Fossil Collecting Axioms
Thread: November 2006

REMEMBER, whenever you go fossil collecting.....

A stromato-lite has 1/3 less calories than a regular stromato...
Alan Goldstein

But it's not as satisfying.
Gene Hartstein

When you are with a novice collector in your favorite collecting site
give them a fossil. Your gift will come back to you three fold!
Arlene Castleman

The name you want to give to your new discovery is copyrighted.
Tom Stout

If you are a Dr. you can always tell your student helper that what he
found was junk and to give it over... then publish after the student
has gone.
Dirk Ross

When you find something don`t announce it to the group or you will
have everyone in your area finding the things you would have found
and it will piss you off---at least wait until you have collected all that
you can carry anyway.
Dr. E. C. Galbreath

When someone is finding bone scrap below you, start looking above
their area to find the unweathered remains and see their reaction.
Dr. E. C. Galbreath

IF you should happen to catch glimpse of a great fossil never look
at it directly; approach it sideways with eyes slightly cast; if you look
at it dead on it will turn into a leveright .
Dirk Ross

If you stumble onto a rattlesnake, perhaps you are near something
you don`t want to collect !!!
Dirk Ross

If you find a horned toad, gently pick it up and stroke it on its head
and back...if he is pleased he will point in the direction of the fossils
or artifacts and will let his friends know to help you out.
(my Grandfather-Cherokee)
Dirk Ross

Pick up a couple of special rocks at the site and rattle them together
while you are searching...they help the fossils or artifacts become less
shy to show themselves; also the rocks know the area and its history
and will speak their story for you. (My Grandfather-Cherokee)
Dirk Ross

Never say to your wife: get off your pygidium and cook me some dinner!
Michael Schmidt

It never seems to fail when it's a long hike to a promising site- those
who drop off the pace and take a break find the best fossil where they
are sitting and resting.
Jeff Chalup

Never DRIVE down a road that you aren't willing to WALK back up.

The closer it is to dark, the more interesting side roads you will be
tempted to explore.
Garret Romaine

And the closer your gas gauge is to empty......
Garret Romaine

The tool you need you left at home.
Tom Stout

Some times you have to remember to look down.
Tom Stout

The bigger the rock the further the walk.
Tom Stout

Directions to the "best site ever" are always wrong.
Tom Stout

Always look in the "wrong place", you might be surprised what you find.
Tom Stout

The rock (fossil) you want most at the rock store you can't afford.
The ones you can afford you already have a dozen.
Tom Stout

No matter if you find something or not you are bound to pay tribute
in sacrifices for hunting fossils by forgetting a hammer, camera or
other equipment in the field.
Dirk Ross

Never prep anything in the field.
Ken Smith

The rock will always break through the middle of the fossil.
Steven Holley

When trying to chip away some matrix, the last strike of the hammer
was one to many.
Steven Holley

The best fossils are in the largest boulders and your saw will not start.
Steven Holley

The size of your sandwich you packed for lunch is directly proportional
to the amount of fossils you collect before digging it out from underneath
and eating it.

Take a first time collector to your favorite locality and they will find
something exceedingly rare that you always wanted, been looking for
years and will covet until you die an old bitter fossil collector.

If your fossil hunting buddy says it is only an easy half mile trek to the
Mecca of all fossil beds, add two miles to the hike, and you will find a
pile of gravel. (I believe it was uphill both ways).

There are no short cuts to field experience.
Barry Sutton

I find that field short cuts can lead to unexpected cows!

Don't forget the bulls...............

A little kid always finds the best fossil; after all, they are closer to the ground.
Dave Phillips

Pack a trunk full of boxes and you are sure to find nothing......

The best finds are often the result of an unintended misstep.

The best fossils all seem to have been exposed and weathered
about a month too long.

The more delicate and valuable the fossil, the harder, more brittle,
and less predictable the matrix.

Pack up a special find and it will get lost. Put it in with the masses
and you will find it later!

The probability of a fossil being lost or damaged in transport is directly
proportional to its value and /or scientific importance.

Any fossil, when jacketed, will subsequently be found to miss critical
pieces upon opening the jacket in the lab.

Fantastic fossils when collected will turn out to be leaverites when
retrieved from a collecting bag.

The size and weight of the best fossil you find will always be
disproportionately larger or heavier than the capacity of your bucket,
pack or whatever you brought to carry your fossils. It will also be
found at the greatest distance from your vehicle.

Always check your back pack before hiking back to the car.
If your fossil hunting friend is the practical joker type ...
You might want to examine all of the rocks in your
backpack BEFORE hiking 2 miles back to the car.
Purely by mistake ... Your friend may have slipped
some of the heavier rocks he found in your backpack.
Voice of experience
Barry Sutton

The hotter the day becomes, the less water you have left, and the heavier
your fossil load becomes, the more likely the last fossils you find will
turn out to be leaverites.

You find the really good ammonites way down the beach just as the
tides acomin' in at a gallop.

The REALLY good localities are the ones you happen upon five
minutes before the sun goes down. Never fails.

If your back yard is mostly fossils, your lawnmower won't last very long.

Any fossil you find is most likely the most common fossil you can find.

If you find a bone sticking out of the cliff, there is fifty feet of
rock on top to remove to get it out.
Chuck Finsley

If you find a tail bone in-situ, the rest of the animal has washed away.
Chuck Finsley

If you find human remains next to anything older than the Pleistocene,
call the coroner.

The REALLY good localities are where its raining, snowing,
flooding, on public land, or some other natural disaster is
taking place...and you lost your directions.

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