The calendar may indicate that it is fall, but “snowflakes” are
already piling up at the Royal Canadian Mint.
Four of five winter-themed Proof .9999 fine silver $20 coins
released Sept. 1 feature crystal snowflakes in their designs. The only
piece not depicting snowflakes depicts a Christmas tree, and it too
With the Sept. 1 release of the four Crystal Snowflake coins, the
RCM both continues and expands upon a series that began in 2006.
Differing numbers of Swarovski crystals are embedded on each coin at
various points on a snowflake or snowflakes in the series. The coin
designs change annually.
The inaugural coin in the series was a Proof gold $300 coin. The
series was expanded in 2007 with the addition of a Proof silver $20
coin, each featuring a single snowflake with multiple crystals. The
RCM in 2011 debuts a new series, offering a Small Crystal Snowflake
coin bearing a design with multiple, smaller snowflakes.
The standard 2011 Crystal Snowflake $20 coins are available in two
versions bearing the same snowflake design, one with an emerald
crystal and the other with a topaz crystal. Each standard 2011 coin
bears seven crystals: either the topaz or emerald at the center, and
six clear crystals arrayed about on the six branches of the design’s snowflake.
The 2011 Small Crystal Snowflake $20 coin bears a design with
multiple, smaller snowflakes, each coin sporting either three colorful
Montana crystals or Hyacinth crystals in (the former blue in color and
the latter an orange-red color).
Konrad Wachelko designed the reverses of both designs of the 2011
Crystal Snowflake $20 coins, as he has done for the previous Crystal
Snowflake coins. All the 2010 and earlier issues have sold out,
according to the RCM.
Also offered this year is a silver $20 coin from the holiday
program, the 2011 issue celebrating the Christmas tree. It is the
fourth design in a holiday program of Proof silver $20 coins that
began in 2007. Previous issues in the series have shown a sleigh ride
scene, pine cones and more (no coin was issued for this series in 2009).
The Christmas Tree $20 coin, designed by Tony Bianco, shows a
decorated tree against a frosted and snow-covered windowpane backdrop,
five peridot crystals arranged on the tree. Gifts are piled on the
floor, below the tree branches, awaiting the joyous ceremony when
gifts will be exchanged.
All of the Proof .9999 fine silver $20 coins weigh 31.39 grams,
measure 38 millimeters in diameter and have a mintage limit of 15,000
pieces. Each coin is encapsulated and presented in a maroon clamshell
case lined with flock and protected by a black sleeve.
The Susanna Blunt effigy of Queen Elizabeth II appears on the
obverse of all of the Canadian coins.
Each coin retails for $114.95 in Canadian funds.
United States distributors for the RCM carry the various coins at
fixed prices in U.S. dollars. Gatewest Coin Ltd., Brian Jenner Inc.
and Talisman Coins are all official distributors for the RCM.
To contact Gatewest inside the United States, telephone the firm
at 204-489-9112 or visit it online at www.gatewestcoin.com.
Write to Jenner at P.O. Box 2466-a, Pasco, WA 99302, or telephone
him at 509-735-2172.
Visit Talisman at its website, found at www.talismancoins.com,
telephone the company at 888-552-2646 or fax the business at