The high school Earth Science classes toured Ashfall Fossil Beds on Wednesday,
October 4, 2023. Their tour was guided by new park superintendent, Sam Matson.
Students learned that the ancient climate in Nebraska was similar to today’s
savanna in Africa and temperatures didn’t drop below freezing. Barrel-bodied
rhinos, saber-toothed deer, giraffe camels, and horned rodents were a few of the
animal species that lived at the site 12 million years ago. Ashfall is world-
renowned because the fossils are preserved “in situ” (where they are found). The
students all said the trip was fun and would recommend we continue to take the
earth science classes every year. Some were impressed that the ash came from a
volcano in southwestern Idaho. College intern students excavate the fossil bed
every summer, so each time we visit, there is more to see. Thank you for allowing
us to have this opportunity!