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Summer Field Paleo Expeditions

Museum of Geology, South Dakota School of Mines and Technology
2001 Summer Field Paleontology Expeditions
Make this a summer to remember!
Join our Corps of Paleo Discovery!

May 13 to 26.  Fossil Lake, Oregon - fossil mammals, fish, and birds from
the late Pleistocene on the historic trail of Professors Condon and Cope.
This Expedition is an excellent introduction to vertebrate paleontology with
Dr. James Martin.

June 18 to 22.  Paleontology for Families - visit Rapid City and surrounding
areas for a variety of fossil experiences.  This is an opportunity to learn
more about fossils for families with young children.  Register for 2 to 5
days during this session.  Field trips to nearby fossil sites, guided tours
through local museums, and opportunities to dig and prepare fossils in the
laboratory are planned.  Parent(s) must attend with child(ren).  Coordinated
by Carrie Herbel.

July 1 to 14. Jurassic Dinosaurs and Mammals - near Sundance, Wyoming.
Excavation continues at this Morrison Formation locality.  Camarasaurus and
Allosaurus are the major dinosaurs at this quarry.  Tiny primitive mammals
have been found amongst these large beasts.  Join a team of graduate
students as they expand the quarry.  Coordinated by Dr. James Martin.

July 9 to 20. Join the crew working at the famous Pig Dig in Badlands
National Park.  Excavate a unique tangle of fossil bones of animals such as
rhinos, horses, deer and pig-like animals in the classic White River
Badlands.  Coordinated by Carrie Herbel.

July 16 to 27. South Dakota Dinosaurs in the Hell Creek Formation - This
expedition takes you back in time to the large beasts that roam the area
over 65 million years ago.  Late Cretaceous fossil expert, Mike Greenwald
provides guidance in the identification and excavation of dinosaurs and
other fossil creatures during this two-week session.

August 6 to 17 and/or August 20 to 31. Marine Turtles, Mosasaurs and
Plesiosaurs from the Late Cretaceous Inland Seas - Join this expedition
along the Missouri River near Chamberlain, South Dakota.  Dr. Jim Martin and
David Parris will lead prospecting and excavation of these fascinating

501 E. Saint Joseph Street
Rapid City, SD  57701
1-800-544-8162 ext. 2467

Field Paleontology is a two-week experience that is designed to introduce
students and interested persons to the procedures of preserving and
documenting fossil discoveries. You may participate for two weeks as a
college course for 2 semester credits or just for the educational experience
with no college credit. We emphasize the fact that fossils are information
so the geologic context of fossils as well as the distribution of fossils at
a given site are meticulously recorded. Although the program is based in
Rapid City, South Dakota, with the Museum of Geology, each session is taught
in the field in places that are of current interest to research undertaking
at the Museum of Geology.  Rapid City is accessible by commercial airlines,
buses, and the Interstate system.

The field sessions are taught at various times of the summer months of June,
July, and August. Our climate is continental in character which means that
it can be quite hot (>40 Celsius) and sometimes bone-chilling cool. Rain is
possible but seldom interferes with the work for very long. The best advice
on clothing is to have layers of clothing so that you can be comfortable
from 5 to 40o C. A hat to keep sun off, sunglasses, and sunscreen are
helpful. Other materials necessary include glasses that protect your eyes
while chipping rocks, a rock hammer, a 2-inch wide natural bristle
paintbrush, gloves, a small chisel, and a sharp awl. Canteen for water on
hot days, a camera to record your experience, a notebook and pen to record
observations, and a sense of humor make this a very rewarding experience.

Hotel accommodations can be obtained for many of the sessions or camping is
another alternative. Camping is usually done at commercial campgrounds and
food is purchased nearby. A small tent that is capable of withstanding
strong wind and a sleeping bag with a mat to soften the ground are
advisable. Cooking arrangements vary with group leader so you will know more
when you choose a specific course.

Sessions are two weeks long and begin with meeting in Rapid City unless
other arrangements are made. Your instructor will designate the time and
place to meet. The Museum provides transportation to the research area and
base camp. The first day will be spent with an orientation session for
participants. Thereafter, the group will assemble each morning at a
specified time (different group leaders operate on different schedules) with
all materials necessary to get them through the day, water, lunches, tools,
and notebooks. After a brief review of the goals for that day, the
participants will then drive to the site or area that is being investigated.
During the day, breaks may be taken as a group. Lunch is at mid-day, and we
usually wind up at about 4:30 - 5:00 pm before the drive back to camp or
hotel. The exact nature of the day may vary if the goal for the day is to
search out new sites or to spend the day in a quarry working on a specimen.

NO PETS are allowed to accompany the participants, and due to insurance
reasons, an adult who must also be a participant must accompany all persons
under the age of 18.

The Museum accepts payment for the experience by VISA or MasterCard, money
order, cashier's check, or personal check. Payment must be made in full two
weeks before the session starts.  Cost is $450.00 for each two-week session
unless taken for college credit. If elected for undergraduate credit, the
course will cost $550. If elected for graduate credit, the course will cost
$650. There is a possibility of modest application fees being accessed by
the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology for those opting to take the
course for credit. Field Paleontology is a 2-credit course. Please note you
may sign up for more than one session. If you have further questions please
write us at the Museum of Geology, South Dakota School of Mines and
Technology, Rapid City, SD  57701, or call 1-800-544-8162 extension 2467.