Colorado’s Diamonds Cap Geologist’s Quest

For 12 years, Howard Coopersmith had been tracking diamonds in the high Rockies around the Colorado-Wyoming border. Chipping away at an area in the midst of a mountain pine and Douglas fir forest, he found his quarry. "There it was -- a beautiful gem diamond," he recalls. The find led to the discovery of the first American diamond mine. The mine, located near Kelsey Lake, Colo., went into production in June, and the first parcel of 3,000 carats was scheduled to be sold by tender offer in late September. In the beginning, that one diamond didn't make a mine, of course. But it did provide an excellent clue because diamonds are exceptionally hard to find. Even in known diamond-bearing kimberlite, a miner usually has to sort through a ton of rock to recover a single decent-sized stone. Before going any further, Coopersmith visited nearly every rancher and farmer in that corner of the s

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