Agate is a semi-precious stone found in many parts of the world. In the Pacific Northwest, agate is especially common near the sea. It comes in many different shapes, colors, stripes, and opacities and is sometimes the most beautiful and valuable of all the attractive stones found near the sea.
Agate forms naturally by filling voids in rocks with layers of molecules whose microcrystals form concentric bands and various patterns. Agate is stripped from the rock and usually eroded and trimmed to form a beautiful spherical stone.
Not too long ago, Washington State was a hotbed of volcanic activity in the Cascade Range. This usually produces a large amount of fabric that lends itself to a variety of uses, including stacking, reduction, and unbinding. That’s why Washington State is a great place to find this precious agate.
There Are Six Of The Best Beaches In Washington State To Find Agate
1. Mount Damon
Located in Grace Harbor County, Washington, the Damon Formation is a 2.25-mile strip of sand and gravel that runs southeast to the entrance of Grace Harbor. This beach is a favorite spot for agate hunters.
It is located in the harbor channel and catches the gems as they are washed in by the waves. This is what makes the Damon formation such a suitable place, as its shores are rich in agates and various rocks.
If you’re looking for agate in Washington State, the Damon Levels are probably the first place to visit. With such an abundance of excellent material, you won’t leave empty-handed.
2. Rialto Coast
Rialto Coast is a public beach located on the Pacific Ocean in Olympic National Park. It consists of a coastline and a coastal forest. This beautiful coastline is a gateway for explorers to a wonderful seaside hike and can be very easily accessed by many users. A beautiful seaside setting with just the right amount and size of driftwood. Onyx is found in abundance along this coastline, so why not go looking for it?
In addition to exploring the agates, the Riviera Rialto offers hiking and camping in scenic forests.
3. Whidbey Island
Whidbey Island is located in Puget Sound, just north of Seattle. Whidbey Island is located about 30 miles north of Seattle, between the Olympic Peninsula and the holes of I-5 in Western Washington.
The longest island in the continental United States, it has many bodies of water to enjoy long walks. Maxwelton’s waterfront is a great place to look for beautiful agates. Over the years, people have found some very nice things there.
Some people enjoy sea glass as much as agate. Sea glass is glass that has rolled into the sea and turned into small ball-shaped stones.
4. North Shore
The North Shore is the main coastline of Port Townsend and is well known for the seagrasses found along the shoreline. This coastline, located on the Olympic Peninsula, has many gravel areas, making it an ideal vacation destination.
The discipline of mining these gravels is widely recognized by beachgoers as a “hot spot” for agate mining. As beachgoers move east, the higher cliffs begin to rise and Fort Wharton crowns the headland.
It is advisable to go looking for agates at low tide. This will create a wider gravel layer and make it easier to identify the stones. However, good specimens can also be found at any time of the year.
5. Grassy shoreline
Just a few miles from the north coast is the Glass Coast, which is a real hotspot for sea glass, but many stone enthusiasts like to hike to discover the agates hidden in the gravel. The Glass Coast is a great place to hike, but rock hunters and beachgoers alike should rigorously do their homework in the area. Come back when the hidden tide has receded and the tide is out.
Granite, basalt, jasper, and quartz of all colors can be found here, and many prospectors visit the Glass Coast to check out the new treasures washed ashore.
If you are in the area, we encourage you to explore the North Shore and the Glass Coast. You may even find some beautiful agates or sea glass.
6. Swim on the beach along the Columbia River
While the Pacific Coast and the Puget Sound coastline get the most attention, the Columbia River should not be overlooked either. You’ll find beautiful agates and sea glass. In some parts of the river, you can really find some great agates.
If you really want to hit the jackpot, I suggest you take a boat down the river and look for gravel areas that are inaccessible to the average person. That way you can find some really nice little treasures.
Must See: 6 Best Beaches To Find Oregon Agates
Here Are Some Ideas And Methods To Help You Find Beautiful Agates To Add To Your Collection
1. drive on a gravel road by the sea or river
Whether by the sea or river, you’re more likely to find a stretch of gravel. Beaches with long stretches of sand and few or no rocks are usually not very productive. Look for areas where rocks have been washed away by waves, or where the material has been deposited on the sand. If you are looking for agates along rivers, look for them when the water level is low and the gravel is exposed.
2. sunny days
In Oregon and Washington, it is generally impossible to get sunlight during the winter months. When it does, you’ll want to get outside and look for agates. If you walk along the beach on a sunny day, you’ll find that these beautiful translucent agates really “glow” and are easy to spot.
Some agates glow very brightly in the sun. It’s easy to tell the difference…
3. After a storm or a big wave
When there are big storms and waves on the coast, you can tell that good agates are washing ashore. The sea is constantly replenishing the coast with new material. If the weather forecast calls for a severe storm versus a sunny day, it is best to go to the market. Your adventure on the beach will be exciting.
4. Hunting at low tide
When the tide starts to rise, it’s a good time to go beach hunting at the market. The waves are a treasure waiting for you to decide what to do with them. Likewise, if you’re looking along streams and rivers, go in the summer when the water level is low and the gravel is not paved.
5. The people involved
Agates can be found in large numbers in very good areas, but finding them takes physical strength. If you only spend 20 minutes on the road and don’t stray far from your favorite parking spot, you’re certainly out of luck. Pack rain gear and hiking boots and plan to spend a few hours at the market.
6. Look in the right places
There are certain places that are the best places to look for agates. As mentioned earlier, pebble beaches are generally the best places to look for agates, but they are not the only good beaches to look for agates. Do your research and spend your time where you will be most productive.
These cemeteries are not places where you can walk barefoot on the beach, but they are the best places to see agates and jasper.
Also Checkout: 7 Rivers In Montana That Are Full Of Gold
7. Sieve the gravel
There are many gravel deposits in some upland areas. Swimmers approach them and pick up the usual agates on the ground, but there may be other agates hidden just below the ground. Just sit and dig in the gravel to discover the treasure below. In loose gravel, all you’ll need is your fingers or a small spatula.
8. Teach you how to make onyx, jade, and petrified wood
Identification is very important because there are many interesting things on the beach that are almost impossible to identify. You may not be able to tell the difference between a carnelian or a yellow or orange agate, but what about dark pink jade or petrified wood? Even the most beautiful agate won’t look very exciting unless you take it home and put it in a tumbler. Then it’ll be perfect.
9. Use a treasure hunting spoon
Bending over and looking at the many small pieces of gravel can be tedious. A simple scavenger hunt can save your back, especially if you are old enough to do it.
10. Get out earlier than the others
This is very important. Try to get to the place where you found your favorite agate first, at the golden hour. This means getting to the beach before the tide goes out. Early morning is best, as the waves have been showing us new agates all night.
Washington state is a great state for all kinds of rock hunting. On the Pacific coast, the search for agates is especially exciting and rewarding.
These coasts are a great place to start, and in fact, you can find agates on almost any coast in Washington state. Generally, agates are found scattered along gravel shores and more rarely in clean sand.
Although Washington agates have little economic value, they are still of great value to those who find them. Its sheer beauty makes it a positive addition to your mineral repertoire.