Dan Frederick and his daughter, Lauren, traveled all the way from Renton, Washington, to Crater of Diamonds State Park in Arkansas in search of treasure. The experienced gem-hunters say they've searched half the country looking for sapphires, garnets and agates, but they've always wanted to dig for diamonds.
Less than one hour after they arrived at the public park on Oct. 3, the Fredericks spotted a 2.03-carat lying right on the ground, only three feet from where Dan was standing.
On average, two people find diamonds at the park each day, but they're not usually this big. “Dan Frederick has proven, once again, that it is possible to find large, beautiful diamonds while surface searching. This is an example of a diamond that all park visitors dream of taking home," park official Betty Coors said in a press release.
That they found it so quickly is astounding, as diamonds are spread out over 37.5 acres of the park, which is the world's only diamond-producing site open to the public. However, the press release explains that larger diamonds are occasionally found on top of the search area because diamonds are heavy for their size, and when rain washes dirt away, they can be exposed. And when the sun shines, they sparkle and are easier to spot.
The Fredericks named their find the "Lucky Diamond." Coors described it as "pearly white in color" with "a distinct triangular shape that results when two diamond crystals share part of the same structure during formation deep within the earth."
Visitors to Crater of Diamonds State Park get to keep whatever they find, and the Fredericks will be hanging onto their treasure. While its worth depends on its clarity, cut, color and carat, at the very least it's worth more than their $16 admission.
"It really was the cherry on top of a fun and special trip with my dad," Lauren said. "Finding the diamond will be one of my favorite memories, especially since my dad and I found it together."