Friday, March 13, 2009

Fieldwork Friday #2

I realize this is almost late. But it is still Friday where I am. I had hoped to post something earlier in the day for this new series, but unfortunately it didn't pan out that way. I was lucky enough to get out into the field twice this week! The first trip out was to a site that is not being worked by myself, but by a fellow paleontologist. The second trip was out today to prospect more of Rabbit Valley, like last week. I had held off on posting in hopes of finding something cool I could talk about today, but that was not to be. We did find quite a bit of fossilized wood, probably in the Dakota Formation (fall blocks), but was very scrappy.

The work we did earlier this week was visiting a track site in the Morrison Formation north of the Moab, Utah area on BLM land. It was very interesting to see and I look forward sharing a link to the research once it is published. It was nice to also get out and see some great geology. The area around Moab is always fun to see and think the geology is excellent! I always see something new on every trip. We were able to walk from the Morrison Formation to the Entrada Formation (also Jurassic in age) during our hiking that day, and had a great view of the La Sal Mountains in all their snowy wonder. I found two small, faint tracks in a sandstone covered in ripple marks from the lower Summerville Formation (picture on right). I also found an owl pellet (recent), full of tiny mouse bones, so that was a fun plus to poke that around. No fossilized bones on this trip.

On the ride home we drove though the canyon along Highway 128 (see map below). This is a great drive! If you have never driven this route I strongly encourage you to. It follows the Colorado River for quite a distance and you are surrounded by great cliffs of Moenkopi, Chinle, Wingate, Kayenta and Navajo. I know Silver Fox is familiar with this area, and she has many great post about it on her blog. I made sure to wave at Fisher Towers for her as we passed by. The sun was setting and it turned the Moenkopi and Chinle Formations turn an amazing deeper red. I hope to camp in the area some day so I can experience it again. Well worth it and a great way to send a fun day!

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© ReBecca K. Hunt-Foster. Please see the "Field Work Friday Rules" about the work I do and collection practicies.

1 comment:

Silver Fox said...

Glad you're getting out to do some field work! And thanks for waving at Fisher Towers for me. :)