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Mineral Explorers


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Our team of Mineral Explorers travel to some of the richest and most remote mines on earth, giving viewers a behind-the-scenes look at this exciting industry. Digging, dynamite, danger - it's all in a day's work, as the Mineral Explorers team demonstrates just what it takes to unearth gems, crystals and minerals of all kinds.


  • Peru: Pasto Bueno

    The Incans thought Rhodochrosite was the blood of their kings and queens turned to stone. In this episode, Thomas returns to the Pasto Bueno Mine in the Peruvian Andes, a mine he had visited forty years earlier. Although this mine has always been known for its tungsten production, it also yields Peruvian Rhodochrosite, Quartz, and Tungsten crystals. During that first visit, he found these minerals both at the mine and in the homes of miners in a nearby village. Over the years, these minerals were taken to Lima helping establish Peruvian Rhodochrosite as a truly legendary mineral. To get to this high altitude mine, he must navigate dangerous roads, battle altitude sickness, and climb 200 feet into the mine to see a freshly exposed pocket of Quartz and Tungsten crystals.

    Length: 00:27:27
    Usage rights: 9/10/2016 to 9/9/2018
  • Portugal

    The Panasqueira mine has created an appetite for Apatites. These rare green, purple, or blue crystals are becoming more and more popular with mineral collectors around the globe. Come along as we are the first to film a behind-the-scenes look at one of the most mineral-diverse mines. Later, we stop at Porto; which uses mineral rich schist to plant and nurture a delicious export all its own. We meet a mineral dealer selling specimens out of an old restaurant right next to the "Mouth of Hell."

    Length: 00:27:28
    Usage rights: 10/8/2016 to 10/7/2018
  • Southern California

    A Chinese empress' treasures, a world-renowned jewelry company, and one of the biggest mineral finds of a century came to be thanks to mineral rich southern California. We visit the gem belt; world renowned for its Blue Cap Tourmaline, fashionable Pink Tourmaline, and the birth place of Kunzite. San Diego's rich gem history is all but forgotten, but signs of its rock star past are on every street corner. Join us to learn more about one of America's most overlooked treasures.

    Length: 00:27:29
    Usage rights: 9/24/2016 to 9/23/2018
  • Spain

    Not all that glitters is gold; it could very well be Spanish Pyrite. Join us as we visit never-before seen private collections and hear the history of a country full of explorers. Then travel with us as we step back in time in the medieval town of Navajun. While there, we visit a mine that glitters with the world's most perfectly crystalized Pyrite. We end our trip with an exclusive look at some of the world's best pyrite held in a private collection of the mine owner, who kept some of his favorite specimens.

    Length: 00:27:27
    Usage rights: 10/1/2016 to 9/30/2018
  • Stories from the Road

    Gems and crystals aren't the only thing we collect as we travel the globe. Join us as Thomas and his friends share some of the more adventurous stories they've gathered on their many expeditions. From flooded mines to road blocks, stampedes to jail time; the hunt for great stones may not be easy, but the memories from the road make great souvenirs.

    Length: 00:27:26
    Usage rights: 9/17/2016 to 9/16/2018
  • Tucson

    Tombstone, Arizona is the place of legends; not all of them have to do with gunslingers and cowboy hats. Far more important were the copper and silver mines as they helped bring the US into a more modern era. And these mines were the catalyst for Arizona Statehood. Over a century later, Arizona continues to sparkle. The biggest gem and mineral treasure chest comes to Tucson once a year. We crack open the lock to some of the best and brightest collections and take you exploring at the largest mineral exhibit on Earth.

    Length: 00:27:26
    Usage rights: 10/15/2016 to 10/14/2018