Day 1. We started off with blue skies and light winds which continued throughout the day. The temperature stayed in the 90’s (ouch) but plenty of water and digging under the tents made the day feel like a cool 89. This year we dug at Site B and by the time we’d arrived, William and Dallas (‘The Guys’) had everything prepped and ready to go. We even got a new location for the House of Blues (very exciting). Each day starts with surface collecting and today’s surface finds included a dentist’s office worth of Edmontosaurus teeth thanks to Jayne, and then Caroline found a piece of an arm bone – right there on the surface!
Right away Richard and Susan found what ended being a hot bed of bones. A partially exposed caudal vertebra turned into the uncovering of a tibia and another bone yet to be identified. After over 6 hours of working on exposing their bones, they were unable to excavate them completely. Luckily, their names will be forever attached to those bones as the discoverers and we will have to rely on the next few days of diggers to complete the process.
Caroline and Catherine were also on a roll with the bones they uncovered, including part of a large rib, a spinal column and a tail bone. Those two had a lot of success for first-time diggers! Speaking of first time diggers, Sean joined our TCM digging crew this year and on his first day of digging he found two vertebrae and several more bones which were yet to be identified and unearthed by the end of the day. Our Day 2 diggers will have a lot to work on when they arrive!
All in all it was a successful first day, it felt great to be back in South Dakota and to see all of our friends at the Prarie Vista Inn and the ranch. We’re looking forward to the next couple of weeks. We have 6 more days of digging with families and then it’s the teachers’ turn!