Paleontology Field Program
Digging for Triceratops
Hold Newly Found Dinosaur Bone In Your Hand
Triceratops Stalk the Landscape Atop Our Supply ATV
Jacketing a Triceratops Bone In Our Quarry
Sifting and Measuring In Our Quarry
In the Field Learning On Our Digs
Digging In A "Brand New" Microfossil Site
Packing it in after a long day in the field.
Learn to dig dinosaurs with us!
If you're tired of sitting in an armchair, reading about the adventures of others and ready to get your hands dirty the Field Paleontology Program is for you. Morrison Natural History Museum has partnered with the Glenrock Paleon Museum in Glenrock, Wyoming to offer the fossil expedition experience of a lifetime. Our programs are operated like an informal field school, where participants are introduced to project-based paleontological field work that supports current research projects.
Work with museum crews as they explore fossil sites of the Upper Cretaceous Lance Formation of Wyoming. Learn basic geological concepts to put fossils into context of time. Develop the eye for recognizing rock from bone as we teach you how to prospect for fossils. Collect at fossil microsites, containing dinosaur teeth, turtles and crocodylians, which will help to better understand the life of Late Cretaceous Wyoming. When appropriate, learn mapping and field jacketing techniques for the safe recovery of fossils bones. Assist in prospecting for new fossil sites, and maybe just make a huge discovery of your own.
The fossils you recover will be curated in the permanent collection of the Glenrock Paleon Museum. We will get you to the dig sites, provide you with excavation equipment and a hearty field-lunch, snacks, beverages, and provide instruction and guidance every step of the way. The rest of the experience is up to you.
Families are encouraged to join. We strongly recommend that participants be at least twelve years old. The nature of fossil collection and excavation requires participants to be physically independent, with the ability to carry a backpack with a water bottle, and sit, kneel, crouch, and lay on the ground for extended periods of time in hot outdoor conditions. The activity will also include standing and walking for extended periods of time in primitive outdoor conditions.
- Roughing It: Be prepared to be in the Wyoming wilderness. Dress appropriately. Loose-fitting, long pants and sleeves are best. Broken-in boots and moisture-wicking socks are a must. If you try to wear sandals or flip-flops we will rename you Rattlesnake McSnakebite and laugh at you when you get sharp things in your feet. A broad-brimmed hat, bandanna, and gloves are essential. Don't forget your favorite water bottle, sunscreen, and small backpack. A notebook and writing utensils will help you to document your experience.
- Pandemic Safety: Health and safety are a priority for our program. We assume that by the first day of your program, you have either been inoculated or have been responsibly quarantining. Groups will be kept small again this season, less than half of regular enrollment. While the vaccine for the virus that causes Covid-19 is now rolling out, we have no assurance that it will be made available to all of our participants in time for the field season. Because of this, we ask you to please bring a suitable face covering (and a spare) into the field with you each day. Face masks should be worn when in close proximity with others while in a quarry or riding in the pickup to the field area.
- Deposit & Tuition: This year, we have payment options. Now, you may pay online through the MNHM ticket portal. Click on the "Online Payments" link below for the Paleontology Field Program. We recommend full payment if possible. Should you choose to pay the tuition in two parts, to pay the final payment coordinate with Doug Hartshorn at email@example.com.
- Call the Morrison Museum at (303) 697-1873 from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. to pay via credit or debit card. All major credit or debit cards are accepted. Whether you pay online or by calling in, we encourage payment in full at the time of your deposit. Full payment is due prior to the start date of the program.
- Cancelation: Participants may cancel their reservation up to six weeks in advance of the start date will result in full refund sans deposit. Exceptions will be made for those impacted by the pandemic. In the event of program cancellation participants will receive a full refund within thirty days of the cancellation. @(Model.BulletStyle == CivicPlus.Entities.Modules.Layout.Enums.BulletStyle.Decimal ? "ol" : "ul")>
|Type of Dig||Dates||Registration Status||Participants|
|Mixed Experience||June 26 - 28, 2021||Open||6 available|
|Mixed Experience||July 10 - 12, 2021||Open||6 available|
|Mixed Experience||July 17 - 19, 2021||Open||6 available|
|Mixed Experience||July 24 - 26, 2021||Open||6 available|
|Mixed Experience||August 7 -9, 2021||Open||6 available|
|Digger Difficulty||Dates||Registration Status||Participants|
|Advanced||July 30 - August 2, 2021||Open||6|
|Four Day Program||$800 per person|
|Three Day Program||$600 per person|
Is a dig right for me?
In the field, romance of expedition quickly turns to the reality of excavation. It will be hot. There will be no shade. It will be windy, and grit will stick to your sweaty skin. You will suffer for your science. But, you will also contribute to paleontology by making your own discoveries and placing them in a public collection for all to marvel.