Thunderegg fossicking – unearth a mystery

What little boy does not dream of exploring and discovering treasure? And what little girl will not be transfixed by colourful gems?

If you are travelling to the Gold Coast, let your inner Indiana Jones shine through at Thunderbird Park. With so much to do, you should also consider staying a night or two at Cedar Creek Lodges.

The following information has been provided by Thunderbird Park:

Thunderbird Park on Tamborine Mountain is a wildlife and geological rich oasis, stretching over 112 hectares. Translucent rock pools, inspiring landscapes, towering rainforests and star studded skies add to the magic.

This family friendly property includes the Adventure Parc, high ropes course, a Laser Skirmish jungle village and horse trail riding tracks, but thunderegg fossicking is one of the most popular activities.

Fossicking for gemstone-filled thundereggs
Fossicking for gemstone-filled thundereggs

Thunderbird Park has the largest deposit of thundereggs in the world. The mineral rich seam running through Mount Tamborine was discovered in 1967.  Thundereggs are easy to find and your family can fossick for this treasure in the 300 by 50 metre open cut mine.

You can also meet local rock expert and Thunderegg Mine manager Pete Ellis (AKA Rockodile Dundee) and find out more about these fascinating formations that have been hidden just below the ground since dinosaurs roamed the earth.

Pete says the formation of thundereggs is something of a mystery.

Find treasure-filled thundereggs, formed millions of years ago

It seems volcanic upheavals that took place millions of years ago caused bubbles to form in silica-rich material,” he says.

“Hot gases and steam was trapped in nodules, it expanded and some mineral structures joined together in the cavities. As the earth cooled, the material shank to produce the characteristic star-shaped cavity.

“Silica minerals entered the cavity and solidified to become chalcedony (a microcrystalline type of quartz). Crystals were deposited on the cavity walls. The repetition of these processes produced the interesting patterns and colours that give thundereggs universal appeal.”

Thundereggs - colours can be intense or subtle.

The Thunderegg Mine is open every day except Christmas Day and Good Friday from 9.30 to 2.30pm. The admission price includes a mining permit, a pick and a bucket to put the treasures in.

Thundereggs can be cut and polished for a small fee. Jewellery and artefacts made from thundereggs are on display and for sale in the Rock Shop. See Thunderbird Park for more information and bookings.

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