» Journey of the Gryposaurus


Sarah Wallace '22 and Molly Steavpack '24 work on a tibia specimen together and discuss their newfound interest in paleontology. On dinosaur excavations, it's not only about fossils: excavators must also learn to live communally and support one another. 

One key component of any dinosaur excavation is the process of plastering the specimen to ensure its safe transport to research institutions. In this clip you can see all elements of the plastering process, including the mixture of the plaster, the use of burlap strips to reinforce the jacket, and the speedy communication necessary for completing the process efficiently. Often, the plaster process takes multiple days as paleontologists need to ensure the fossils are well protected for the journey ahead. 

With the plastering process complete, the jacket must then be transported to its next location. In this clip, the excavators attach the 4-ton specimen to the back of a tractor and proceed to pull it up the steep terrain of the Montana Badlands.