A Gemstone El Dorado

called St Ives

By Jenny Summerville

I have never been on a property more alluring, more interesting and more scenic than St. Ives. Banksias, grevillias and native orchids, some in colours I have never seen before, flourish amongst the massive granite boulders and spectacular waterfalls roar into massive canyons.St. Ives is 5,000 acres of dogwood scrub, swamp and washed out bush tracks where only intrepid four-wheel drivers dare go but it’s a fossicker’s paradise.

Mine dumps left by the tin miners in the 1930s dot the gullies from one end of the property to the other. Sapphires; topaz; silver, pink and blue schorl tourmaline; massive quartz crystals; and citrine are just waiting to be found. Some of it I call ‘St. Ives gold’ because there isn’t any other way to describe the colour, and gold, yes, it’s there. They call it flour gold and I simply can’t be bothered with it.

There are no camping facilities because St. Ives is a well-guarded private property with padlocked gates and the owner requested that I not reveal to readers exactly where it is. I know, it’s hard, only a select few are allowed to go there but that’s the reason it’s still a fossiker’s paradise.

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