Washington man finds 2-carat diamond at Crater of Diamonds State Park
[May 30, 2021: Josh Shavit]
A Washington man found a two-carat diamond during his third day hunting for them at Crater of Diamonds State Park, according to a release from the park.
Christian Liden, 26, of Poulsbo, Washington, said he wanted to find the raw materials to make his own engagement ring.
Linden said he started by panning for gold around his home state. After five years, he had accumulated enough money for the ring. He then decided to travel to Arkansas to collect gemstones for his creation.
Liden and a longtime friend left Washington on May 1. They built their own mining equipment for the search and tested it at a Montana sapphire mine along the way. The friends arrived at Arkansas’ Crater of Diamonds State Park on May 7.
“We spent about an hour in the field that afternoon and returned early the next morning to mine all day,” Liden said.
On his third day at the park, Liden said he was wet sifting when he finally spotted what he was looking for. “I saw it shining as soon as I turned the screen over and immediately knew it was a diamond. I was shaking so bad, I asked my buddy to grab it out of the gravel for me!” Liden placed the gem in a plastic bag and carried it to the park’s Diamond Discovery Center, where staff confirmed he had found a large, yellow diamond.
Weighing 2.20 carats, Liden’s diamond is the largest found at the park since last October, when a visitor from Fayetteville discovered a 4.49-carat yellow diamond. He found it in dirt from the West Drain of the park’s 37.5-acre diamond search area, the surface of an ancient, diamond-bearing volcanic pipe.
After leaving the Crater of Diamonds, Liden plans to mine for opals in Nevada before returning home. Once he proposes, Liden says he wants to design an engagement ring with his bride-to-be using his diamond and other gemstones collected along his cross-country mining quest.
121 diamonds have been registered at Crater of Diamonds State Park in 2021, weighing more than 20 carats. An average of one to two diamonds are found by park visitors each day.
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