Rockhounding on Public Lands

BLM’s regulations (43 CFR 8365.1-5(b)(2)) generally allow members of the public to collect reasonable amounts of nonrenewable resources such as rocks, mineral specimens, and semiprecious gemstones for noncommercial purposes on BLM-managed public lands. Noncommercial means that the collector is not selling the items for a business or financial gain. Such collection is generally not allowed, however, in certain areas, such as on developed recreation sites, where there are active mining claims or other authorized mineral uses, or on lands where the mineral estate is owned privately.

Learn more about Rockhounding by reading our FAQs or visiting the links below to download rockhounding guides and to explore rockhounding areas offered by the BLM.

Frequently Asked Questions

A Guide to Collecting on Public Lands

State Rockhounding Guides:

Rockhounding Areas:


Have Questions?

Contact your local BLM office regarding applicable laws, policies or resource ­­­­management restrictions that may limit or prohibit rock collection for noncommercial purposes.


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