Glass Buttes: Obsidian Collection

77 miles East of Bend, on Highway 20 lies Glass Buttes, a geological wonderland literally speckled with ancient volcanic glass. The area is one of the largest Obsidian collection sites in the North West. Native American’s have been accessing The Buttes for centuries.  Artifacts from this area have been identified as far north as British Columbia and South into Northern California. The land is currently owned by The BLM and some areas have been leased to a private company for geothermic exploration (drilling).

Glass buttes is a bimodal volcanic complex that erupted 5.5 million years ago! The buttes are a fairly navigable area and consists of Big Glass (6,300 ft) and Little Glass (6,200 ft). Primitive camping is allowed here, there were quite a few established spots with rock fire pits.  The glass can mostly be found on the surface of the ground, larger pieces can be dug for at established digging sites.

Glass Buttes, Oregon
Muddy day at Glass Buttes, Oregon
Obsidian Chips on ground
Midnight Lace Obsidian from Glass Buttes
Snowflake Obsidian
Double Flow, Mahogany, and Black Obsidian
Raw Oregon Rainbow Obsidian

From Bend travel  East on highway 20, Take a left at mile post 77 and travel the dirt road to several different collection sites. I would reccomend bringing gloves, shovels, a pry bar, and a large tupperware container.

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