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Cowee Gift Shop & Mason Mountain Mine

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Address: 5315 Bryson City Rd, Franklin, NC 28734-0422
Phone Number:
+1 828-524-4570
Website
Today
09:00 - 17:00
Closed now
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Hours:
Mon - Sat 09:00 - 17:00
Description:

Tom and Ginger Johnson own and operate the mine and shop. The mine has...

Tom and Ginger Johnson own and operate the mine and shop. The mine has grown over the years to provide you with the best environment for all your rockhounding needs. We offer full access for the handicap to enjoy all the fun as well. Check in at the gift shop for instructions to our access road, so you can drive right down to the flume. At our gem mine we offer strictly native dirt at the dig pile, plus enriched buckets and all the best help so you can start finding gems right away! In our gift shop we carry a wide variety of snacks and drinks to keep you going. There is also a nice deli nearby if you need a little extra and for the really hungry, Franklin is only 12 minutes away. We also have a wide range of rough specimens from all over the world as well as from our "back yard" which is literally our mountain where the mine site is located. You will see many different types of gold and silver mountings and jewelry already manufactured from our jewelry bench that will astound most folks. So stop on in if you can, we will be happy to see you even if it's just to say hi and catch up on things!

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 88 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 70
    Excellent
  • 13
    Very good
  • 3
    Average
  • 1
    Poor
  • 1
    Terrible
Best finds in the area

We visited 4 mines in this area and this one got our votes for the best return of nice gems.Four of us shared 2 enriched buckets and we found some very nice rocks. The workers... read more

5 of 5 bubblesReviewed 24 June 2016
zayla2016
,
Chehalis, Washington
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88 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 88: English reviews
Chehalis, Washington
Level Contributor
8 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 24 June 2016

We visited 4 mines in this area and this one got our votes for the best return of nice gems.Four of us shared 2 enriched buckets and we found some very nice rocks. The workers were knowledgeable and helpful. The shop was clean and well-organized. When they looked through our finds, they were thorough. We enjoyed our 3 hours here... More 

Helpful?
Thank zayla2016
Spring Hill, Kansas
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 May 2016

We visited 3 gem mines and 1 gold mine while in North Carolina, and this was by far the most fun. The owners are sweet and genuine and speak with pride about "their" mountain. We learned the history of the area, and what gems were native. They took the time to teach us about the gems and stones we were... More 

Helpful?
Thank Tammy S
Bogart, Georgia
Level Contributor
213 reviews
63 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 56 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 13 May 2016

Very nice Christian family run operation. Facilities are very adequate for sifting through what you dig. In fact, they provide buckets, shovels, hand carts for bringing your full bucket back to the sluice and trowels for transferring your "dig" into the screens they provide. Very good instructions and help at identifying what you find. Just $20 for 4 hrs, dig... More 

Helpful?
Thank texdawg89
Level Contributor
11 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 October 2015

We have been there several times and it is great fun. Went there Oct 10, 2015 was their year end party had band lots of give a ways and I found a 625 carat ruby. We have had some of our stones set into rings and I have a 4 carat emerald set in a necklace that's beautiful also a... More 

Helpful?
4 Thank jaciet
Greenville, South Carolina
Level Contributor
68 reviews
17 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 October 2015

We went and tried a bucket of dirt to sift. There was a lot of stones in the bucket with local stones and added stones. It would be fun with children since that was a lot to keep them interested. They are generation owned and they were very nice and helpful.

Helpful?
1 Thank irish65_864
Kokomo, Indiana
Level Contributor
12 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 October 2015

My wife and I along with another couple visited September 26, 2015. If you are serious about finding stones to cut, this is the place. For $20.00 a half day or $30.00 for the whole day you can't beat the price. We helped finish one pile and watched as the owner went up the mountain and return with a fresh... More 

Helpful?
2 Thank pyrowild
Sparta, New Jersey
Level Contributor
108 reviews
30 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 September 2015

This was my first time gem mining. The prices were good. $20 for 4 hrs. Went with my sister and we each did a bucket in that time frame. I found a ruby, a garnet and a sapphire. Although I wish they had a handy refernce of stones to look for near the sluice, since the only chart to look... More 

Helpful?
Thank Cabrill
Chicago, Illinois, United States
Level Contributor
17 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 September 2015

This was my first time mining. I chose a bucket of emeralds and sapphires. Robert was very helpful in indentifying the rocks. I also mined a super bucket that had gems from around the world. Even though this was a salted bucket it was great fun finding the gems. The ladies in the shop were very helpful in determining which... More 

Helpful?
Thank Wrldtravel_13
minnesota
Level Contributor
184 reviews
81 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 125 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 20 July 2015

They offer "native" buckets you dig from a pile, as well as generously salted buckets if you want to find lots of color. I was pleased to find a few rubies and sapphires among the many buckets I sifted, and left one at the store to be transformed into a ring worthy stone. I'm not sure where the dirt actually... More 

Helpful?
1 Thank sleepycat69
Bentonville
Level Contributor
23 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 July 2015

Very exciting for the children (and us, too) to look for hidden gems; they didn't want to leave. Brad was very helpful and his sense of humor made the day even more enjoyable. Tom and Ginger are perfect hosts. They have turned some of our finds into gorgeous jewelry.

Helpful?
Thank Dennis C

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Jacksonville, Florida
6 months ago

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  • How do I get there using public transportation?
  • Is there a restaurant or café onsite?