The 14 Certified Areas To Find And Mine For Diamond In Arkansas In 2024

By Dr. Keith Jackson - Geology PhD

| Updated

The 14 Certified Areas To Find And Mine For Diamond In Arkansas In 2024

By Dr. Keith Jackson - Geology PhD

Updated

In Arkansas, you can walk through forests or along riverbeds and find all kinds of sparkly and colorful treasures— that’s how diverse our geology is. From quartz that glimmers like ice to velvety black manganese minerals, it’s like the ground is sprinkled with nature’s glitter. And there’s so much variety!

Among the amazing treasures, there’s an extra special one: Arkansas diamonds! Our state is renowned for these shimmering wonders, it’s become our official state gemstone. Despite this, finding diamonds in Arkansas isn’t a walk in the park. You gotta know where to look, or you might just end up playing in the dirt.

So, if you’re itching to get your hands on some Arkansas diamonds, we’ve got some hot tips for you. There are certified areas here that are just perfect for diamond hunting, like the Crater of Diamonds State Park, Searcy area, Blue Ball area, Twin Knobs No. 1 Mine, and the Black Lick Prospect.

Whether you’re a seasoned rockhound or just starting out, these places will give you the best chance to discover your very own piece of Arkansas’s glittering beauty!

What Is Arkansas Diamond Anyway?

A raw piece of a beautiful black diamond
Raw black diamond photo provided by and available for purchase at DroomDiamond

Diamonds are made from carbon, the same stuff in pencil lead. But while pencil lead is soft, this gem is renowned as the hardest natural material in the world!

It forms deep underground and it takes billions of years to make its way to the surface where we can find them. If you want to find it, make sure you review our guide on how to identify diamonds.

People love this gem for a bunch of reasons. They’re not just sparkly and pretty to look at— they’re also super tough. Because of this, they’re perfect for cutting and grinding things in industry. And since they can handle heat well and don’t get scratched easily, they’re awesome for making tools that need to be strong.

But most of the time, when we think of diamonds, though, we think of jewelry. That’s because they can be cut into all sorts of shapes that catch the light and make them shine like tiny suns. That’s why the value of diamonds has been consistently high.

You can find this natural wonder in a few places around the world, usually where there used to be old, old volcanoes. Countries like Russia, Botswana, and Canada are among the top spots where people mine for diamonds. And, of course, you can also find these sparkly treasures in Arkansas!

How We Found The Best Diamond Locations in Arkansas
When it comes to choosing the best options for finding Arkansas diamond there are plenty of things we consider. Many of the best locations are closely guarded secrets which can make it really difficult for more casual rock hunters to find success. The key factors in our recommendations are:

  • The deep experience and understanding of our team about the area
  • Recommendations from local groups and clubs
  • How easy it is to get the a particular location
  • Safety and potential hazards when collecting
  • Weighing private and public locations
  • The ability for both experienced and novice rock enthusiasts to find great samples

With these factors in mind we’ve been able to put together a fantastic list that just about anyone can use!

The Best Places To Find Diamond in Arkansas

A stunning raw red diamond
Red diamond photo provided by frenchbluediamond

When it comes to rocks and minerals, Arkansas has lots of gem mine sites where you can find them. But since diamonds are pretty special and rare, you need to look at specific certified places if you want to find them.

Below are our top recommended spots for your Arkansas diamond hunting:

Always Confirm Access and Collection Rules!

Before heading out to any of the locations on our list you need to confirm access requirements and collection rules for both public and private locations.

These requirements are subject to change without notice and may differ from what we state below.

Always get updated information directly from the source ahead of time to ensure responsible rockhounding.

Crater of Diamonds State Park

Flocks of people searching through the soils of Crater of Diamonds State Park

Crater of Diamonds State Park is the only public place in the whole world where you can search for real diamonds and keep what you find! It sits over an ancient volcanic crater, which is not like the big, cone-shaped mountains you might be picturing. It’s more like a huge, flat surface.

Underneath the ground, there’s kimberlite, and that’s where diamonds are usually found. Over millions of years, erosion helped bring these stones closer to the surface, ready for you to find them.

Here, you’ll be walking around on 37 acres of plowed field—the eroded surface of that ancient volcanic crater. It’s a mix of dirt and other rocks, but hidden in there are diamonds. And not just tiny ones; some people have found real whoppers!

Getting here is easy. It’s near the town of Murfreesboro. You can drive there from Little Rock, the state capital, in less than two hours. Just head west on Interstate 30, then take Highway 70 southwest right to the park. But before you head out, make sure to revisit and review Arkansas’ collecting guidelines.

