Cheaha State Park has a new attraction, the Pinhoti Mineral and Gem Mining Company. Park visitors can now purchase bags of gemstone-rich soil and pan for geologic treasures in a specially designed water trough located behind the Indian Relic Museum at the park’s main entrance.
The bags of soil are available from the park’s store for $6 to $20 from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. The bags contain a wide variety of gemstones, shark teeth, arrowheads, fossils and other geologic curiosities. Each bag comes with a brochure to help miners identify their treasure.
The mine is self-service. Once park visitors purchase a bag of soil they can pan for their treasure anytime from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. The Cheaha store also offers fool’s gold (pyrite), gemstones and other collectable items to remember your visit to Alabama’s highest elevation.
The gem mine is also available as part of a package tour which includes a tour of the Walter Farr Indian Artifacts Museum, a puppet show and meals. The tour is made available for public and homeschool field trips. For more information, contact the Cheaha events coordinator at Cheaha.firstname.lastname@example.org.