Hike the Crater of Diamonds on New Year’s Day 2022

By: Waymon Cox

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Greetings from Crater of Diamonds State Park! With a new year just ahead, we are looking forward to exciting opportunities that often come with the changing of the calendar. 2022 will be a special year for the Crater of Diamonds, as we celebrate 50 years as an Arkansas State Park! On Saturday, January 1, be among the first to visit the Crater on its golden anniversary year, and learn about the park’s fascinating history and geology along a guided hike through the diamond search area.

The hike will begin at 10:30 a.m. and end around noon. Gates will open 15 minutes early for participants to arrive and gather with the park superintendent in the main parking area near the Visitor Center. Late entries will not be permitted. Hikers should dress for the weather, wear sturdy shoes, and be prepared to walk about one mile. All park facilities will be closed on New Year’s Day, and diamond searching will not be allowed during the hike. The park will resume normal operations at 8 a.m. on Sunday, January 2.

The 37.5-acre search area at Crater of Diamonds State Park is the eroded surface of an ancient, diamond-bearing volcanic pipe. The ground is plowed periodically, as weather allows, to loosen the soil and promote diamond finds. Parts of the search area may be steep and uneven; care should be taken in these areas to help prevent falls.

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This guided hike is part of the nationwide First Day Hikes initiative, led by America’s State Parks to encourage people to get outdoors. On New Year’s Day, hundreds of free, guided hikes will be organized in all 50 states. Kids and adults all across America will be participating in First Day Hikes, getting their hearts pumping and enjoying the beauty of a state park. Last year nearly 55,000 people rang in the New Year, collectively hiking over 133,000 miles throughout the country!

Crater of Diamonds State Park is located on Arkansas Highway 301 in Murfreesboro. It is one of 52 state parks administered by Arkansas State Parks, a division of the Arkansas Department of Parks, Heritage, and Tourism. For more information, visit www.CraterofDiamondsStatePark.com, call 870-285-3113, or email CraterofDiamonds@arkansas.com.

Search area last plowed: November 18, 2021

Most recent significant rainfall: December 18, 2021
Recent diamond finds (100 points = 1 carat):
December 12 – Christine Goode, Delight, AR, 33 pt. brown
December 13 – Frank Stallings, Paducah, KY, 6 pt. brown; The Crystal Collector, Wilmington, NC, 15 pt. white
December 15 – Frank Stallings, Paducah, KY, 3 pt. white
December 16 – Andrew Doeden, Murfreesboro, AR, 28 pt. brown

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