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AmandaS

Mazon Creek help for Newbie

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AmandaS

Hi, 

I am not a fossil hunter but accidentally discovered the ability to find 300,000,000 yr old fossils in Mazon Creek on a TV show. Wow!!! I've been researching all day and now want to take my family there for spring break in March! Our story (short) & my questions:

My daughter is very interested in science and nature and critters. She spends hours outside digging contently for rocks, loves bugs, has rock collections, books on rocks & minerals, etc. She struggles in the classroom (3rd grade) and learns best by hands on experience. She would absolutely be in heaven here- our whole family would! I love to help my daughter experience her interests through our adventures. 

What advice could you give a family of 3 who has never hunted fossils? We are in Missouri so interested in camping close by- does anyone know of any good evening Camping places? Do we need to register with the state park and get daily admission? Should we go where most tourists go or off the beaten path? Is it possible for newbies to find a few fossils? Even if we found the most common we'd be so excited! We love exploring and take small hikes as a family. Are there spots within a couple miles of the "road" or parking? 

I truly appreciate any help! I will keep researching as well. I hope we can go and see this unbelievable history!!

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Tidgy's Dad

Welcome to TFF, Amanda.:)

There are several members here who are very experienced with Mazon Creek collecting who, i'm sure, will be delighted to help you out when they see this thread. 

I am fascinated with this location myself and would love to visit one day. 

Very good luck to you. 

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ynot

Welcome to TFF!

Have You done a search for "mazon creek" here on the Fossil Forum?

There are several good threads that will help to answer Your questions here.

And, as Tidgy's dad said, there are several members familiar with that location that may not be here every day.

Good luck with Your hunt!

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fossilized6s

Hi, welcome. Mazon does open back up for collecting the 1st of March. I usually will go within the first few weeks. Everytime i have gone in March the weather is unpredictable and usually wet and cold. I'm not sure if it's going to be ideal for a first hunt. I'd be willing to meet you guys down there and show you some easier areas to collect and bring some nodules to teach you guys on what to look for. 

 

You can find a printable free permit for collecting here: 

 

https://www.dnr.illinois.gov/parks/pages/mazonia-braidwood.aspx

 

Or if you don't want to meet me down there i can give you some pointers via PM, but it won't be a walk in the park. And like the others have stated, there is a lot of info on here to read about Mazon. 

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acatsews

We are going to check it out tomorrow. We have low expectations since it's our first time, but the weather seems good and we're up for the challenge. Even if we turn up nothing, it should still be fun exploring. My biggest concern is efficiently locating the parking lot, thus sparing the "are we EVER going to get there" moment! Wish us luck!

 

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oldtimer

Good luck and wish you the best. Please post up your finds when you get back.

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