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snarkshark

Beginner Trip Tips? Calvert Cliffs, Girl Scout Trip

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snarkshark

Sometime before the end of June 2020, I'd like to take my Girl Scout troop (approx 20 girls, ages 6-12) on a trip to look for sharks teeth. 

I've read through some of the tips in previous posts, and it seems like there are some good fossil hunting locations near Bayfront Park and at the Matoaka Beach cabins.

I plan to make a few floating sifters out of PVC pipe, and will give them each a collection jar.

 

I do have a few questions:

1.  Is one of the two locations above better than the other?  Is the $5 per person fee worth it for the daily trip to the cabins' beach?

2.  Is there a particular month of the year when you find more teeth and fossils?

3.  Will the girls need waders - or, are knee-high rain boots sufficient?

4.  I saw the tide chart - how should we time our arrival?  I saw somewhere that arriving between 1 to 3 hours early is ideal?

5.  Any other beginner trips - particularly for a group?

 

Thanks!

 

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Macrophyseter

Welcome to the forum! :)

 

I can't give much help (but we have a number of members here who are very experienced in Calvert Cliffs here), but hearing scouts going on a fossil hunt sound quite neat as a former Boy Scout.

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Darktooth

I would not recommend taking 20 kids to Bayfront Park unless you stay near the main Beach. I definately dont recommend taking them under the cliffs. Flag Ponds would be a much safer option for a group that big and considering the ages. Just my opinion.

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FossilsAnonymous
9 hours ago, Darktooth said:

I would not recommend taking 20 kids to Bayfront Park unless you stay near the main Beach. I definately dont recommend taking them under the cliffs. Flag Ponds would be a much safer option for a group that big and considering the ages. Just my opinion.

Agree for sure. Multiple things could go wrong with 20 people running around near the Cliffs.

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MarcoSr

Totally agree with "Darktooth".  Your girls are too young for the Bayfront Park cliff area.  I used to guide the school trips at Stratford Hall Virginia.  Kids that age only stay interested for a couple of hours so don't plan a trip with more than three or so hours actually on the beach.  Get to the beach several hours before low tide.  Low tide isn't always the lowest water of the day if you have high winds.  Go when the water is warm and you don't need waders which means the Summer.  With tides and wind most area water levels can rise fairly quickly and knee high rain boots won't work for kids that small/young.  Have the kids wear an old pair of sneakers.  They need footwear even with warm water because of sharp objects on the beach and in the water.  Get an experienced guide to lead you so someone can show the girls where and how to look for the fossils and to ID what they find.  Water levels are lower and fossils expose much better in late Fall and Winter.  However water and air temperatures are too cold for kids.  Bring a few sifting devices so the kids can sift if there isn't anything on the beach.

 

Marco Sr.

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Searcher78

I would have to agree that the best place for a group would be Flag Pond.  I was just there yesterday.  This area has a larger beach area to search, swim, and play.  I believe a bus would cost $30 dollars.  You can look up there prices online.  They have restrooms and shower area to wash your feet off just off the beach.  I would advise to bring plenty of water and food/snacks if you plan on spending a good amount of time there.  Shark teeth can be found in the surf area and in the dry sand area of the beaches if you sift for them.  It seems the closer you get to the cliffs the more bones you will find along with shark teeth.  Not sure how warm the water will be in June.  I was in the water yesterday and it was still warm enough to swim in.

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hokiehunter

Scratch Bay Front and Matoaka and go to Purse State Park instead.  100% chance if they tide is low they will find teeth and it is free and a nice hike (1/4 mile) to the beach.  Just make sure everyone has bug repellent on.  Winter is a better time of year there but early spring before the bugs and algae/water grass get bad is good too for a group like yours.  If you call ahead to Matoaka I'd bet they give you a rate though.  I think the girls would do just fine there on most days but finding teeth is the issue.  Even with sifters that beach can be a challenge as it is not nearly as productive as some other locations due to the lower erosion rates.  Cliffs right out front are totally safe though most days as they have plenty of vegetation on them and are relatively stable vs. Brownies.  My 2 cents.

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snarkshark

This is all super helpful.  I will keep you all updated on what we decide to do!

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