Saturday, 8/14

These photos just kind of encapsulate what it’s all about out here….

Steve in his element
Badlands butte overlook
Rough, desert-like conditions this year

Went into town first thing this morning to do some chores, get online and maybe … get one last nice chai latte from the Compass Coffee shop in town (I did!). They’re great, the tea is great and it’s sure a nice way to start my day.

Got back out on the ranch one last time for this season. I headed out to where we found and excavated the triceratops frill. I got the gps coordinates from the dig site (I forgot to do so earlier) and then wondered around a bit in that area of the ranch. I came across some interesting possibilities for future digs; found a couple of spots with quite a bit of bone weathering out. Will make note of this location for the future. Also saw something white that had eroded out of the hillside at almost the very top of a butte in the near distance. What the heck, so I went on a climb and checked out what I guessed was likely just some type of white or lightish rock. But when I got closer it was clearly large chunks of petrified wood that was splintering and kind of flowing down the hill. I left it just as I found it for possible collection another day.

I then headed to the opposite end of the ranch to the Clarence dig site. I needed to gather the canopy and assorted tools from the dig and decide what to do with what is likely a scapula they we’ve exposed. I either need to protect it in place or work to pedestal it and put it in a plaster field jacket. I went for it and prepared it for plastering and then (foolishly?) flipped the still wet jacket and carried the 34” long, and heavy fossil back to the truck. Success! Removed all bones currently visible. And I think there are more here – next year we’ll be back at it.

Scapula in process of being exposed
Pedastaled and ready for field jacket
All wrapped up, including wood “splints” to stiffen the jacket
Clarence dig site devoid of exposed fossils. Are there more here…? We’ll see next season.

I got back to camp, cleaned up and went into town to have a “see you later” supper with the ranch owners. Afterward, headed over to the Old Skool Brew Pub for “BrewTunes.” It’s a guess the song & artist friendly competition with groups of people in teams trying to guess from snippets of music and crazy clues. Very fun.

Headed back home to Indiana in the morning and sure feel good about all we’ve accomplished and just feel good!