On August 7 and 10, Mayor Caisley and Councillors were escorted by palaeontologist Rich McCrea to provincially important palaeontological sites in the mountains, which the Tumbler Ridge Museum Foundation (TRMF) and Peace Region Palaeontology Research Centre (PRPRC) have had the privilege to research. Both trips were made possible through the kind assistance of CGG Veritas, who donated the helicopter time.
First the Kakwa dinosaur footprint site was visited, where up to a 1,000 footprints are exposed on a steep rock wall. Then they visited one of the fossil fish and marine reptile sites that the region is well known for. For the Mayor and Councillors to appreciate the nature of the fossil resource, direct experience of these sites is valuable. Following instruction from McCrea, they were able to try their hand at exploration for fossils, and found some specimens that could be added to the large cache that was flown back to the PRPRC. These two expeditions are the first of a series of trips to such sites over the next year, and the Mayor and Councillors have also been invited to visit B.C.?s recently discovered second dinosaur bone site.
Mayor Caisley commented afterwards: ?The opportunity to visit and explore a number of current discovery sites and view first hand artifacts on the ground that date back millions of years is an experience one will never forget. The excitement and interest only increases when one realizes this is but a small fraction of what has already been uncovered within our area, and with the continued commitment of our palaeontologists led by Rich McCrea and members of the TRMF, there is no doubt, the best is yet to come.?
The District of Tumbler Ridge and the TRMF also recently convened the first meeting of a Joint Museum Development Committee, which will work on advancing the museum project.