It was another masterful performance by helicopter pilot Jim Feaver. Using helicopter time kindly donated to the Tumbler Ridge Museum Foundation by Heli-Lift International, Feaver lifted a magnificent dinosaur trackway slab out of a tight canyon near Tumbler Ridge and deposited it gently on a pallet, from where it could be moved to the Peace Region Palaeontology Research Centre.
It now resides safely in that facility?s collections area, where it will be further studied and casts made of the seven consecutive ankylosaur prints on the beautiful rippled rock surface. In time it will likely become an exhibit item in the BC Dinosaur Discovery Gallery, scheduled for construction in Tumbler Ridge by 2006.
A Museum Foundation work party of eight entered the canyon on the morning of Saturday September 3: Jennifer Becker, Wayne Mann, Jack McNeill, Bob Norman, and the Walkley family – Fred, Ruth, Esther and Sheena. It was Ruth Walkley who discovered this trackway back in 2003.
Under Fred?s guidance they nudged the 800 pound rock into the centre of the creek bed with crowbars, and managed to lift it onto the middle of the net. In the evening Fred connected the net to the 150 foot long-line, and a few minutes later the job was complete, to the cheers of the small crowd that had gathered to watch the arrival of the trackway slab from a safe distance.
Tumbler Ridge Museum Foundation greatly appreciates the support of Heli-Lift International for this project, the dedication of the work party, the assistance of Rob Mackay, and the expertise of Jim Feaver. Together they have enabled the Museum Foundation to acquire another outstanding item which can be shared and enjoyed by all, adds to the palaeontological information of the region, and will provide tourists and students with yet another reason to visit Tumbler Ridge.