Rocks & Minerals

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Crystal Park is a popular recreational mineral collection area on the Pioneer Scenic Byway in southwest Montana. The Dillon and Wise River Ranger Districts work to promote, develop, and maintain this site for recreation. There is a recreational use fee of $5.00 per person which goes to help maintain the area. The park is open for quartz crystal digging from May 15 to October 15, depending on snow and road conditions. The facilities are universally accessible.

Though the BDNF has only one designated mineral collection area, it is still a great place for prospecting, rock hounding, and invertebrate fossil hunting. These activities usually do not require a permit when there is little or no disturbance to the environment.

Special regulations apply to the collection of petrified wood. It is illegal to collect artifacts, such as arrowheads, old bottles and other historic items on the National Forest.

For safety reasons, please do not go into abandoned mines.

For information about the rules and regulations and whether you need a permit for your activity, call, write, or email us at the addresses on the Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest home page, or contact your local District Ranger office.


Recreational Prospecting Guide

Landscape Rock Collection Information

Unpatented Mining Claims

Recreation Areas

Recreation Activities