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8925
South Dakota

Hands-On Paleontology: Excavating Mammoths in the Black Hills

Work with paleontologists as you uncover fossils at the Mammoth Site in the southern Black Hills. Plus, visit Mount Rushmore, Crazy Horse Monument and Custer State Park.
Rating (5)
Program No. 8925RJ
Length
7 days
Starts at
1,499
South Dakota

Hands-On Paleontology: Excavating Mammoths in the Black Hills

Work with paleontologists as you uncover fossils at the Mammoth Site in the southern Black Hills. Plus, visit Mount Rushmore, Crazy Horse Monument and Custer State Park.
Length
7 days
Starts at
1,499
Program No. 8925 RJ
climate
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At a Glance

Experience a rare window into the past discovering some of the most well-preserved, undisturbed mammoth fossils the world has ever known — femurs and fibulas, skulls and tusks, backbones and pelvises — at the renowned Mammoth Site in the southern Black Hills. The late paleontologist Dr. Larry Agenbroad, who studied the site for four decades, said, "The Mammoth Site is truly a gift from nature, our inheritance held in trust for over 26,000 years." Scientists estimate that more than 100 mammoths wandered into this ancient Ice Age sinkhole, and now you can study them for yourself, based in the friendly hamlet of Hot Springs.
Small Group
Small Group
Love to learn and explore in a small-group setting? These adventures offer small, personal experiences with groups of 10 to 24 participants.

Best of all, you'll ...

  • Learn how to excavate, record and preserve fossil material with the help of expert bone-bed and laboratory curators, geologists and paleontologists.
  • Travel back in time as you explore the world-renowned Mammoth Site and experience the hands-on thrill of working on an active paleontological dig site.
  • Visit three of America’s iconic wonders: Mount Rushmore, the Crazy Horse Monument and Custer State Park.

General Notes

Participants must sign a waiver before beginning work at the Mammoth Site bone bed and lab. Due to the nature of this program, listening devices are not available.
Visit the Road Scholar Bookshop
You can find many of the books we recommend at the Road Scholar store on bookshop.org, a website that supports local bookstores.
Mammoths and Mastodons: Titans of the Sea Age
by C. Bardoe
Mammoths and mastodons roamed the earth for more than a million years, and then suddenly went extinct. What was everyday life like for these colossal cousins of the modern elephant? What did they eat? How did they fit into their Ice Age landscape? Why did they disappear? These questions and more are answered in this fascinating book that presents the latest research, drawing on the recent discovery of a fully frozen baby mammoth—which has allowed scientists to learn more than they ever could have known just from studying bones and fossils. Profusely illustrated, Mammoths and Mastodons features photographs of archaeological digs, scientists at work in the field and in labs, and archival relics. Specially commissioned artwork also brings the story of mammoths and mastodons to life. The book includes a bibliography, a glossary, and an index.
The Hot Springs Mammoth Site
by 1994 ISBN#0-9624750-6-8
The Hot Springs Mammoth Site Edited by: Larry D. Agenbroad and Jim I. Mead Results of excavation and field and laboratory research for the first 10 field seasons at the Hot Springs, South Dakota Mammoth Site. Part 1: Introduction, History and Natural Setting; Part 2: Paleoecology and Paleontology; Part 3: Site Significance, Development and Future. Softcover, 457 pages, 46 blk/white photos, and 83 figures. 1994 ISBN#0-9624750-6-8
Mammoths: Ice Age Giants
by L. Agenbroad and L. Nelson
The book covers several topics, including global distribution, physiology, fossil and mummified finds, and theories on mammoth extinction. The primary information relates to subjects as human Ice Age hunters, mammoth mummies, and sinkhole history, along with geologic time lines.





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