Where we found diamond in the Crater of Diamonds State Park

Diamonds can be found in the soil of the search area at the Crater of Diamonds State Park. You don’t need to dig deep because, sometimes, they’re right on the surface!

After rainstorms, water washes the soil away, leaving heavier rocks and diamonds on top. That’s why many prefer to search for this gem after it rains. The park staff also periodically plows the search area to bring fresh soil to the surface, increasing the chances of finding a diamond on top of the ground.

Rock pick being used

The tools every geode hunter will need

When you're out looking for geodes having the right tools for the job is very important. You don't need a lot for most trips but there are a handful that are critical and will make your life a lot easier.

We get asked a lot about the equipment we use. Over the years we've found a handful of tools that we recommend to both new and experienced geode hunters which we outline in great detail in our complete rockhounding tools and kit guide. These are quality options that also happen to be relatively inexpensive.

Below are the basic tools that make your life so much easier and save you a ton of time. Check out the full guide to see everything we recommend bringing. One quick note, as an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases but we try very hard to only recommend gear we would use ourselves and often recommend brands you can't find on Amazon.

At a minimum you should have:

1 - Sturdy rock hammer: The Estwing Rock Pick is our standard

2 - Rugged chisels: Try Kendo' 3-piece Chisel Set

3 - Compact shovel: The Koleiya 28-inch shovel works well

4 - Rock screen pan: The Wazakura Soil Sieve Set fits the bill

5 - Eye protection: DeWalt Safety Glasses are cheap and comfortable

6 - Head protection: Malta's Safety Helmet has been our go-to

7 - Jewelers lens with at least 20x magnification: Jarlink's Jewelers Loop is perfect

The geode-finding books that we use most

There are also a few books that have been extremely helpful in the search for gems. These books have great recommendations and tips:

National Audubon Society Field Guide to Rocks and Minerals: North America 

Southeast Treasure Hunter's Gem & Mineral Guide 

Earth Treasures: The Southeastern Quadrant 

We provide links to find these tools on Amazon but some can also be found at your local hardware stores. For more recommendations check out the link to our full tool guide above.

Searcy

A shallow creek and surrounding lush forest at Searcy

Searcy may not be directly on top of the diamond-rich soils like the Crater of Diamonds State Park, but it still has its own unique geological makeup that could excite any rock enthusiast.

Nestled in the foothills of the Ozark Mountains, Searcy is a mix of gentle rolling hills, lush greenery, and broad, open plains. Its landscape is crisscrossed by rivers and streams, which are great places to look for a variety of rocks and minerals. The Little Red River, famous for its trout fishing, is also a neat place to search for rocks.

The geology around Searcy is diverse. You’ve got sedimentary rocks like sandstone and shale, and if you’re lucky, you might even find some limestone with fossils!

If you want to go here, it’s a breeze. It’s about a 50-mile drive northeast of Little Rock. Hop on Highway 67/167 and it’s a straight shot right into the heart of Searcy.

Where we found diamond in Searcy

You can search through the area outcrops of Searcy to find sparkling specimens of diamonds.

Blue Ball

A big piece of rough black diamond
Raw diamond photo provided by and available for purchase at RoughAndRawDiamond

Blue Ball is a small community with a name that’s as quirky as its surroundings are beautiful. Tucked away in the Ouachita Mountains region, it’s a spot that’s a little off the beaten path, but that just adds to its charm for rock hunters and nature lovers.

This area is all about rolling hills, lush forests, and clear streams. It’s part of the Ouachita National Forest, which means it’s got loads of natural beauty and plenty of rocks and minerals. The geology here is pretty fascinating, with layers of sedimentary rocks that have been folded and faulted over millions of years.

To get to Blue Ball, you’ll want to drive to the heart of western Arkansas. It’s located right off of Highway 71, which runs north-south through Scott County. It’s about a two-hour drive south from Fort Smith, which is one of the larger cities in the area and has its own regional airport.

Where we found diamond in Blue Ball

While Blue Ball is a haven of different rocks and minerals, if you’re eyeing diamonds, you can explore its area exposures to uncover them.

Twin Knobs No. 1 Mine

Overview of the thick forest surrounding the Twin Knobs No. 1 Mine

Twin Knobs No. 1 Mine is nestled in Pike County, which is in southwestern Arkansas, and it’s got an amazing landscape. Think rolling hills, forests, and streams all dotted around, making it a pretty cool backdrop for any outdoor adventure.

