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Red_desert

Prairie Creek Lamproite Ore

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I have some photos ready, from my trip last month (Oct 20-Nov 3) to Crater of Diamonds state park. The diamond pipe there is called the "Prairie Creek volcano". The older lady geologist, showed me a geological map from a recent geological survey. Once believed to be just 1 diamond pipe, it actually has 2 additional from after eruptions.

So, the SW corner of the mine field has an outcrop beneath the surface coming into the park mine field. These photos are all one of the hard specimens. I brought back a box full of the soft weathering, then an assortment of specimens still solid. A couple have large weathered olivine crystal (light color) inclusions.

Most look like this specimen, showing close ups of fractured and not fractured surfaces also.

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Here is some of the soft weathered ore, you can break it easy....if you have strong hands.

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Red Desert, I'm learnin here, question So this ore in the pics is that where you find the diamonds within the ore itself ?????

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All you need now is a few pickup trucks full of that ore to take home and you might find a diamond in it. :rolleyes:

Steve

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Red Desert, I'm learnin here, question So this ore in the pics is that where you find the diamonds within the ore itself ?????

Yes, it is the rock which supplies the field with diamonds as the ore weathers.

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All you need now is a few pickup trucks full of that ore to take home and you might find a diamond in it. :rolleyes:

Steve

You're absolutely right about needing a pickup truck, my Pontiac Grand Prix, after packing gear, stuff for the trip, not much room left to haul back mineral finds. I was thinking of trading the car in for a truck if going on a prospecting trip again to Arizona, had to do some road improvement on some access roads just to get through to park.

I had to yank some stuff out of a box, put a black trash bag as a liner inside, fill with the weathering soft ore. This soft stuff the mine companies put on piles, then stirred for diamonds except a groundhog table greased for trapping them was used in the shack..

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Go for it!!!! You never know... Might find a 15 carat flawless D in that first pile. On the other and, you may never find one......'

Steve

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I was wondering about those polished slices you see, on specimen websites with diamond ores from South Africa, Northwest Territory, etc. I don't have the equipment, tools, some rockhounds do....I've seen $30-$35 for polished slices of lamproite that can fit into 2x2" plastic holder. It depends on whether the people getting them are in schools, for educational purposes or if mineral collectors buy them. At least in gold prospecting, if you would sell on ebay, there wouldn't be problems or uncertainty about it.. Anyway, don't have plans for that, even though got some nice hard specimens.

Always thought it would be neat to get into gemstone cutting, until that happens keep collecting stuff good to cut. Got the cutting grade photographed now (below).

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Oh yeah, looks like they did, that was after I was back home again. Most of those big diamonds are found when you get a real heavy downpour, washing out even small gullies across the road that runs through the field. I'd heard the big one found last April was actually down in the wash out in the road. Some people dig spots for to put boards down in the washes if they know it will rain heavy, what is called a diamond trap. Diamonds are the heaviest mineral at the crater and tend to be washed downhill, same as gold does.

I saw one person using a probe to find pockets of gravel along the small washes there, then dig it out to process. Others check the bottom edge of dry furrows with a much smaller probe to find small dry pockets of gravel. Furrows are done over as needed, usually from a different direction....so dry furrow pockets only are there if it rains a couple times since new furrows made.

There is a lady I talked with, she along with her husband had been making trips to the crater 4 years before their 1st diamond find. They have a condo in Hot Springs (another in Florida), drive down every day. He dug 4 buckets of dirt from that gully, the low area along the edge next to the woods in the far SW corner. Four buckets with 1 diamond find.

There is supposed to be someone who actually had vials to carry around, showing off raw diamonds taken from the end of SW gully. That lady said all their digging now is always done there, just dig straight down. Apparently it used to have water in it, the park expanded the search area a little to drain off water. The nice thing about it, stays fairly dry now after rains, more like a dry wash in the desert. The east wash, SE area of the mine field, stays wet. I saw a guy digging right in the middle, had to go for hip waders. You still are required to fill in your holes, that would be messy. I'll bet the other wash that crosses the road was made by the park to divert water from the SW corner.

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Some people claim to actually make a living by finding diamonds at that park. I just find that very hard to believe unless you are living in a tent and eat nothing but beans. Seriously though - "making a living?" I say no way... The idea of deriving all of a persons income from mining diamonds is pretty far fetched. I can see people going down there and a daily basis and getting lucky every now and then but that's all.

Steve

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I talked to people who stay for 3 months, at the RV park which is a ways,down the highway. Didn't meet anybody claiming to earn a living at the crater. I saw people walk out of there saying "I'll never come back here again". Most visitors don't find any kind of diamond. A gold prospector who camped a couple night next to me in the tent area, said that it would be easier to find diamonds in southern Indiana. He lives in Kentucky, but belongs to a GPAA chapt in southern Indiana.

If you look at the number of people going to the mine field, consider the amount of material processed, the size of diamonds recovered....averages 2 recovered a day, doesn't seem to be very productive. All I say is, for anyone to be able say they earn a living at it there, a few good finds would have to be made each year. The $7 a day fee would start adding up, besides cost of staying in the area.

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Another large diamond - 3.83 carat yellow -found last Monday. That's the 30th diamond over 3 carats that have been found this year at the park.

Steve

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You know, i've passed that place up many times in the past. Never stopped to try my luck.... :idunno: Pictures i've seen looks like a plowed up field. Is that how it looks Red?

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You know, i've passed that place up many times in the past. Never stopped to try my luck.... :idunno: Pictures i've seen looks like a plowed up field. Is that how it looks Red?

A plowed field is exactly the right description. I have tried my luck there a couple times but got the skunk. Getting skunked doesn't apply to just gold. :rolleyes:

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Well I guess i'm lucky because i've never been skunked by either...hehe!!!

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I haven't been back to the diamond park in Arkansas, not since that trip.

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