Welcome to the Tourmaline Gallery!

The pictures in this site are taken by The Crystall-Pocket from minerals from our own collection or from private collections from friends and family and are displayed with permission. Copyright for all pictures by The Crystall-Pocket 2006 - 2007!

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The pictures can be used free of charge for private and educational purposes as long as you  mention the source.  For any other use, publication, or distribution in any form (print, film, digital or any other media) a written permission is required!

Links to other Rooms in our Virtual Mineral Museum:

Tourmaline Room - Garnet Room - Quartz Room
Topaz Room - Spodumen Room - Fine Minerals Room
Alpine Room - Namibia Room - Pakistan/Afghanistan Room

Multicolor Elbaite-Liddicoatit, Luc Yen  Recently, Vietnam has become an intersting and promising source of wonderful mineral specimen. In 2004 a pocket with pastell colored Tourmalines was hit in Luc Yen. The Tourmalines turned out to be Liddicoatit, and sometimes there is a core of Elbait. The specimen occur embedded in lithium mica (Lepidolit). Unfortunately, most touralines were removed from the matrix. The piece on the left was also violently broken off from the matrix. A lucky coincidence preserved the the matrix part with its large books of Lepidolith. The 2 halves finally found their way back together and were restored by Dana Gochenour. The Tourmaline alone was about 2 pounds. The inner part is Elbait, the outer part Liddicoatit. 

Red Liddicoatit, Luc Yen The picture on the right is from the same localityin VIetnam, just a year later: in 2005 a pocket with large, red Liddicoatits was hit in Luc Yen. The wonderful pieces were displayed for example at the mineral show in Munich in 2006. This piece was preserved in the matrix. Most intereting, when turned around one sees that very often there is Amazonite associated in the matrix, which can be of finest cutting quality in Luc Yen.  

Multicolor Elbaite, AracuaiElbait
from Aracuai (Brasil)

A multicolor Elbait starting from brwon-yellow, going into green with a wine red termination.
8 cm hight

Pink-Violett_Tourmaline BrasilElbait
from Minas Gerais (Brasil)

This about 6 cm high Elbait  tourmaline has an unusual combination of pink and violett hues (which are very difficult to capture in the photograph). 

Multicolor Elbaite, Afghanistan   
from Nuristan

A doubly terminated  Elbait of ~4.5 inches size with beautifull pastell colors.

Elbait Stak NalaElbait in Clevelandit
Stak Nala, Paklistan

Here is a tourmaline from
Stak Nala in Pakistan, which  is well known for its multicolored Elbait. The piece on the left is ~ 3 cm long and is surounde by white leafes of Clevelandite.  

Schörl, Erongo, NamibiaSchorl
Erongo, Namibia

An impressive crystal of Schorl (~ 2 pounds heavy), which has a fibrous termination. I was told that often in such fibrous terminations Schorl changes into Foitit, another variety of tourmaline.

Elbait from the Pamir Mountains 
Blue Cap Elbait
Pamir Mountains

This is one of our favourite Tourmalines: It comes from the Pamir Mountains and has an intense blue cap, which is crossed by several smaller pink tourmalines. There are also green and white tones present in this exceptionally colored crystal.

Tourmaline, Pamirs

Uvite, Brumbaro, BrasilienUvite, red
Brumado, Brasil

A 2 cm dark-wine red Uvite, which came out some years ago. 
Uvite on MagnesiteUvite, brown-red-green
Brumado, Brasil

An unusually large crystal (~ 3cm) of a brownish-green Uvite with Magnesite. Intersetingly, there are also some red hues present in this fine crystal. 

Indicolithe from the Pederneira Blue Tourmaline (Indicolith) with Lepidolith from the Pederneira Mine, Brazil.
This Indicolith has an electrifying blue colour, which is usually caused by iron ions. It is associated with Lepidolith, the lithium variant of mica, which is frequently found in lithium pegmatites. By its chemical nomenclature, this tourmaline is an Elbait, the lithium variant of tourmaline.  According to another nomenclature, which names tourmalines after their colour, it is called Indicolithe.

The specimen in this picuter is only little larger than 1 cm. The picture was taken with a Canon macro lense under complex light conditions. You can open a much larger picture by double-clicking this one.  

Himalaya Mine TourmalineTourmaline var. Elbait from the Himalaya Mine
San Diego County, Southern California

The Himalaya Mine has been producing gem tourmalines since the late 19th century and is famous for multi-coloured specimen. This one is a specimen with interesting color zoning, which may tell us something about its history: It appears that the crystal started growing as a  green tourmaline, which start growing at higher  temperatures than tourmalines with other colors. Then, because of the rapid change in color, I  think it might have been broken off and continued growing as red tourmaline. The multiple termination is called a city scape termination.   

Watermelone BrazilWater Melone Tourmaline
from unknown location.

Tourmalines with a red core and a a thin white and a green rim are called water melones - their cross section just looks like the fruit.


Turmaline, Brazil, Sapo Mine   
 Tourmaline var. Elbaite
from the Sappo Mine Minas Gerais, Brazil.

The Sappo Mine is famous for its  multi-colored tourmalines.  Almost all coloures of the rainbow are found: from red-pink over yellowish to geen with a blue cap. Wish it would be larger than 1 cm!!!

Schorl with Aquamarine, Pakistan

Schorl is a black tourmaline colored by iron. It is relatively common and can be found in many pegmetites. Nevertheless, it can form really fascinating crystals and very interesting combos with other minerals, such as the two pieces depicted here.

