Friday, May 30, 2008

Florissant Fossil Beds

Last weekend, Connie and I took a daytrip drive in the mountains and one of our stops was Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument. The deposit here was created by a volcanic eruption during the Eocene. The most spectacularly evident remains are these petrified redwood stumps such as the one above.

And this one.

And this one. It's nice to think of a big redwood forest here in Colorado, even if it was 37 million years ago. Other than these giant stumps the finer-grained sediments here have preserved magnificently detailed fossils of small leaves and insects. We were a little short on time, so I just grabbed pictures of the big stuff. You can click through the web site I linked to see pictures of some of these.

This chipmunk accompanied me through the covered "theater" area. I must have looked like a soft touch for a snack.

1 comment:

Isaac said...

Hi Reid,
Where might these fossilized forests be? I'm always looking to take the family out to some interesting spots but being new to CO I'm severly lacking in local knowledge. A little help? Oh, and any other spots you might suggest would be great! Thanks!