The day before, Paleontology had been up Tattler Creek to look at fossil dinosaur footprints. We decided to do the same today. It was a beautiful canyon, with lots of cool geology. We looked at a rhyolite sill, which is a horizontal intrusion of magma. Derek climbed up a small scree slope to look at it. While he was up there, I filmed a short segment of him explaining it and sliding down the hill, although it eventually had to be cut because of time constraints.
We were walking up the stream when a dog came running down the path. Or, that's what I thought it was, until I realized that there was no one behind it. It was actually a coyote, and it just walked right past us, about 10 feet away, and continued on its trip, unfazed by out presence.
At the same spot, we saw two streams that came together (picture above). One was just a normal, clear stream, but the other was yellow. The rocks on the bottom all had a coating, probably of a calcium carbonate. It was a pretty cool example of sediment deposition by streams.
We finally reached our destination, which was along a stream. The dinosaur footprints had been made in mud, and the fossil was a cast of that imprint, meaning they stuck out of the rock face.
In the left-hand picture, I’m pointing at a hadrosaur track, the right hand a therapod.
The rock had been transformed and shifted, as the face now sat upright, with a dip of about 80 degrees. These were therapod tracks, which were usually the carnivores. We also saw hadrosaur tracks which are usually plant eaters. The hadrosaur (plant eaters) tracks were more blobular, while the therapods had distinct toes.
A picture of a Therapod, plus a simple drawing of my idea of the difference.
We filmed a segment here, then headed back down. That night Derek and Dirck, from paleontology, went swimming in the river again. We also filmed a segment where Emily used the X-Ray Analyzer and explained it. Afterwards we did a photo shoot of her holding the Niton and a can of bear spray, silhouetted by the setting sun. I guess it was supposed to have a western theme.
(I’m second from the left, in XtraTufs)