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Ice Age Discovery

Experience the biggest Ice Age discovery in Snowmass Village, CO

In October 2010, a bulldozer operator working in Snowmass Village at Ziegler Reservoir uncovered the tusk of a young female mammoth. Over the next 10 months, the Denver Museum of Nature & Science conducted its largest-ever fossil excavation, yielding a treasure trove of well-preserved Ice Age fossils.

Museum crews uncovered more than 5,000 bones of 41 kinds of Ice Age animals, including mammoths, mastodons, ground sloths, camels, deer, horse, and giant bison. Other animal bones found at the site: tiger salamander, frog, snake, lizard, duck, goose, grouse, trout, weasel, otter, bear, mouse and more.

Approximately 60 species of plants including grasses, herbs, flowers, shrubs, and trees were recovered from the Ziegler Reservoir Fossil Site. The plant species recovered from the site have provided scientific information about past climatic changes, and important insights into the biogeography of plants within the Rocky Mountains 100,000 years ago. The preserved series of Ice Age fossil ecosystems is one of the most significant fossil discoveries ever made in Colorado. This discovery in Snowmass Village will change forever the understanding of alpine life in the Ice Age. –

The Snowmass Village Ice Age Discovery center is located at the Snowmass Village Mall and is open daily from 10:00am – 5:00pm, June 2nd – September 30th, 2016. The educational displays were built for kids, but adults will find this interactive exhibit just as fascinating as the kids! The on-site interpreter will explain how the fossils were preserved so well, and they can answer any questions you might have. A must see during your next vacation, especially on a rainy day or when you need a break from outdoor activities.

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