Western Interior Paleontological Society - Denver, CO

Como Bluff

Description: Home of the famous Bone Wars in the 1880s, Como Bluff has produced many well-preserved specimens of dinosaurs, as well as mammals, turtles, crocodilians, and fish from the Morrison Formation. Many specimens were collected by men working for O.C. Marsh between 1877 and 1889 and by the Hubbel Brothers for E.D. Cope between 1879 and 1880.

The Nail Quarry is on private ranchland and is managed by Jim Siegworth, with the assistance of Anita Colin. Hundreds of bones have been removed from this site and there are probably hundreds remaining. They are primarily the remains of the "classic" dinosaurs like Allosaurus, Apatosaurus, and Stegosaurus. The dinosaur fossils we excavate go to the various museums, including the Tate Museum in Casper, Wyoming.Near the quarry, the older Sundance Formation contains numerous belemnite fossils, plus an occasional ammonite, which you may collect.

The quarry is ideal for those who have not helped at a dinosaur quarry before. Participants will be taught the various techniques used for extracting dinosaur fossils at the quarry. Most of the tools are provided, but you can bring a screwdriver and a paintbrush (fence-painting type)if you like. There are jobs for everyone, from picking at fossils with dental tools and small brushes to hauling buckets of "muck" out of the diffing site. Jim and Anita are happy to teach you what you need to know!

The meeting place is 50 miles northwest of Laramie, Wyoming. Any vehicle can drive to within a mile of the quarry. A four-wheel drive vehicle is needed for the last mile. We can either carpool the last mile to the quarry, or you can walk in. Free camping is available at the quarry or motels in Rock River and Medicine Bow can be used for 60-70 dollars per night.

Physical difficulty can be tailored to individual preference with more difficult jobs being things like hauling overburden from the quarry face and dumping it down a hill. Water consumption is important without much shade, though it should not be too hot at this time of year. Matrix is relatively easy clay, so extraction does not need power tools or heavy equipment.

Participants are responsible for lodging, food, and transportation.

Location: Southern Wyoming, near Medicine Bow
Status: Waiting for approval
Date: Saturday, September 30, 2017
Priority: 5-Medium
Access: Public
Category: Field Trips*
Created by: Malcolm Bedell
Updated: Sunday, June 4, 2017 4:42am GMT

For WIPS members only