Make your own free website on Tripod.com

California Jade

Home | Where to Go | After the Search | Jade Facts | Scenic Gallery | Jade Gallery | More | Contact Me
I've noticed in the past that it is rather difficult to find information about California jade on the internet. 
 
I aim to fix that problem.

     The jade you are about to see comes from certain sites along the south central coast of California, just below Big Sur, along Highway 1.   There are 5 main spots to hunt for jade; San Simeon, Willow Creek, Jade Cove, Gem Cove (aka North Jade Cove), and Sand Dollar Beach.
     There is more than 1 type of jade.   Jade comes in many colors, including green, black, yellow, red, and blue.  Black jade has two names, depending on the quality; elephant jade (lesser) and volcano jade (greater; can also be red).  Black jade that has swirls of yellow is known as fire jade.   Blue jade also has two names, depending on color: dark blue is simply "blue jade" and light blue is aquamarine jade.

map.jpg

Is it jade?  Here's how to find out:
I was taught 3 tests that can pretty much confirm or deny if it's jade:
 
 
1.  The Hardness Test
     Jade doesn't break or scratch easily.  If you find a piece, try breaking it (use the 2:1 method: your breaker should be 2x the size of the piece of jade).  You may have to hit it like 5 or 6 times.  If even a chip flies off it probably isn't jade.
 
 
2.  The Resilience Test
     Jade's surface is usually very smooth, with no friction.  Rougher stones and slabs will most likely have a thin white film covering the rock.  Get the piece wet, and use the Hardness Test.  Also, only blue or green jade in Big Sur will have a white film.  
 
3.  The Light Test
     This is for smaller pieces, about the size of a silver dollar or smaller.  Works great on penny-sized or less.   Hold the jade up to the light (sun, etc).  Jade is translucent.  Jade will seem to glow a light green color.  On thicker pieces only the edges my show through.  On slabs the color may appear to have some depth to it.
 
#The Dummy Test
    When in doubt, ask someone.  Most jade hunters wear a piece of jade as a necklace on a simple leather strap.  The better the jade, the more experienced the hunter.