Well the first week of Burpee’s Utah Paleo-program started with a bang…..sort of. The Saturday before all the extra help arrived saw some of the worst storms and rains in the last 25 years. In fact there was flooding from Hanksville to Moab. All the rain made it nearly impossible to get to the quarry on Monday, so the we loaded up (all 30 of us) and headed to Capital Reef National Park. I had never been there before and was glad I went.
Some spectacular geology visible there, from the Late Permian all the way to present. In addition the geology there are areas where ancient pictographs can be seen that were left behind by the Fremont Indians. By Tuesday it seemed like things were going to improve weather-wise so we went prospecting south of town in an effort to give our quarry road one more day of drying. As luck would have it one of our veteran volunteers Beverly Vaitkus found another dinosaur site, possibly the late Jurassic meat-eater, Allosaurus. Several bones were found including vertebra, ribs and some unknowns. As we were riding high on the new find, more rain decided to smack us in the face. All the drying that had occurred was now a moot point.
The credit goes to Joe Mongan who had been in a friendly competition all week with his father-in-law Herb Page over who would find the best bone. The winner would get an Estwing baseball cap (which I still owe Joe). We capped the week with a big pizza party and great stories. Here is the unofficial tally for the trip so far; 1) over 700 pounds of bones plastered and removed 2) over 40 new bones discovered so far. So how do you like them apples?