones and crystals found in the Rainbow bucket, plus several more rare specimens that will never be seen in a Regular Rainbow Bucket! It also has several stones in a nice specimen size that are good for displaying. You’ll be provided a large scoop to use and a large zip lock bag to put your finds in.

This bucket is called the BIG EASY because much like New Orleans it’s a Party inside. You’ll find so many beautiful crystals and gemstones, twice as many as in the Silver Lining + Larger specimens, and a geode, and One already-cut and polished gemstone, ready to be set in jewelry.  Grab your Large scoop and Large zip lock bag for this one.

This bucket is the same size as the Big Easy Bucket but almost two times the gemstones with a whole lot less dirt! It also includes Emeralds, Special specimens, and more Rare Specimans and Two precious cut and polished gemstones ready to set.  You’ll need your large scoop and 2 Large zip lock bags for this one. In addition to that, you will have an exclusive opportunity to draw our extra lucky Golden Egg Prize Bucket.  1 out of every 10 Mother Lode Buckets contains an extra special golden egg with Cash prize inside!  We promise the surprise is worth it!!!

Specialty Buckets

Emerald Bags and Buckets

These buckets contain emeralds from Brazil.  You'll find some good quality Emeralds for those that love this stone, like we do!

Non-native Ruby/Sapphire Buckets

These ruby/sapphire gems are from India and are not native to our mine. We crafted these buckets specifically for those that want a guaranteed ruby find.

  • $50 - 500cts (Guaranteed Minimum)

Sparkle Buckets - $25

These buckets are hand-crafted for beautiful translucent gemstones that really sparkle and delight!  This is a higher grade selection of crystals to increase odds of faceting for those that make their own jewelry. We also have these bagged up and ready to go if you so desire.

Fossil Buckets - $20

In our buckets, you can find at least five different varieties of ancient fossils of various animals and plants from Morocco. These are gathered and selected carefully to provide aesthetically pleasing products to our customers.  We have these bagged to go as gifts as well.

Get in Touch With Us

Let us help you have a remarkable mining experience. To learn more about our services, please connect with our team today.