Mining is a skill that allows players to obtain ores and gems from rocks found throughout the world. These materials can either be sold for profit or used for other skills such as Crafting and Smithing - it links into Smithing quite well as you would expect.
Mining as a skill is odd due to the fact that its potential for profit peaks at level 30 from the ability to mine Pure Essence (after Rune Mysteries), everything you can mine after that is weaker in comparison to getting a lot of Pess if you're simply after money (or looking to Runecraft a lot of course). If you're looking to level Smithing alongside Mining, however, you will level a lot faster in comparison to only doing Pure Essence at the cost of worse profitability, and because this is a guide for 99ing the skill that's exactly what'll be written in the Training section.
In order to be able to mine something, meet the following requirements:
- Have a pickaxe equipped or in the inventory of which you have the mining level to use. Higher tiers are better to mine faster.
- Have the minimum required mining level for the rock you're trying to mine. Higher is better to mine it faster.
- Find a rock which you can mine. Click on it. Simple.
A common mining technique is known as Powermining - this is simply dropping your ores as you mine them rather than bank them to sell or smith later. Obviously this emphasizes pure mining gains, so keep it in mind if you want 99 mining and nothing else. Otherwise, Powermining is less recommended.
Buy all the pickaxes you'll be using from Nurmof in the northern section of the Dwarven Mines under Falador. Watch out for the level 14 scorpions if you're below a combat level of 29. It is highly recommended to get an Attack level of 40 (done easiest via the quests listed on the Beginner's Guide) if you don't have it already, as equipping your pickaxe while mining obviously frees up an inventory slot for slightly more efficient mining.
There are no Black or Dragon pickaxes in /v/scape, the table isn't missing anything.
These are most of the possible ores you can get from mining rocks throughout the world. Some of them are for quests only, and the best locations for the ones you'll be mining will be explained below in the Training section. As stated on the Differences page as well, the respawn times for some of them have been changed from Realscape because /v/scape has only 1 world/there is no worldhopping - changed respawn times are in bold.
Also note that you have a very low random chance to obtain an uncut sapphire, emerald, ruby, or diamond when mining most rocks (NOT from Gem Rocks). The chances for a gem drop are increased when wearing any piece of charged Dragonstone jewelry (Combat Bracelet/Skills Necklace/Amulet of Glory only). The chance may also be slightly higher than normal with coal rocks, though this is unconfirmed.
An ore not listed on the table is the Elemental Ore from the Elemental Workshop quest, because it gives no exp when mined despite requiring 20 Mining.
It is recommended to complete all these quests before you start training, as they will boost you to 42 Mining altogether which gives the ability to mine most rocks and to use a Rune pickaxe quite easily. Otherwise, look below in the Training section.
If you've done all the recommended quests in the above section's table and have beefed your levels up considerably, then scroll right down past the first section. You're going to at least want to Doric's Quest to get 15+ Mining (it brings you to level 16 from 1), otherwise you'll be leveling slower than you could be. Doric's Quest can be easily completed without mining anything too, if you acquire what you need from other players.
Levels 1-15 : Copper/Tin
Copper and Tin are near-useless ores and are basically just for leveling up right now. They can be found in the Lumbridge Swamp mine (south of Lumbridge Castle on the coast) or in the southeast Varrock mine (on the outer part of the southeast corner of the city), it doesn't really matter and you'll need to make multiple trips either way.
You can either bank the Copper and Tin for some Smithing exp later or just Powermine and ignore them as 31 Copper+Tin ores are rather negligible.
Start off with an Iron Pickaxe, then when you reach level 6 switch to your Steel Pickaxe.
It takes 62 Copper/Tin to reach level 15. Recommended to get 31 of each and smelt them together into Bronze bars if you're banking the ores.You can utilize the lack of cooldown on the Lumbridge Home Teleport spell in order to bank a bit faster from the mine instead of having to run back each time.
The southeast Varrock mine is slightly better for banking speed.
