2.2-carat diamond discovered by a man from Washington, Arkansas.
Continuing his five-year quest to make his own engagement ring, Christian Liden met the ultimate discovery earlier this month.
Liden, a 26-year-old Poulsbo, Wash. Native, had already accumulated enough gold while exploring in his home state. His search for a stone to put between that gold led him to the Crater of Diamonds State Park in Murfreesboro, Arkansas, located about 2,300 miles from his hometown.
And what better place for Liden to find a gem than in one of the few places where the public can search for diamonds in their original volcanic source?
Liden and a friend built their own mining equipment and spent three days at the 37-acre site in search of the gemstone, according to Arkansas State Parks. Finally, he discovered the gemstone during wet sieving.
“I saw it glow as soon as I turned the screen over and immediately knew it was a diamond,” Liden said, according to the park. “I was shaking so much that I asked my mate to take it out of the gravel for me!”
The find was a 2.20-carat yellow diamond – the largest diamond found in the park this year, the park said.
Dru Edmonds, deputy park superintendent, described the diamond as being triangular in shape with “a sparkling metallic luster.” It contains very little material trapped inside.
Liden said his goal was to find smaller stones in the park and buy the center stone later. His discovery profoundly altered his plans.
“As beautiful as this diamond is, I think the best part is the story behind it,” Edmonds said in a press release. “Since the eighth grade, Mr. Liden has dreamed of creating a special ring for his future wife, with stones and gold that he mined himself. And now he can make that dream come true!
More than 33,000 diamonds have been found in the park since 1972. Park policy is “seekers, keepers,” which means visitors can keep whatever they find.