Tuesday, 9 January 2007

Majestic Castle Peak 2007

I've just returned from one of those adventures that goes down as a trip of a lifetime. Eleven elite paleo enthusiasts were flown into the Tyaughton area near Castle Peak north of Goldbridge in a new Jet Ranger from CC Helicopters out of Lillooet. Great company, competent pilot, Scott Taylor... newest member of the Vancouver Paleontological Society... he's hooked.

We were interested in the local geology and fossils from the Jurassic/Triassic exposures high in the alpine. Camping at about 7,500 ft, we were treated to all four seasons and some great collecting over the course of the week. Past trips have included grizzlies at close quarters. This year we saw fresh tracks each day, but the bears were actively avoiding our camp but still leaving enough scat to give us the heads up that this is their territory.

We were able to get some shots of other wildlife including a fabulous moment with a resident marmot. A few whistles and her curious little face was immortalized for all to see. Over the course of the week we also saw a buck with a sexy set of horns (always a hit with the does... ) flocks of Franciscans and a majestic lone wolf.

The area is home to active research by UBC paleontologist, Louise Longridge and boasts abundant ammonites, bivalves & belemnites AND have a chance to see the Triassic-Jurassic boundary – a rare treat. As with all collecting, our search for treasure has a higher goal. All of our finds are lovingly photographed, catalogued and available for study. If fossils are your thing, visit www.bcfossils.ca to find a local society and get on out there.

Originally published in getawaybc.com