Oh my gosh – one of my favorite things to do when I was a child was to hunt for fossils – here is an article that will really give your children and education and be lost of fun for the whole family! In face we have some great accommodations when you travel to Utah for your digg!
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Now here is a fun unique vacaton you all can have!
How to Take Your Family on a Fossil Dig In Utah
Want to do something completely different at a low cost this summer? Consider traveling on a real fossil dig and gemstone hunt in Utah.
You can easily put together 3 days jam packed with fossil and gemstone collecting – many specimens you get to keep and take home. For example, on day one (1) you might consider going to hunt for dinosaur bone. Learn exactly what to look for and how to identify a fossil that’s well over 65 million years old. You may also find really gorgeous Petrified Wood. Please make sure you are on land that your are allowed to travel on and pick specimens from. NOTE: The only kind of dinosaur you may be allowed to take are truly unidentifiable small pieces. Anything that looks like a specimen bone needs to be reported to local authorities.
On your second day you may want to consider Trilobite hunting which is particularly cool and fun in Utah.
What is a trilobite?
A trilobite is form of invertebrate marine life that lived more than 500 million years ago, but are now extinct. These hard-shelled prehistoric critters roamed the sea floor and coral reefs in search of food. (Sea Floor – but now this is 6000 ft above sea level!!) Because of their great diversity and often perfect preservation in fine-grained rock, they are one of the most popular fossils among collectors.
Imagine, you are over 6000 ft above sea level in an area that once was the sea! Buried and trapped in the hardened mud (SHALE) are small but really cool Elrathia Kinghi Trilobites that lived over 500,000,000 years ago. Whoa! That’s like 250 million years BEFORE the Dinosaurs. Some of these specimens can be quite valuable. Some can be worth hundreds of dollars depending on quality. WARNING and a small word of caution. Do not drive a regular car into any of these areas. Just to get to a good trilobite dig site – you need to drive about 28 miles on a very rough dirt road and you will get a flat tire unless you rent or own a large 4-wheel drive truck. You don’t want to be stuck in an area where cell phones rarely work!
On day 3 – you may want to consider a little gemstone hunting. Some of the best TOPAZ GEMSTONES in the world are found in Utah. “Topaz” is also the official gemstone of Utah. Watch out though – getting to these gemstones is not easy and may require you to blast (yes – with dynamite) a rock just to release the beautiful stone hidden for million of years. In reality – you could also use a good heavy rock hammer to split open the rocks that the Topaz Gemstones may be trapped in. Hunting for Topaz is particularly good after a rainstorm as the smaller crystals get washed down the mountains and you can see them sparkle in the sunlight.
Do you like GEODES? Who doesn’t! Some fantastic specimens ranging from 1-inch to over 1 ft wide can be found in Utah as well. Geode hunting will require that you have permission to dig on a particular property. Very rough terrain to drive on as well to find these treasures. When you find the right spot or you, and you can dig these out of the ground, excitement will overtake you as you crack them open to expose the gorgeous crystals inside.
So go ahead and start planning your fossil dig trip to Utah right now and stay tuned for additional articles on Fossil Digs you can go on.
Fantastic snow, comfy accommodations. We enjoyed the spa and fireplace so much – perfect after a long day of skiing.- The Thompson Family - North Carolina