Fluorite collecting at the Burren, Ireland

Fluorite collecting at the Burren, Ireland

Posted by Monika Razkova on 24th Feb 2018

There is a place on the island of Ireland that looks like from a movie. You can define it with three words: rocks, rocks, rocks :D Edmund Ludlow (c. 1617–1692) once described the land with the following words: "It is a country where there is not enough water to drown a man, wood enough to hang one, nor earth enough to bury him". The place is called THE BURREN. The name comes from the Irish An Bhoireann, meaning "the place of stone". When I first saw the place I was amazed! I`d had never supposed that such landscape can exist at all! There are rocky hills and mountains, and... well, hardly nothing else :) The rocks have formed interesting patterns, looking like layers overlapping one another, with cracks running through them in parallel lines. The landscape was formed when softer parts of water-soluble limestone (probably with a higher content of gypsum) dissolved, and the harder remained. Such scenery is called karst, and The Burren is one of the biggest karst areas in Europe. 

Limestone rock formations at The Burren, county Clare, Ireland

It took as a while to find the Fluorite vein. There are allegedly three to be found, but even localizing one was a difficult task. What would we do without Klaudia, whose 5th sense has never let us down so far! She has that super ability to find even the best hidden treasures! This time she spotted a bit of white Calcite, and it was a sign for us that there was something going on in the rock!

Sedimentary rocks at The Burren, Ireland

The Fluorite that we found had very deep purple colour, it seemed almost black sometimes! Some pieces had a little bit of red-brown Hematite coating, which made our findings even more interesting.

Fluorite vein in Limestone at The Burren, county Clare, Ireland

We found two really large pieces, absolutely amazing! Two of us were lucky to decorate their display shelves with them :) You can probably imagine how heavy they were to carry :D

Fluorite specimen from Ireland

The smaller pieces were beautiful, too! Below a photo of freshly-washed stones drying.

Irish Fluorite

And here a still dirty stone...

Fluorite from Ireland

View for Ballyvanghan from the collecting site.

And the last... a heart in a rock. How can you not love The Burren? :)

This site is suitable for collecting with kids over 8. The terrain is difficult to walk, as there are many gaps and holes where you can easily slip and fall. The slopes are steep at some places and there are also high "cliffs" several metres high. 

The views are truly stunning, a paradise for photographers and nature-lovers! 

Remember guys, when you go collecting, always try to make as little damage as possible. A rock out, a rock in. No rubbish left behind. We must show Mother Nature some respect for all the goodies she gives us. 

Some Fluorites from this place are listed for sale in our Irish Zone, but you can also find a few in our Etsy shops: RockyRockMinerals and NatureMagicStones. Enjoy!