403 carat gem found
IT'S every tourists dream to strike gold on a visit to the Gemfields, a dream that came true for two young tourists from Perth.
At the size of a matchbox, the recent find in Policemans Creek, Rubyvale has locals excited.
It's a find that wasn't meant to happen. Sienna and Trad Holmes had been travelling around Australia, on a route that had them sticking to the coast.
However, their plans changed as Cyclone Debbie started to made landfall.
The couple decided to detour inland to avoid the flooding near the coast and arrived in Rubyvale for a "quick look.”
A local suggested they have a "scratch” around in the creek since there would be freshly uncovered ground after the rain and flow of water.
Sienna said after 45 minutes they found a rock that looked interesting.
"It just looked shinier than the rest of the rocks, I wasn't really sure what I was looking for but thought this one was worth keeping,” she said.
"We called into the store to fuel up, where we showed someone and they confirmed it was a certainly a sapphire.
"He suggested we go to a local gemcutter to get it checked out where they weighed it, 403 carats.
"We were told it would be hard to put a price on it because you don't know if there is any crystal inside it to be worth having faceted unless it was sliced open.
"But it is definitely worth something just as a specimen, and that's what we're going to keep it as.”
During their fossicking, the couple also found some small zircons.
"We didn't know they (the sapphires) could be so many different colours, pink orange, red, they're amazing,” Sienna said.
"We've got the gem hunting bug now, we are going to have to come back.”
When they stopped for fuel, Sienna and Trad also shared their find with Rubyvale Friendly Grocer co-owner Andrea Shawmarsh.
A Rubyvale local, Andrea was excited to share the news of the couple's find.
"Rubyvale has been lucky to get enough rain to make the local creeks to flow just enough to uncover a treasure trove of sapphires and zircons,” Andrea said.
"The Sapphire gemfields didn't get any flooding.
"Just some nice flows in the creeks and full dams, making it the perfect time for fossicking.”