People can sift through pay dirt using a set of screens at Crater of Diamonds State Park in Arkansas. When immersed in water, the finer materials wash away, and coarser rocks caught in the metal mesh become visible. Sometimes, diamonds come to light.
It was here that a regular visitor managed to find his first diamond weighing more than 2 carats, the largest one found at the park this year.
What are the details?
Adam Hardin managed to uncover his first diamond at the East Drain of the 37.5-acre soil area dedicated to searching.
The gemstone is rough-shaped and has a coffee bean color. It's the size of a pinto bean and tops all other diamonds found at the park in Murfreesboro, Arkansas.
"It was just in the middle when I flipped my screen over. As soon as I saw it, I said, 'Wow, that's a big diamond!'" Hardin shared with local park officials, according to The Epoch Times.
Hardin also got to name his diamond, following a long-standing tradition at the state park. He decided to call it "Frankenstone" because of its unusual appearance.
"I thought of this name because it has a pretty and kind of not-so-pretty look to it. Us diamond miners call that 'character,'" Hardin explained.
This wasn't first-time luck for the man, though. He's been digging for diamonds for more than ten years. And his quest for gemstones has also made him more competitive in several contests with the park's regular visitors.
"Some of the other guys and I have been going back and forth, seeing who can find the biggest diamond. I found a big one, and then he got a 1.79-carat; we were joking about who would find the next big gem and be 'king of the mountain.' So, as soon as I found this one, I had a feeling I'd won. Now he's trying to recover a bigger one, but I'm planning on staying on top!" Hardin shared.
Wayman Cox, who works at the park, revealed that "wet sifting" while using a set of screens with various sizes is a favorite method among visitors to quickly sort gravel according to size and get rid of any loose dirt.
Heavy diamonds will settle on the screen's bottom when using the technique properly. Then, after it's flipped over, the diamonds will be on top of the pile.
"Mr. Hardin's diamond is the size of a pinto bean, with a coffee-brown color and a rounded shape. It's got a metallic shine that is typical of all diamonds found at the park; a few inclusions and crevices run along the surface," Cox explained.
The park also revealed that Hardin usually sells the diamonds he finds locally, and that's his plan for this one too.
Hardin's diamond is the biggest that turned up at the park since September last year, when a yellow 4.38-carat gem was found in the search area by a visitor who lives in Granite Bay, California.
As for same-color diamonds, the Frankenstone is the largest one removed from the Arkansas park since the 9.07-carat Kinard Friendship Diamond found on Labor Day two years ago.
Over 260 diamonds have been registered this year at the park, which totals more than 44 carats in weight. The average discovery ranges between 1 to 2 diamonds picked up by visitors each day.
Since John Huddleston discovered the precious gems in 1906, over 75,000 diamonds have turned up at the park. The farmer had owned this land before it was turned into a state park in 1972.
The largest diamond uncovered in the U.S. was plucked during early mining operations in 1924. It was a white diamond weighing 40.23 carats, named Uncle Sam. The gem was later cut into a 12.42-carat emerald shape and sold to a private collector.