From the barren, dry, inhospitable region in central Queensland comes this incredibly unique "outback treasure". The opal is found in the "shincracker" layer (resilient Boulder Opal Ironstone). A "spotter" will fly through the desert on a dirt-bike at up to 80kmn per hour looking for "show" (Boulder Opal Ironstone that is visible above the surface). A peg is placed in the ground and then a swimming-pool size hole is excavated. The Opal colour fills microscopic cracks and crevaces and to reveal the colour the Ironstone has to be hand-carved by a master gem cutter, a process that is both difficult and time consuming. Once the Opal is mined everything is back filled and trees are planted creating an oasis for future generations.
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