Today we went to the Brown family ranch to kick off our field work with J.P. Cavigelli from the Tate Museum at Casper College. The area we started in was an Upper Cretaceous Lance Creek (Hell Creek) dinosaur bone bed. Steve and Jessica started digging in their area while I helped Hayden with his measured section stratigraphic column of the site. He measured and collected the sample, and I would bag and label them. We were somewhat worried because the weather wasn’t the greatest, and we are working with some electrical equipment. Eventually the rain stopped though, and we started using the XRF Analyzer to see what an exposed bone was made up of chemically, and then took another reading from the other exposed layers. From there we went to another area with a great outcrop of sandstone with and excavation site called ‘Tendonitis’ because J.P. had found a large numbers of fossilized tendons there. We took samples and collected XRF data there as well. Hayden and I then started to work on another strat column while the others left for a little while. I took a few readings of the area we named ‘Sand Castle’ with the XRF. As a side-note, I feel like there is something to be said for professors and professionals like Dr. Hunt and J.P. that love their area of study so much, and are so eager to share it with the younger and more inexperienced students like me. It is extremely appreciated.
I am a first year geology undergraduate student at the University of Cincinnati. I am very excited about our project and the geology, and will be learning as much I can along the way.