The Towne Pass Fossil Locality, California

Lower Mississippian Tin Mountain Limestone

A Google Earth street car perspective that I edited and processed through photoshop. The view here is southeast from Towne Pass along State Route 190 in Death Valley National Park, California, to Lower Mississippian Tin Mountain Limestone exposures that are within hiking distance of about three-quarter mile. That "small" reddish-brown patch at the base of the peak in upper center is where you'll find beaucoup nicely preserved invertebrate fossils in weathered rubble from Tin Mountain limestones, some 358 million years old, brought down by erosion from exposures higher up on the slopes. Before Death Valley became a national park in 1994, the locality existed outside of Death Valley National Monument on Bureau of Land Management (BLM)-administered public lands and was wide open for hobby collecting of reasonable amounts of common invertebrate fossils. Remember, of course, that the locality now lies within a national park. Keep all fossils found in a camera.

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