This is a Schorl with Aquamarine (Beryll) with textbook terminations.  
Schorl with Fluorite, PakistanSchorl with Fluorite in fine-bladed Clevelandite, a very esthetic specimen in our opinon.  

Uvite, BrazilUvite from Brumado, Brazil.

This is a magnesium rich tourmaline. Interstingly, while most tourmalines show a pronounced elongated crystal growth (the long axis is called c-axis), Uvite is found in crystal shapes that appear "compressed" along c.

Bicolored Tourmaline, NigeriaElbaite from Nigeria

Nigeria is a producer of very fine tourmalines, paricularly form the Jos-plateau. This crystal is also quite intersting. Is is kind of a smokey red color, with a thin green cap. Its surface is frosted on some faces, but the core is flawless.

Cryo Genie on Matrix
Tourmline (var. Elbait) on Lepidolith matrix from the Cryo Genie Mine Warner Springs, San Diego County California.
This is a nice tourmaline specimen on matrix. The entire specimen is a swimmer - it is crystallized all around. Take a closer look at the central crystal: at the bottom it fray´s out into several smaller crystalls. At the top the color changes into green, and the top forms kind of a szepter. The Cryo Genie has produced phantastic specimen of tourmaline, morganites, and other pegmatite minerals in the past few years. What only few know - Warner Springs was probably the first tourmaline occurence discovered during prospecting when rail-roads were first built to the west.    

Tricolor Elbait, Pakistan Tricolored Elbaite
 from Pakistan

~ 2 cm in length.

Tourmaline, Vietnam   
Tourmalines from Vietnam:
Green Tourmaline, Vietnam
Most people think of Burma, when they think of tourmalines from Eastern Asia. However, during the past few years Vietnam has produced spectracular tourmalines, which display a variety of colors. The first pockets were of pink and yellow-greenish color and exhibited almost mushroom like shapes. Most are accompanied by Lepidolithe and other Micas, which where however removed during mining in most cases. Only very few matrix pieces could be recovered. 
Red Tourmaline, Vietnam 2005Later dark green tourmalines with extremely shiny faces were found. Finally, in 2005 a pocket of red Liddicoatite was found. These tourmalines are of extremly fine red color and are considered to be among the best of the world.

Blue Cap, Tourmaline Queen, Pala Tourmalines from classic California locations.

Tourmaline Queen, Pala.

The Tourmaline Queen is famous for its Blue Caps, some of the finest of which were found by Bill Larson and colleagues in the 1970s.
Tourmaline, Himalaya Mine, Mesa Grande
Himalaya Mine
Mesa Grande

 The Himalaya Mine, which was also mined by Bill Larson, produced tourmalines for well over 100 years. Himalaya tourmalines come in pink, green, and some contain actually the rainbow (Rainbow pocket)
Hot Pink Tourmaline, Stewart Mine, Pala, CAStewart Mine

The Stewart Mine, actually very close to the Tourmaline Queen in Pala, is most famous for pink tourmaline sprays frozen in lilac Lepidolithe, and for a unique hot-pink.

Bent Tourmaline, Pabrok, Afghanistan   Elbait
Pabrok, Afghanistan

Bent pink tourmaline from Pabrol, Afghanistan. A very interesting doubly terminated piece: first, it has a clear cap on the otherwise gemmy pink crystal, second, the smaller attachted crystal is heavily bent. How can this happen? Well, the crystals as we know them are solid - but they are not when they are formed under great heat and pressure. Under these conditions  a crystal can be bend, e.g. by geological events. Often this leads to fractured in the crystal which can be filled with tourmaline or other minerals, such as feldspar, again. This in turn leads to striations, which are often seen for example in Himalaya specimen as white "bands" in the crystal.

Red Tourmaline, MadagaskarTourmaline

A deep red tourmaline, either Elbait or Liddicoatit
  (~ 1 cm).

Black Tourmaline with pink-green Cap Black Tourmaline ( ~10 cm in diameter) with a Pink and Green Top from Teofilo Otoni, Brazil
The carefull visitor of our page will notice that we have not called this black tourmaline a Schörl. Well, that is because black is not always black. The coloured termination is indicative of an Elbaite variety. However, very often the colours become very intense and cannot be penetrated by light. Then, even a coloured tourmaline appears black. Such dark specimen are always a challenge for the photographer!

Mushroom Tourmaline, Mogok   "Mushroom" Tourmaline
from Mogok, Burma

It is quite obvious why these are called mushroom tourmalines. This here is a small example of a relatively translucent specimen. Most often these specimen have a dark (black) core, eventually Schörl, and a colored Elbaite coating.

Tricolor Tourmaline, Pabroktricolored Tourmaline
from Pabrok, Afghanistan.

Very nice green-2-blue-2-clear specimen, doubly terminated, about 6 cm tall.

Mutlicolored TourmalineMulticoloured Tourmaline
from unknown location.

Colour changes in tourmalines are caused by a change in the chemistry of growth solution. This one had quite a number of changes in solution chemistry!

Please visit us again - we will add more rooms to our gallery ....
Links to other Rooms in our Virtual Mineral Museum:

Tourmaline Room - Garnet Room - Quartz Room
Topaz Room - Spodumen Room - Fine Minerals Room
Alpine Room - Namibia Room - Pakistan/Afghanistan Room