French tourist strikes luck in Arkansas park, discovers 8th largest diamond ever
Julian Navas, a Frenchman, traveled to the United States to witness the launch of the Vulcan Centaur rocket in Cape Canaveral, Florida. Accompanied by a friend, they extended their visit to New Orleans while they were still in the country. There, they learned about the Crater of Diamonds State Park in Arkansas.
The Crater of Diamonds is one of the few places globally where the public has access. Visitors can participate in diamond hunting across a field spanning approximately 37 acres. Any diamonds found can be taken home as keepsakes. Intrigued by this opportunity, Navas decided to test his luck.
He visited the park on January 11. Like any visitor to the park, he purchased a ticket and rented the necessary equipment for diamond hunting.
"I arrived at the park around nine in the morning and started digging. It was hard work, so in the afternoon, I mostly searched for anything that stood out on the surface," Navas shared about his experience.
The efforts were rewarding. Navas found a 7.5-karat diamond
Navas was fortunate, as a rainstorm had occurred over the park before his visit. According to park employee Waymon Cox, rain actually favors diamond seekers. "When it rains on the field, it washes away dirt, exposing heavy rocks, minerals, and potentially diamonds located near the surface," Cox said, explaining how this aids the searching process.
Cox further noted that the largest diamonds discovered in the park were found on the surface. The situation was no different for Navas. He spotted something shimmering and when he took his find to the discovery center, it turned out he had found a 7.5-carat brown diamond.
Navas named his diamond Carine, after his significant other. He has plans to split the diamond into two parts. One piece will go to Carine, while the other will be gifted to his daughter. Interestingly enough, the diamond discovered by the French visitor is the eighth largest diamond ever found in the park.
Navas thoroughly enjoyed his unique discovery and the park itself. He announced his intentions to revisit the park with his daughter when she's older. "It's a magical place where dreams of finding a diamond can come true. It was truly a wonderful adventure," he expressed.