The only producing diamond mine in the world where you can dig your own is right here in the U.S.A. Since 1906 people have been finding diamonds in Arkansas’ Crater of Diamonds State Park. One of the world’s few colorless, internally flawless diamonds, the Strawn-Wagner Diamond, was found at the Crater in 1990. Diamonds are not the only treasures to be found at the Crater of Diamonds State Park. There are also amethyst, garnet, jasper, agate, quartz, and more.
We spent three solid days, in mid-July, out on the diamond field. It was dirty, dusty and hot. On one of those days, the temperature soared to 115 degrees. There were constant warnings over the p.a. system to drink plenty of water and not over do it. If you plan on spending the day, it is well worth bringing a cooler and a pop-up to rest under. I recommend a rough terrain wagon to tote your supplies. You carry everything in. You carry everything out. If you don’t have the equipment, the park has a large assortment for rent and sale.
Gems can be found by walking up and down the plowed rows, scouring the field. Weather erosion frees the diamonds from the lamproite. After a rain, is a good time to search this in this manner. The rain washes the sediment from stones leaving them exposed.
If you really want to find some good stuff, be prepared to get down and dirty. We prefer the dig and sift method. All the hard-core, repeat visitors practice this method. It just seems more fun and adventurous.
You might want to bring some extra muscle to help carry out your treasure load. Each person is allowed to take a bucket of material out. It’s finders keepers and there are some nice finds on a regular basis at the Crater. Just not for me. I did, however, take plenty of raw material home with me to work through later.
We will definitely be back. After all, diamonds are a girl’s best friend, right?
Quartz Crystal Capital of the World – Digging Ouachita