NATIONAL NEWS

Visitor finds huge 7.46-carat diamond in Crater of Diamonds State Park

Jan 29, 2024, 8:02 AM

The 7.46-carat diamond discovered by Julien Navas, of Paris, France, upon his visit to the Crater o...

The 7.46-carat diamond discovered by Julien Navas, of Paris, France, upon his visit to the Crater of Diamonds State Park in Arkansas on Jan. 11. (Courtesy Arkansas State Parks)

(Courtesy Arkansas State Parks)

(CNN) — A spur-of-the-minute detour led to a “real great adventure” for a Parisian visitor to the United States.

Julien Navas, who was visiting the U.S. from France to see the launch of the first U.S. moon landing mission in decades from Cape Canaveral, Florida, also ventured to New Orleans. Along the way, learned about the Crater of Diamonds State Park in Arkansas, according to a news release from Arkansas State Parks.

Having panned for gold and searched for ammonite fossils before, and the park caught his interest.

On Jan. 11, Navas arrived at the park, bought his ticket, and rented a basic diamond hunting kit, according to the news release.

“I got to the park around nine o’clock and started to dig,” Navas said in the release. “That is back-breaking work, so by the afternoon I was mainly looking on top of the ground for anything that stood out.”

Lucky for Navas, the park had received more than an inch of rain a few days before he arrived, so it was wet and muddy, the release said.

“As rain falls on the field, it washes away the dirt and uncovers heavy rocks, minerals and diamonds near the surface,” Assistant Park Superintendent Waymon Cox explained.

Many of the park’s biggest diamonds are found on the surface, Cox said, and the park periodically plows the 37.5-acre search area to loosen the soil and to promote natural erosion.

Eventually, Navas emerged at the park’s Diamond Discovery Center with his findings. There, he was told he had found a 7.46-carat brown diamond.

Navas said he was stunned, according to the release, and said all he could think about was telling his fiancé what he had found. The stone is deep chocolate brown and rounded like a marble, according to the release, and is about the size of a candy gumdrop.

Navas named his diamond the Carine Diamond, after his fiancé, and plans to have the stone divided into two diamonds, one to gift to his bride-to-be and the other for his daughter.

The Carine Diamond is the eighth-largest diamond found in the Crater of Diamonds since it became a state park in 1972, according to the news release. On average, park visitors find one or two diamonds there every day. The diamonds formed hundreds of millions of years ago, some 60 to 100 miles underground.

Geologists explained about 100 million years ago, there was a volcanic eruption, which carried the diamonds to the surface, according to the park’s website.

Navas called the park a “magical place, where the dream of finding a diamond can come true! It was a real great adventure.” Navas said he hopes to come back to the park with his daughter when she is older.

KSL 5 TV Live

National News

Tropical Storm Alberto has formed in the southwestern Gulf of Mexico, the first named storm of what...

Jaime stengle and Mariana Martinez Barba

Tropical Storm Alberto forms in southwest Gulf, 1st named storm of the hurricane season

Tropical Storm Alberto has formed in the southwestern Gulf of Mexico, the first named storm of what is forecast to be a busy hurricane season.

2 hours ago

An air tanker soars through a large plume of smoke over and around wildfire-affected areas in the v...

MORGAN LEE Associated Press

At least 1 dead in New Mexico wildfire that forced thousands to flee, governor’s office says

Thousands of southern New Mexico residents fled a mountainous village as a wind-whipped wildfire tore through homes and other buildings.

4 hours ago

SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA - JUNE 19: People watch a television broadcast reporting a meeting between North...

Kim Tong-Hyung

Russia and North Korea sign partnership deal that appears to be the strongest since the Cold War

Russian President Vladimir Putin and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un have signed a new partnership that includes a vow of mutual aid if either country faces “aggression.”

4 hours ago

FILE: Members of Reedy Chapel African Methodist Episcopal Church march to celebrate Juneteenth on J...

Terry Tang

The beginner’s guide to celebrating Juneteenth

Many Americans are celebrating Juneteenth, marking the day in 1865 when the last enslaved people in the U.S. learned they were free.

5 hours ago

The Olympic rings at the Utah Olympic Park in Park City on Monday, Nov. 27, 2023. The Salt Lake Cit...

Amy Simonson and Eric Levenson, CNN

Woman accuses former Olympic swim coach of sexually abusing her as a teen and USA Swimming of failing to stop it

A former high-level swimmer accused her Hall of Fame coach of sexually abusing her about 15 years ago when she was a minor and alleged USA Swimming and other organizations and individuals knew about the abuse and did nothing to stop it, according to a federal lawsuit.

15 hours ago

SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA - SEPTEMBER 29: Former San Francisco Giants player Willie Mays waves duri...

Kevin Dotson and Wayne Sterling, CNN

Baseball icon Willie Mays, one of the game’s most electrifying and complete players, has died at 93

Willie Mays, the dynamic baseball Hall of Famer who shined in all facets of the game and made a dramatic catch in the 1954 World Series, has passed away at the age of 93, the San Francisco Giants announced on social media Tuesday.

18 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Photo courtesy of Artists of Ballet West...

Ballet West

The rising demand for ballet tickets: why they’re harder to get

Ballet West’s box office is experiencing demand they’ve never seen before, leaving many interested patrons unable to secure tickets they want.

Electrician repairing ceiling fan with lamps indoors...

Lighting Design

Stay cool this summer with ceiling fans

When used correctly, ceiling fans help circulate cool and warm air. They can also help you save on utilities.

Side view at diverse group of children sitting in row at school classroom and using laptops...

PC Laptops

5 internet safety tips for kids

Read these tips about internet safety for kids so that your children can use this tool for learning and discovery in positive ways.

Women hold card for scanning key card to access Photocopier Security system concept...

Les Olson

Why printer security should be top of mind for your business

Connected printers have vulnerable endpoints that are an easy target for cyber thieves. Protect your business with these tips.

Modern chandelier hanging from a white slanted ceiling with windows in the backgruond...

Lighting Design

Light up your home with these top lighting trends for 2024

Check out the latest lighting design trends for 2024 and tips on how you can incorporate them into your home.

Technician woman fixing hardware of desktop computer. Close up....

PC Laptops

Tips for hassle-free computer repairs

Experiencing a glitch in your computer can be frustrating, but with these tips you can have your computer repaired without the stress.

Visitor finds huge 7.46-carat diamond in Crater of Diamonds State Park