Another Great Fossil Hunt on the Olympic Peninsula
For a rainy day it sure was a nice one. We have had something like 23 days
of rain up here in Washington recently, but since I only get two days off a week, it was a
nice day to go hunt some 28 million year old critters. It was a two hour drive, most which was
behind a logging truck. I didn't even think about the rain pelting down on my windshield. I wore
my rain catcher jacket. As it had been a whole week since my last trip and I was anxious to
get out again, I neglected to grab my rain gear on my way out the door at six in the morning.
As I arrived at the spot I grabbed my five gallon bucket, paper towels
(for wrapping the good ones), camera , gps , and, most importantly, my trusty chisel pick with
hybrid combination handle consisting of plastic and duct tape.
The rains have been good to me this week exposing many more concretions in
an area that has many good callianopsis c. parts. Last trip, I found some type of worms that
are not teredo. This trip, I found two more in the same area and confirmed they were not spoil.
They were exposed by the rain in an area where the topsoil was taken for fill.
I dug down a few inches and hit the layer. Just these finds made my day; the
rest was a bonus.
I continued along picking up concretions until the bucket handle felt like
it was going to give way. I took a different route back to the truck and found some more neat
fossils. The following piece of charcolized wood is about three inches in diameter.
The following is one concretion I wont have to break open.
I also found a couple snails on the way out.
Looks like another bluff to check out but my buckets full already. Dang.
It was a great day even though my jacket weighed more then my bucket of
rocks. The rain was off and on, although I didn't really notice till I returned to the truck
and fogged up the windows. I can't wait till next week!
I played with the bench grinder and the dremel engraver again today. This claw
is from a concretion that I found. Its free standing like the other. The hardest
part was clearing out the rock between the pincers. The top pincer broke off after several
hours of work - duh! It worked out though. It was much easier after the mishap and the pincer
glued back on without a seam. Oh ya, this is the pincer of a male Callianopsis c. Its from a
mudshrimp that lived around 28 million years ago. The shrimp was much like the modern day Ghost
shrimp. It lived in burrows that it mined for organic matter that it would pack away in a
brood chamber. The burrows are also found fossilized, some of which have been replaced by calcite.
CLICK THE LITTLE MINER TO RETURN TO THE FIELD TRIP PAGE