Welcome to SapphireTalk!

On this site you’ll find our own Blog where we share thoughts, knowledge and a little BS about sapphires, The Gemfields, and our own enterprises and experiences… and your comments are welcome!

Make sure you visit our Forum where you can have your say about any topic relating to sapphires and The Gemfields. See what others are saying and get involved yourself… you can easily become part of the conversation yourself.

You’ll also find a wide range of links to other Gemfields businesses… from accomodation through to fossicking, jewellery, and more. In fact, everything you’ll need to make your trip to the Central Queensland Gemfields a holiday to remember.

So… look around and get involved… no Sapphire Talk is any good without conversation!

Latest Blog Post:

  • Fascinating Travel Blogs! Doug

    We’ve had some terrific write-ups in international travel blogs from highly intelligent, attractive and influential writers who came on our “Do-It-Yourself Sapphire Digging Experience”.

    20151022_sapphire_127The first may require you to learn Dutch. We get many visitors from Europe looking for that great Aussie Outback experience… and what could be more of an experience than digging your own sapphires? Traveller-writers Johan & Bo have a fabulous travel blog following their Australian adventure… their webpage about their sapphire experience can be found here: Johan & Bo’s Aussie Travel Blog

    Even if you don’t speak Dutch you will enjoy the article… plenty of great photos taking you through a whole day digging sapphires, learning their worth, and then exploring the Central Queensland Gemfields.

    20151022_sapphire_253Of course, there are some of you (and us) to whom Dutchish is a foreign language. To view an English (Googlish) translation, try this version: Johan & Bo’s Approximate English Translation

    If you want to get a feeling for the experience you will have on Keith’s self-drive sapphire fossicking tour, or visiting brother Dave’s “Fascination Gems” showroom for a learned assessment of your day’s finds… this is a great blog packed full of photos of their experience.

    Johan & Bo… thanks for paying us a visit and for the great write-up, and best wishes for the rest of your amazing journey!

    On a different kind of journey, National Geographic travel writer Max Anderson paid us a visit while researching his “Queensland: What Lies Beneath” article covering various fossicking adventures in Australia.

    Queensland_IMG_8378_HR-510x340Its a long way to go digging the dirt at Glenalva in the Central Queensland gemfields but not too far for Max, and no reason not to call it as he sees it…

    Next morning I join Keith Bezett, an ornery New Zealander who leads ‘tagalong’ tours into the gem fields. I’m not quite prepared for the sight: a dozen happy, filthy holidaymakers swinging picks in deep holes along a narrow creek. “They’ve all got the fever,” growls Keith. “See those two blokes? They only came for five days. Four weeks later and I still haven’t got rid of the bastards…”

    NG_mast_black_hi-300x104Well ol’ Max, what you see is what you get! Check out Max’s article for the rest of what he thought about his “Tagalong Sapphire” experience with host and champion digger Keith Bezett… a very amusing and well written piece.  Max… thanks for joining us in sunny Queensland and for spreading the word about the joys of digging in the Gemfields!

    If you’ve written something online about your wonderful experience on Fascination Gems “Tagalong Sapphire Tour” then please let us know… we love to get feedback about your experiences. Mostly.

Recent blog posts:

