Many people like to combine their trip out to Topaz Mountain with a stop over to the Dugway Geode Beds because of their close proximity to each other. The Dugway Geode Beds location includes a private claim owned by the Crapo family based out of Delta, Utah. They manage a rock shop in their backyard called “the Bug House” in addition to overseeing the Dugway Geode Beds claim as well as the the U-Dig trilobite claim further West of Delta.
Although you can dig for geodes outside of the claim, you will have far better luck getting permission from the claim-owners to collect on the actual claim. The fee for collecting on the claim is just $30 and you can contact the owners at 435-864-2402 or [email protected] ahead of time to arrange your visit. A liability waiver must also be signed before entering the site.
EDIT: The family who owns the Bug House contacted me and gave me an update–“We have recently lost Dugway geode claims to the BLM. We were late on a maintenance waiver and the BLM was able to take them away. Please update your website letting people know there is no longer a fee to dig geodes. We are working to try and get our claims back but for the time being it is now free for all public to go get as many geodes as you want. We haven’t been digging out there since we lost the claims so it wont be as easy as it used to be to find geodes.”
You might even get lucky and schedule your time while the claim owners are on location. I’ve heard they are very helpful in explaining the history behind the geodes and in finding the best and largest specimens to make sure people go home happy. They have an excavator on site and are constantly digging up new clay to sift through to get to the geodes.
Most of the Dugway geodes I have collected have been hollow and full of chalcedony and beautiful druzy quartz crystals. The colors most seen are clear, white, purple, and pink (I really like the pink ones for some reason). Some collectors have found geodes also containing jasper or calcite, barite, or amethyst crystals which is a real treat. It will be tempting to crack them open right there on site with your rock hammer to see what each one contains, but don’t fall into that trap. I can promise you that they will look much better on your shelf with a clean cut and polish 🙂
You’ll want to look for the semi spherical white rocks that sometimes have smaller lumps on them. Some of them might even have the septarian-like turtle shell looking exterior. You should be able to gather which ones are more hollow or contain cavities by the weight alone. Sometimes, you might even find conjoined ones which are always fun to cut open. You never know what you might find!
Directions to Dugway Geode Beds:
From the intersection of 800 North and I-15 in Orem, Utah
2. Take exit 278 and turn left (West) onto Pioneer crossing
3. Drive for 6.5 miles and turn right (North) on Redwood Road
4. Drive on Redwood Road for one mile to Main Street/Highway 73 and take a left (West) at that light
5. Drive on Highway 73 for 20.9 miles through the towns of Eagle Mountain, Cedar Fort, and Fairfield until the highway starts to turn back Northwestward
6. Take that left (West) toward the town of Faust for 13.6 miles
7. You will cross railroad tracks and eventually run into Highway 36 running North to South
8. Turn left (South) on Highway 36 for .6 miles and then turn right (West) onto the Pony Express Road
9. Drive for 49.5 miles on Pony Express Road until you see the brown sign on the right for the geode beds
10. From here the trail turns sketchy and I would recommend a high clearance vehicle to navigate the roads through the beds
You can dig pretty much anywhere, but the claim is located near the Northeast corner of the beds and the easiest route to get there is to take the road that wraps wide around the left side and pops out on the North side of the claim.