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“True Rock Hound”
Review of Sheffield Mine

Sheffield Mine
Ranked #14 of 41 things to do in Franklin
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Sift through the dirt to find rubies or other minerals.
Reviewed October 12, 2009

This mine was different, I wouldn't recommend for children unless you get the rainbow bucket and then they don't find to many big pieces. Now if you are a true rock hound shifting through the NASTY, DIRTY red clay is fun. You need to now what you are looking for and don't count on anyone at least have an idea. At first we didn't like it but once we started to get the hang of it I quess it was ok. The driveway up the mountain really sucks it makes you really nervous with the sides washed away in some parts. The staff was nice and helpful.

Thank Extremegirl34
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"rainbow buckets"
in 19 reviews
"native buckets"
in 17 reviews
"carat ruby"
in 8 reviews
"gem mining"
in 10 reviews
"better luck"
in 2 reviews
"free bucket"
in 2 reviews
"several years"
in 3 reviews
"wonderful family"
in 2 reviews
"wear old clothes"
in 3 reviews
"fun experience"
in 2 reviews
"black light"
in 3 reviews
"take home"
in 3 reviews
"small sapphires"
in 2 reviews
"mud"
in 13 reviews
"warren"
in 4 reviews
"dirt"
in 35 reviews
"gems"
in 38 reviews
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126 - 130 of 141 reviews

Reviewed September 27, 2009

This location feels too commercial to provide a true mining experience. The guy in the office is rude, acts like it is a problem for him to do his job of orienting you. We walked in and he asked if we had been there before, we replied no and he then grumbled and said that his throat hurt and he was loosing his voice from all the explaining he has had to do that day. (We arrived 1 hour after the mine opened, a little soon to be complaining about having to explain things too often) Once we sat down the guys on the line were nice enough but they were very scarce, they spent a lot of time talking to people and each other at the other end of the line where there were few people. What we did find for sapphires were small shards and nothing that could be used. (although we did not go there expecting to find something as it is depicted as an unsalted mine) There were three announcements in the two hours we were there that someone had found a 30+ karat sapphire. The other instance we had with the shop keeper that was unacceptable for a business was two older gentlemen were going through their buckets at the end of the flume and one of them was trying to break a rock open with another rock. The shop keeper came out and politely said if you would like to break a rock open with a rock hammer or another rock... (then changed his tone to extremely rude and loud) do it at home, you will ruin the flume by hitting a rock on it. I would not recommend this mine to anyone and will not be returning in the future.

5  Thank homebody30
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 12, 2009

This recreational activity was extremely well priced at $15 per adult & $10 per child. That includes 2 starter buckets of dirt each, your choice of rainbow (seeded with plenty of large, pretty semi-precious rocks & a few arrow heads) or native (potential ruby & sapphire). We took our 7 yr old here for her first gem mining experience & started her off with a couple of rainbow buckets. These buckets are easier to clean during the sluicing process so my daughter quickly learned what to do & the joy of discovering real treasures. Eventually she became excited about helping us with our native buckets (harder to clean & to find what you're looking for). I was a little unsure of the shop's gruff/jaded attitude when we first arrived, but found him to be friendly enough as the time passed & his instructions turned out to be exactly what we needed to know. His examples of what people leave behind (by not following his directions), were extremely helpful in identifying what we were looking for. Sure enough, my husband wanted to throw out a large rock that my daughter insisted had a ruby in it...and she was right! The young man that was assisting people outside at the sluice was extremely knowledgable, friendly, & genuinely willing to help. He patiently spent quite a bit of time helping my daughter identify her entire (almost quart size) bag of finds. Then he helped her learn how to find the rubies in our buckets. We didn't realize we had spent 3 1/2 - 4 hrs doing all this b/c she was having such a good time! Having both kinds of buckets provides entertainment for both kids & adults. Although I am not an experienced rock hound, the guy sitting beside us was a regular visitor to this mine. He showed us a "honker" he had had cut & polished from a previous trip here (it was starred) and he found (among several smaller ones) a 16 carat "squeeker" in the 5 buckets he went through while we were there. We ended up with a total of about 25 carats of small rubies to take home & had a wonderful time whether our finds amount to anything usable or just end up being souveniers. This is a great first experience for those that understand you can't expect fame & fortune for $15. Just remember to take extra clothes if you plan to do anything afterward. You'll definitely get dirty if you're doing it right.

1  Thank Runesong
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 30, 2009

A while back I had, of course, seen this mine on the Travel Channel. Well, I was so excited to try mining that I went to their site and ordered a bucket of dirt to go. A week later, my order still had not arrived. When I called, I got a man who said his wife and he had been very busy in the mine and had not had time to go through the pay pal orders yet. He assured me that they would get to it. Another week...the same result. On the third week, I called pay pal and explained to them the situation. I did get my money back along with a frantic phone call from the wife apologizing and offering a free bag of emeralds ($80 value I think). I turned them down and decided on that basis alone I would never visit their mine.

3  Thank goddess_complex
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed May 28, 2009

My Aunt and I spent the afternoon at Sheffields Mine. When you go into pay you do get instructions on how to clean the red mud off the rocks while sluicing and are shown examples of what to look for. You will get very dirty and sometimes wet. They do have towels to wipe your hands off with but bring wet ones and extra towels this mud sticks to you. Several honkers were found when we were there, I did find a 13 carat Ruby. The guys that work there walk up and down the sluice and were very friendly and more than helpful answering questions and looking over our rocks before we dumped them. If you want to have alot of fun and get dirty like a kid this is the place. And hey you just might find that Super sized Ruby >^..^<

3  Thank catwoman27
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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