Levels 15/16/42-60 : Iron
Iron can become the majority of what people mine to get 99 as it is rather fast to acquire, but it is more recommended to not focus purely on it as you will miss out on Smithing experience and greater profitability. Instead you'll be mining it until level 60, why that number in particular is explained in the Conclusion section. Even if you're into Powermining, there's another, better rock to Powermine than Iron once you reach level 60.
The best place to mine and bank iron is north of Yanille on the coast, south of Port Khazard. Simply run back and forth down to Yanille's bank from the mine when your inventory is full.
If you wish to Powermine instead, use a place where Iron rocks are clustered closer together such as the Al Kharid mine or Piscatoris mine, it doesn't matter if they're far from a bank as you'll be dropping the ores anyway with this method. Like stated in the intro of the guide, remember that Powermining is less recommended if you want to do more than just gain Mining levels.
Once you reach level 21/31/41, switch to using your Mithril/Adamant/Rune pickaxes respectively. There is no greater tier of pickaxe than Rune, so unlike Woodcutting you do not have to invest a lot of money into the best tool for the skill.
In order to reach level 60 from 15, you need to mine approximately 3,445 Iron ore.
If you've done only Doric's quest and are at level 16 Mining, then ~3,436 Iron ore is needed for level 60.
If you've done all the recommended quests for Mining exp and are at level 42 Mining, you only need to mine ~2,861 iron ore to reach level 60.Yanille's mine is best for banking iron.
The Al Kharid and Piscatoris mines are equally good for Powermining Iron.
Watch out for the level 14 scorpions around the Al Kharid mine.
Remember to bring 50gp to enter Piscatoris (or a Ring of Charos (a)), and to see the map on the Fishing guide for how to get there.
Levels 60-99 : Gold or Coal or Gem Rocks or Granite
There are four possible routes you can take for 99 at this point. 60 is best to start them all at even though you can mine them as early as 30/40/40/45, this is explained in the Conclusion section.
In conclusion, Mining is quite the slow skill that can be difficult to train. Its unpopularity is rather odd due to the fact that the majority of players level it to at least 30 for Pure Essence, but only a select few 99 it unlike other unpopular skills which most people just don't touch. Here's hoping this guide has helped you overcome the hurdle of training it!
What To Do With Your Materials
You're going to be Smithing all the ores you've collected and banked. If you're a Powerminermemer or would rather sell your ores for cash to other players, disregard this section. This is a great source of Smithing exp though so again, Powermining is not recommended.
The best place to smelt ores is in Port Phasmatys (with at least 64 Agility or Priest in Peril completed to get there, 10 Ectotokens to enter the Port if Ghosts Ahoy is not completed), second best is in Al Kharid if you don't meed those requirements.
The best place to smith bars into various other objects is in Varrock, a shack with anvils in it is just a few steps south of the western bank. If you somehow forgot from Tutorial Island, Use a metal bar on an anvil with a hammer in your inventory to smith things.
It is highly recommended to do The Knight's Sword quest, as it will level you up from 1 to 37 Smithing upon completion. This will allow you to smith at least all Bronze and Iron items to utilize the ores you got and not have to waste your time training Smithing more than you have to. The Knight's Sword can be easily completed without mining anything too, if you acquire what you need from other players.
"Why Mine Iron Immediately When Available? / Why Not Mine Everything Else Immediately When Available?"
Unlike in guides such as Woodcutting or Fishing, Mining is more like Thieving in the sense that it's alright to immediately go for your next training target when available as the experience rates aren't that bad then - but ONLY for Iron. You still wait until 60 for Gold, Coal, etc, rather than doing them right when you're able to. 60 mining for Coal in particular is quite nice as that's right when you can enter the Mining Guild too, which is the best place to mine Coal.
"Why Not Ever Mine Mithril/Adamantite/Runite?"
While these ores may result in great profitability when smithed, they aren't important to this guide as while simply training Mining those ores are quite slow to acquire and therefore not good for experience - even with the lower adjusted respawn times.