Yesterday K and I got to go on a fossil dig. The dig was part of a class from our local community that K is currently enrolled in. I tagged along because a fossil dig sounded like something really cool to do, and because someone had to gear all the stuff for the pregnant lady.
The dig was way out in one of the most remote parts of the desert about 20 miles northwest of where we live. The creature that is being dug up this site is an ancient miniature camel, that was about the size of a large dog. Apparently our barren desiccated corner of the world use to be home large herds of mini-camels who roamed across a marshy landscape.
The dig site was on the banks of the wash where rushing water from the rare storm cut down into the layer of rock containing the fossils. The whole looks exactly like how you would imagine a site for digging up fossils, except for the 500 kilovolt power lines running directly overhead. The air was filled with a sound that resembled crackling bacon. The rock that the fossils were in was very soft and could mostly just be pulled apart by hand.
Most of the fossils where just fragments and extremely hard to spot, at least for me. K seems to have much better eyes for this sort of thing. Of all the people there, she made the best find of the day, the end of femur bone still articulated with what ever bone the femur attaches to, and whose name I can’t recall. My best find was a toe bone.
It was a pretty good time. The only really negative was the heat, we had a unusually warm day and nearly broke 100. Needless to say, all us of us were pretty wilted by the end of the day. The other thing that is a shame is that we forgot to charge the camera so we have no pictures of the trip. Two weeks from now the class going to fossil on the beach in Mexico. We are not going that trip. A remote isolated beach in the middle of nowhere in Mexico seems like a bad place to take pregnant women.