2010 Five-Day Moab Expedition Notes
The 5-day expedition to Moab was a great success this year, with 12 participants traveling from Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Wisconsin, New Mexico, and California! Below is a short recap of our trip:
Day 1 (June 28, 2010): We met with participants at the hotel to have dinner and discuss the trip’s structure. We went over some of the local geology they would be seeing, fossils they might find and/or see on the trip, and the schedule for the week.
Day 2 (June 29, 2010): Our first day on the road we drove down from Grand Junction to Moab along Highway 128. We stopped to become better acquainted with the local geology of the area. We then headed south into the La Sal Mountains to visit a dinosaur track site in the Entrada Formation at Fisher Mesa. From there the group traveled to Dead Horse Point State Park for lunch before taking a nice afternoon drive through Arches National Park to wrap up the day.
Day 3 (June 30, 2010): Our second day was filled with prospecting in the Triassic Chinle Formation. Several of the group participants, including Sarah, Michelle, and Patrice found teeth belonging to phytosaurs and rauisuchians.
We also toured the Poison Spider dinosaur track site and had a chance to view the petroglyphs that have been left on the Navajo Sandstone at this site.
Afterwards we drove to the Mill Canyon area north of Moab to walk a trail that the BLM maintains where fossil bones and wood are preserved in the Jurassic Morrison Formation.
Day 4 (July 1, 2010): Today we drove to the Mygatt-Moore Dinosaur Quarry in western Colorado. We spent the day digging for the fossilized remains of Late Jurassic dinosaurs. We found a new limb bone in the quarry today along with several pieces of fragmentary dinosaur bone. Another interesting find was a small, well preserved twig found by Barbara and what appears to be a cycad stalk found by Tom. The cycad was safely wrapped in a protective jacket of plastered bandages for its trip back to the museum.
After we finished up at the quarry and headed back towards Moab, we made a stop at Sego Canyon near the town of Thompson Springs to see the petroglyphs and pictographs that can be seen in the Book Cliffs.
Day 5 (July 2, 2010): On our last day together we woke up early for a morning float on the Colorado River through the Professor Valley. It was a beautiful morning and the weather was perfect for enjoying the river and even a splash or two. Afterwards we returned to Moab for lunch before heading back to the Dinosaur Journey Museum in Fruita for our tour of the lab and collections room, as well as a chance to see the entire museum. We finished off the evening dining together at a local Mexican restaurant, where we reminisced on the week’s events and how quickly it passed.
It was a really great week with everyone and we hope that everyone had as much fun as we did!