Whistler Springs Rockhounding Site is hidden deep in the beautiful ponderosa pine forest of the Ochoco Mountain, 50 miles away from Prineville. The area is featured on the Central Oregon Rockhounding Map which is available for purchase.
The collecting site is bounded from the southern end by Mill Creek Wilderness where digging is not allowed. Watch boundary fence and signs.
There are two digging sites. Both sites produce agate-filled thundereggs, typically, ranging in size from apricots to large apples. Also, jasper, agate, and petrified wood can be found. Look where other rockhounds have been digging for possible leads. You can find a lot of material left behind by other rockhounds. For the best materials, dig through rhyolite matrix with a shovel, gad, chisel, and hammer. This might be challenging but definitely will yield decent t-eggs.
Site 1 and site 2 are situated 0.1 miles of each other and 0.5 miles away from Whistler Springs Campground. There are many standing dead trees in the area. Be careful where you walk or set your camp.
Wildcat Trail (#833) running through the eastern portion of Mill Creek Wilderness starts from the Wildcat North Trailhead (parking area) near Site 1.
The road to Whistler Springs is rough, bumpy, and muddy when wet. Four-Wheel Drive is recommended. Recreational vehicles and trailers are not recommended.
Whistler Springs | General Description
Open: Best time: May-October
Managed: US Forest Service
Location: Ochoco National Forest
Rocks & Minerals: Thundereggs, agate, jasper, and petrified wood
Tools: Shovel, gad, chisel, geology pick, and hammer
Activities: Rockhounding, camping, and hiking
Accommodations: Camping is allowed in the Ochoco National Forest; Whistler Springs Campground
Distance from the parking: Vary
Road access: A high-clearance 4WD vehicle is suggested
Day-use fees: None
Popularity: Low to moderate
Elevation: 5,600 ft (1,707 m)
Whistler Springs is located:
- 37 miles northeast of Prineville
- 73 miles northeast of Bend
- 186 miles southeast of Portland.