Richardson's Rock Ranch is located in Madras. Work out when and for how long to visit Richardson's Rock Ranch and other Madras attractions using our handy Madras trip builder.
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We stopped by the Richardson Rock Ranch on our way out to Brasada. We got there just as they were started to shut down road access. Even though the Ranch Shop stays open until 5pm, it is important to ... more »
What a place--if you like rocks even a little bit, you have to go there! This is an excellent place to help kids learn about geology and rocks, but as an adult, I learned a lot as well and had lots of... more »
This was our first time to Richardson's. We had our grandson with us so went to the bed we were told was the easiest. We got about 10 tennis ball size rocks and were quite pleased! Our grandson had a ... more »
Not a very courteous place. We travel there all the way from Portland for our anniversary weekend it was actually our ultimate destination. I remember it from growing up going there with my mom and grandparents, once, so our 17th anniversary trip was centered around rockhounding different areas- Prineville, Bend and the Richardson Ranch was our main destination. When we arrive there we got sidetracked looking at all of the rocks and displays and we were in the shop for about 20-30 minutes and we were the only ones in there the lady behind the counter clearly was talking to us when we had questions. so when I went up and told her that we would like to go dig Thunder eggs at one of the sites, she just dryly quipped 'it's too late today you can't go out'! When I asked why she said that it was past the cutoff time at 3 p.m. when I asked her what time it was it was 10 after 3:00!! I was floored quite honestly, because she never thought to mention it or maybe announce the pending 'cut off time' for going out to dig for thunder eggs if that was what we were there for. We felt like she didn't really care if we were there or not. when we explained to her that this was our anniversary weekend and where we were from it didn't really matter she wasn't going to be inconvenienced with letting us go dig 10 minutes past 3pm, even tho we had been picking purchase items for 20 minutes in the shop conversing with her. Not very friendly, and NO CUSTOMER SERVICE SKILLS!
I've never reviewed a single thing or place in my life! I read the reviews of this place an hr away after driving 5 hrs and this being a planned stop. I almost didn't go due to all the negative comments on their customer service! Well let me say thank God I didn't listen to the people that reviewed this place. These people obviously deal with every type of person in the world, most being fellow rockhounds..but I'm sure as we've all experienced w some people are just never happy! I watched this kid prob 12 yrs old up pick up at least 10 rocks out of displays and bring them to the counter saying how much is this? (Clearly marked prices on everything) they told him very nicely knowing he probably had no money! He left every stone on the counter for them to put back.. they treated him with nothing but respect even being slammed with customers, and I would have immediately said where are your parents or here's how you find the price! They bent over backwards to help every single person I saw them deal with, and I watched very carefully after all the bad reviews I read! Every person that had half a clue and those that didn't they explained the process educated the party and sent them digging! The maps were a little confusing for my 13 yr old who navigated for the first time w no GPS. Haha but we ended up at all the beds w no problem! The 4x4 needed for the opal beds is 100 percent true! Don't try it in a car! Although at 16 I would have made it in anything! Your call! But I'll say best rock hounding experience of my life! First time to ever pay to dig.. but I look at that as you're paying for access to their working cattle ranch! What you bring home is up to you! We got priceless pieces in our eyes! So well worth the 40$ for the day! The Jasper and new ledge beds hold some incredible agates and crystals and we were all by ourselves up there the entire time!!! Bring every digging tool and pry bar and hammer you own! And lots of safety glasses and water! My kids dug all day and when they got tired walked around and picked up little treasure pieces that just litter the ground everywhere you look! I will definitely be back many times over! Thank you for the great experience guys!
Took the kids out, borrowed some basic tools (picks and a bucket, although a pair of work gloves would have saved me lots of scrapes) and unearthed two dozen thunder eggs in the Priday beds within an hour of digging. It's fun, hot and dusty work, but once you find the right seam the eggs are frequent enough that even my kids got hooked on the thrill of finding them. I made the mistake of not getting the eggs cut on site: it turns out that my tile saw isn't up to the task. But still a fun afternoon with the kids (ages 11, 14 and 17). It's seven miles of dusty dirt road out to the beds, so I was glad to have four wheel drive.
Totally rude guy giving out maps and picks, I believe it was the son. As we were leaving, a woman got a flat tire, and they were so rude to her, telling her it wasn't their responsibility. Seems to be a womanizer and pig the way he was talking down to her. I planned on purchasing around 50 pounds of thundereggs, and a few Brazilian agates, but after we witnessed that, I just paid for the 20 pounds of eggs that I dug and decided against giving them any more of my money. We will NEVER come back. Go up the road a couple miles to Polka Dot mine and be treated like a person instead.
I have been going every year since I was a kid. Love the experience of digging for thunder eggs and seeing the amazing Rick's and minerals in the shop. Will continue to come back every summer.
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