Gypsy's Travels

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Travels With Abs - Wednesday July 1st - "Tracking the Dinosaurs"

Wednesday morning started off with a trip to the Snow Canyon sand dunes to hunt for "dinosaur eggs." Darrell McMahon, our education director, presented information on dune formation. His use of foam props and photos, provided good visuals and encouraged the children to pay attention.

We examined tracks and track ways as we headed out over the dunes. It had been a busy place overnite.

The children had been in instructed in proper exploration techniques for paleontologists, but excitement reigned during the actual "dig" and everyone scrambled.

After much excitement and scurrying into the sand like little crabs, the groups unearthed their finds. Abs' group found several "Cantaloupeasaurus eggs."

Andrew Milner joined the group again and we headed to a special area designated "No Trespassing." Unfortunately, some people can't read and they had taken a backhoe into the area a few months earlier. Large slabs of terrain containing dinosaur tracks had been removed. Some were found being sold on e-bay. One of the most unfortunate parts of the theft is the loss of information. Many artifacts which could be priceless are rendered almost worthless by their removal from the site without proper documentation.
I was fascinated by the changing terrain and scenery in Utah, all within a short distance.
(Yes, those were taken out the window of the moving bus. What was your first clue?)
It amazes me that people make these finds in the, seemingly, middle of nowhere. We could see the tracks better from a higher vantage point. This was quite a hive of activity about 200 million years ago.
I was finally learning to spot the tracks. Some were were more obvious than others.
After a morning devoted to learning and a delicious lunch at the Electric Cafe, it was time for the children to let off some steam. An afternoon at the local water park was just the place to cool off and expend some of their energy. It was a busy day. The children were still raring to go, but the grandparents were delighted we were staying in for the evening. Everyone enjoyed pizza and spent the evening watching movies about....what else?....DINOSAURS!

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