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Looking for advice about shark tooth hill! TIA


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PrehistoricWonders

Hey everyone!
Going to STH somewhat soon, I plan on going to Ernst quarries(or if anyone has any other sites they’d recommend), and was wondering if there were any tips anyone could give me, since This will be my first time.
Also, are there safety instructions they give you when you get there?

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Crusty_Crab

I strongly advise you to stick to Ernst Quarries. There are other places to dig, but generations of diggers have undercut them and dangerous conditions now exist. In fact, I understand that a well known member of this forum (Caldigger) tragically passed away in one such area when it collapsed on him. You should be informed of Valley Fever, which is caused by coccidioides fungal spores. The risk is relatively low, but it is there. A common precaution that people take is to wear a mask if you're going to be in a dusty area. A more immediate concern is heat and dehydration. Make sure you have plenty of water, a hat, sunscreen and a snack. Since the area is exposed, it is surprisingly windy at times and you should bring a light jacket just in case. The quarry provides tools including shovels and screens (I think there are people that bring their own, but if you're coming from across the country, it might not be worth the hassle of bringing your own). 

 

If you have more time to spare, check out the Buena Vista Museum, which is in Bakersfield to get a glimpse of what can be found there. Also, I would recommend watching the video of Huell Howser when he visited the area, although the quarry he visited is now private property.  https://blogs.chapman.edu/huell-howser-archives/2006/11/08/shark-tooth-hill-californias-gold-9012/ Huell is a legend amongst Californians. Watch it, you won't be sorry.

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On 5/6/2021 at 4:33 PM, Crusty_Crab said:

I strongly advise you to stick to Ernst Quarries. There are other places to dig, but generations of diggers have undercut them and dangerous conditions now exist. In fact, I understand that a well known member of this forum (Caldigger) tragically passed away in one such area when it collapsed on him. You should be informed of Valley Fever, which is caused by coccidioides fungal spores. The risk is relatively low, but it is there. A common precaution that people take is to wear a mask if you're going to be in a dusty area. A more immediate concern is heat and dehydration. Make sure you have plenty of water, a hat, sunscreen and a snack. Since the area is exposed, it is surprisingly windy at times and you should bring a light jacket just in case. The quarry provides tools including shovels and screens (I think there are people that bring their own, but if you're coming from across the country, it might not be worth the hassle of bringing your own). 

 

If you have more time to spare, check out the Buena Vista Museum, which is in Bakersfield to get a glimpse of what can be found there. Also, I would recommend watching the video of Huell Howser when he visited the area, although the quarry he visited is now private property.  https://blogs.chapman.edu/huell-howser-archives/2006/11/08/shark-tooth-hill-californias-gold-9012/ Huell is a legend amongst Californians. Watch it, you won't be sorry.

 

I remember when that episode of "California's Gold" was made.  Bob loved that show and he enjoyed meeting Huell Howser.  I went to visit Bob in March 2007 and he gave me one of the copies of the DVD he had just received.  Sadly, he passed away about two weeks later.  He owned the quarry at the time of the episode's filming.  The family sold it after his passing.

 

Yeah, Huell Howser is a legend.  He was so enthusiastic about life.  He seemed to enjoy meeting everyone he talked to and liked learning new things about the state.  I was sad to hear of his passing several years ago.

 

 

 

 

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