  • Fascinating Travel Blogs! We’ve had some terrific write-ups in international travel blogs from highly intelligent, attractive and influential writers who came on our “Do-It-Yourself Sapphire Digging Experience”. The first may require you to learn Dutch. We get many visitors from Europe looking for that great Aussie Outback experience… and what could be more of an experience than digging your own sapphires? Traveller-writers Johan & Bo have a fabulous travel blog following their Australian adventure… their webpage about their sapphire experience can be found here: Johan & Bo’s Aussie Travel Blog Even if you don’t speak Dutch you will enjoy the article… plenty of great photos taking you through a whole day digging sapphires, learning their worth, and then exploring the Central Queensland Gemfields. Of course, there are some of you (and us) to whom Dutchish is a foreign language. To view an English (Googlish) translation, try this version: Johan ...
  • 3.97ct Piece of Magic! Everyone likes looking at a nice stone, right? Here’s a gem you might enjoy… Found by Brett from Port Macquarie in June 2014 (a 2500km round trip… he must enjoy the Central Queensland sunshine!), this beauty must be one of the best stones found this year. (click on the image for a closer look) Here are some technical details from the cutter (Fascination Gems’ own Dave Bezett)… Finished size: 3.97ct.  Because the rough was very deep added an extra 16 culet facets.  For the technically minded, on the pavilion main facets 50 degrees, girdle 54 degrees, culet 42 degrees.  Crown mains 39 degrees, stars 24 degrees, girdles 46 degrees. (click on the image for a closer look) What’s it worth? Conservative estimate… $6000 – $8000. Not bad, and surely worth a little fuel money and sweat on the willoughby. Well done Brett!  
  • Digging New Ground! A couple of months ago Keith moved his dig to a new location… so if you’ve been out here before why not come along on the ultimate Dig’em Yourself experience and check out some new dirt! Take a look at the bottom of the Dig Your Own Sapphires page for more photos of the new location.
  • 40ct Sapphire Charlie & Irena from Redbank Plains in Brisbane come up a couple of times every year and head out with Keith, and have been doing so for five + years. They found this stone on Easter Sunday just under 40ct in the rough and cut 16.72ct and is now a stunning pendant. (click on an image to see a close-up view)      
  • Australien in 100 Tagen! It turns out that Keith, your host on the self-drive dig-your-own-sapphires Tagalong Tour, is a movie star! A wonderful Aussie adventure movie is doing the rounds in Germany. Called “Australien in 100 Tagen” (Australia in 100 Days, to the non Deutsch speakers), this movie takes viewers on a journey through some of Australia’s most iconic locations. Of course, no visit to Australia would be complete without getting your hands dirty and digging a few sapphires! Okay, okay. Keith is not the star of the show, but he is the most handsome.  If you don’t believe me, that’s his picture on the front of the DVD cover… 😉 Check out the trailer for the movie… there is some amazing cinematography. If  you want a copy of the DVD you can visit it’s official website: www.australienfilm.de (it is only narrated in German language but the images… and ...
  • A Kiwi Experience A couple of long-time visitor to the Gemfields, Ann from Kenepuru (New Zealand) has put up a wonderful post describing her and her husband Pete’s sapphire adventures in the Central Queensland Gemfields.  This is really worth a read as, in addition to some beautiful pics of some of their sapphire jewellery (all dug themselves!), there’s a great description of their experiences on Keith’s “Tagalong Tour” dig-’em-yourself sapphire excursion. Check out Ann’s post at their Kenepuru Water Taxi website (and pay them a visit if you are in Keneperu… itself a wonderful tourist destination!) Join the Forum discussion on this post
  • A Common Problem Inspired by the strange look the free-roaming cows gave me as I ran down the road between Sapphire and Rubyvale. Under the Fossicking Act, the Gemfields are designated a miners common, thereby allowing residents the right to permit a few head of livestock to graze freely throughout the town. These cows seem to have a good life, and know most of what goes on in the Gemfields, I reckon.   Join the Forum discussion on this post
  • Santa’s Mine! Just to get you into the spirit of Christmas (click the image to get a larger version)… (Impress your friends and annoy your relatives… send them a Christmas Card with this cartoon on it!) Join the Forum discussion on this post
  • Little Green Men Visitors come to the Gemfields from far and wide…
  • specking Finally rain 25mm over night!Time to go specking.Even though overcast all day long still manage to find 15 pieces for a combined weight of 40 carats.Size range from pin head to 10ct star.Sunshine not required to see these just persistance!When specking in mud add extra 10 minutes for boot cleaning.
  • Digging Tour Video A couple from Germany made a short video when they came on the Fascination digging tour… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EFZinqGQko8
  • New friends on digging tour You never know who will turn up on fascination digging tour.
  • Welcome to Sapphire Talk! (an introduction by a Doug Worrall) Digging for sapphires gives you plenty of time to think… thoughts such as “why am I doing this?”, “why are sapphires so hard to find” and “my, I’m gonna be buff after a day of digging with this pick.” Sapphires are hard to find… you have to shift a lot of dirt and rock; you have to sift and sieve for hours, days or years to find that “great stone.”  But, as anyone who has tried it will tell you, the thrill of finding even a gem-quality sapphire — buried for millions of years just waiting for you to discover it — and then having it cut and set into a beautiful piece of jewellery is priceless. But, as I said, they can be hard to find.  I know… in 2011 I visited the Queensland Gemfields on ...