If you are buying Lightening Ridge opals it is a good idea to have some idea of what Lightening Ridge is and what sort of opals one can expect from there.
Lightening Ridge is a small mining town Located 768 km from Sydney and 72 km north of Walgett in NSW, in Australia. It has a population of around 1200 but over 80,000 visitors or tourists each year coming to try their luck at mining opals or just to see what a mining town looks like. Gets. It is considered one of the richest deposits of black opals in the world.
Opals were discovered in Lightening Ridge around 1895 and some of the best and most beautiful opals have been found there. The original name of Lightening Ridge is Wallangulla, a local aboriginal name. It was changed when a local drover sheltered under a local ridge during a storm and the ridge was struck by lightening killing the drover, his dog and 600 sheep at the time.
Between 1987 and 1993 over 48 million dollars worth of opals have been mined and it is thought that there are still plenty more to come.
When buying Lightening Ridge Opals you will want to be sure they are authentic Lightening Ridge so make sure you get a certificate from the dealer or seller to state that. If you are going to Lightening Ridge you can be pretty sure the opals you buy will be from the local area.
But buying opals from a jeweler or dealer and, especially on line such as in an auction for example, you want some guarantee that the opals you are buying are genuine Lightening Ridge opals.
When buying online seek out those sellers who are based in Lightening Ridge. Check the contact details and see if the address is in or around Lightening Ridge. This is easy as the name ‘Lightening Ridge” will been in the address. But not all opal sellers are in Lightening Ridge. Many are in Sydney or other parts of Australia. N that case ask for some authentication of the fact that the opal(s) are from Lightening Ridge.
In all cases it is advisable to do due diligence when buying Lightening Ridge opals.