Thursday, April 11, 2013

Day 6 of 8: Seaways Cretaceous and Pennsylvanian

After yesterday's sorry weather, today's was just perfect!  Even better, our drive through the Dallas/Fort Worth metroplex was not quite as scary as expected.  We made it to Benbrook Lake, which is southwest of Fort Worth. 

At the spillway we collected several kinds of gastropods, echinoids, bivalves, and a couple of ammonites.

After Benbrook, we had considered inserting a jaunt to Glen Rose, to see dinosaur tracks, but felt it would add too much driving, not enough fossiling.  The vote was to go on to Mineral Wells.

There is a fossil park at Mineral Wells, secured by the Dallas Paleontological Society.  It is truly a nice park and there is a sign board there, well designed to show what fossils may be found at the sight.

We found many of the depicted fossils.  They are abundant, and very tiny.  It almost made you cringe to walk there because you could hear little crunches...

I had a ball; I think most of us did.  There were just so many types of fossils to look for!  Not to mention I found something I've had on my list to find for a long time - a crinoid calyx!

It was nice that we didn't have far to drive when we finally dragged ourselves away from fossil hunting.  Mineral Wells is not very big, but they have a fun restaurant called Mesquite Pit.  (Mesquite is a tree often used for grilling.)  Just walking in and smelling the aroma made your mouth water.

It's hard to believe we've already had so much of this trip.  The next two days will be directed back to Colorado.  The fun isn't over, though, we still have several stops to go!

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