Twin Knobs No. 1 Mine is part of this scenic area and sits among the geological wonderland that is the Arkansas Diamond Province. This is the same region where the world-famous Crater of Diamonds State Park is located, so you know it’s good.

The ground in and around this mine is full of volcanic rock called kimberlite, which usually contains diamonds. While Twin Knobs isn’t a spot where you can dig for diamonds like at the state park, the geology is similar. It gives you a real sense of the kind of place where diamonds love to hide.

Getting here is a trip through beautiful country roads. It’s about an hour and a half drive southwest of Little Rock. You’ll take Interstate 30 west and then head down Highway 27. The mine is near the town of Murfreesboro, which is also home to the Crater of Diamonds State Park.

Where we found diamond in the Twin Knobs No. 1 Mine

You can find diamonds in the volcanic crater soil at Twin Knobs No. 1 Mine. In these environments, this gem comes with kimberlite, which is brought to the surface through volcanic activity.

Over time, erosion can cause diamonds to be dispersed into the soil around the kimberlite pipes, making them accessible to miners and prospectors.

Black Lick Prospect

Close-up look at a rough gray diamond
Raw diamond photo provided by and available for purchase at Sparklegemsshop

Black Lick Prospect is located near Murfreesboro and is part of the same geologically rich region that includes the Crater of Diamonds State Park.

The geography here is full of lush greenery, with forests that seem to stretch on forever and streams that cut through the earth, creating potential hotspots for rock enthusiasts. Its terrain is a mix of rolling hills and flat plains, with soil that have seen ancient volcanic activity.

Geologically, this prospect sits atop an ancient volcanic pipe, similar to the nearby famous diamond site. This means the area carries some of the same types of minerals and gems, like lamproite or kimberlite, which can hold diamonds.

To get to this prospect, you can drive to Pike County, which is roughly 100 miles southwest of Little Rock. From Murfreesboro, it’s a matter of following local roads that wind through the picturesque Ouachita Mountains.

Where we found diamond in the Black Lick Prospect

You can find diamonds in the Black Lick Prospect by searching for kimberlite or sometimes in lamproite, another type of volcanic rock that usually contains them.

You can also search for them by looking through material that has been weathered and transported away from its source rock. This might involve sifting through soil, examining creek beds, or looking at the gravel layers.

Other Great Places To Find Arkansas Diamond

Two nearly identical yellowish white diamonds
Nearly identical diamonds photo provided by John Betts – Fine Minerals

If you’re up for more places where you can find diamonds in Arkansas, you can also visit the following certified areas where other rockhounds have had success uncovering these gems:

Our recommendations by county

County Location
Pike Mines in the trinity formation exposures of Cretaceous rocks intruded into Carboniferous formations
Pike American Mine
White Pelly Howard farm

Common Diamond-Hunting Questions

Six pieces of hexagonal-shaped diamonds
Hexagonal-shaped diamonds photo provided by Rough Diamond World

Before you pack your bags and prepare for your diamond hunting here, allow us to answer the most common question when it comes to finding Arkansas diamonds:

Is it illegal to collect diamond in Arkansas?

It’s not illegal to collect diamonds in our state as long as you are doing so from a place that allows it, like the Crater of Diamonds State Park. This park is unique because, as we’ve mentioned above, it’s the only public site in the world where you’re allowed to search for diamonds and keep whatever you find.

However, outside of such designated areas, collecting diamonds or any other minerals on private property without permission would be considered theft and, therefore, illegal. Additionally, on state-owned lands or federal lands not designated for collecting, it would also be against the law to remove minerals.

For more information on the rules and regulations when it comes to collecting diamonds here, visit the Arkansas Department of Parks, Heritage, and Tourism website.

The Best Places To Buy Diamond In Arkansas

A look at some of the available rocks and minerals at Real Earth Creations

We recognize that diamond is not an everyday find, even in a place bountiful with it like Arkansas. So if you want to get your hands on this shiny treasure without all the sweat of hunting it, you can visit our trusted local shops that have them.

Just be aware that in these shops, you’ll find diamonds that are raw, rough, polished, cut, and set in jewelry:

About Dr. Keith Jackson - Geology PhD

Keith Jackson is an avid rockhound who is constantly exploring new sites to expand his collection. He has worked as a professional Geologist for over 20 years and holds a PhD in Geology from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, a Masters Degree in Geology from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and a Bachelors Degree in Geology from the University of Connecticut.

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