Did I just find a fossil?

Discussion in 'Sidewinders Bar & Grille' started by cranky, Sep 14, 2021.

  1. cranky

    cranky Senior Stratmaster

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    No, not a Keith Richards joke.

    Was out hiking with the dogs and saw this. Thought it odd. I don't typically have eyes for this sort of thing.

    Mainly granite up here, with fairly rapid erosion resulting in decomposed granite on a lot of hillsides like this one -- wind, snow melt and riparian-adjacent.

    IMG_20210914_110831802_HDR.jpg
     
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  2. dbb541

    dbb541 Strat-O-Master

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    It's probably a Pterodactyl spine.
    Just kidding, that is a very interesting looking rock. Something may be going on there.
     
  3. PonyB

    PonyB Strat-O-Master

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    I think that's a line of rock formed when it was in fluid form.
     
  4. cranky

    cranky Senior Stratmaster

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    Fluid rock at the surface of the eastern Sierra foothills?
     
  5. PonyB

    PonyB Strat-O-Master

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    Yes?
     
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  6. cranky

    cranky Senior Stratmaster

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    I should have gotten a pic from a different angle, but I was avoiding shadows. From above it looks more of a protrusion out from the main rock, and the separation between white sections was more akin to vertibrae.

    I also had bone on the mind, as we'd passed some deer remains about 20 feet up the hill.
     
  7. dirocyn

    dirocyn Most Honored Senior Member

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    The shape looks an awful lot like a turtle shell, although who knows what it looks like when ya expose the whole thing. Might be obvious what it is, with a little digging. Or you could check and see if any local universities have a paleontologist on staff.

    If it's not on your property, it would be a kindness to let the owner know you think there's something there.
     
  8. Packrat

    Packrat Strat-Talker

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    Quartzite vein. The host rock eroded faster as it is softer than the quartz. In the Sierra sometimes there is gold in the Quartz.
     
  9. CB91710

    CB91710 No GAS shortage here Double Platinum Supporting Member

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    Well... it may not have been at the surface when it was fluid.
    But ya... Eastern Sierras are a huge volcanic area. The caldera extends from Mammoth nearly to Bishop.


    250px-CalderaRelief_large.png
     
  10. nickmsmith

    nickmsmith Dr. Stratster

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    We were all underwater once. In my town, we have a few decently high limestone formations from Dead sea life, millions of years ago.

    edit: didn’t think of the volcano stuff that was mentioned above me. Carry on.
     
  11. strat_strummer

    strat_strummer Most Honored Senior Member

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    Quartz vein and yes gold is attracted to quartz.
     
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  12. Mouse

    Mouse The Knees of Rock

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  13. cranky

    cranky Senior Stratmaster

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    Interesting point. I do live at the edge of what was long ago a huge body of water called Lake Lahontan. And there are other fish fossils in today's western deserts, e.g. the one along Highway 14 somewhere around Lancaster, CA.

    But, you know, with all the deer, cougars, bears and coyote roaming these lands for centuries (I see deer bones frequently) . . . and the rapid land transformations that can happen with our winds, earthquakes and avalanches . . . who knows.

    I'm not aware of any volcano closer to me than up in Washington or Yellowstone's supervolcano.
     
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  14. micmurph

    micmurph Strat-Talk Member

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    You found Hoffa!
     
  15. BluesForDan

    BluesForDan Strat-O-Master

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    I see that all the time around here. Extrusion vein. Occurs miles underground, brought to surface through tectonics and weathering. What's mind-blowing is to see towering strata in nearly vertical orientation. What used to be flat and level and now deeply embedded in rock and nearly 90° perpendicular to its original state. The Sierras are where plates meet.

    https://yubanet.com/regional/study-...ore-than-twice-as-fast-as-previously-thought/
     
  16. cranky

    cranky Senior Stratmaster

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    Well I'll be a monkey's uncle

    I'm a bit north of Mammoth. But still.
     
  17. Boubou

    Boubou Senior Stratmaster Silver Member

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    I found a bunch of these while digging in the garden. Hard rock with small shells embedded in them. I am about half a mile from the river but water was never here and to have the shells embedded in the rock it must have been a long time ago. Oh yes I bought a mammoth tusk pick just to have a piece of ancient times
    6ED77989-8E21-4E33-822F-510CB59C79F1.jpeg
     
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  18. Exhead

    Exhead Senior Stratmaster

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    Not far from where I live as the crow flies. I live not far from what remains of Lake Lahontan. Never visit there as it is nasty.
     
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  19. nickmsmith

    nickmsmith Dr. Stratster

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    I was a full-on adult before I realized stuff like this. I think geology is a very underutilized field in schools, and it’s a very cool subject. I had no clue that the Midwest USA was once at the bottom of the ocean.

    I realize that fossils can be a very touchy subject in my neck of the woods, a decent percentage (including some of my friends) believe the earth is 4-6000 years old, and teaching to the contrary is an affront to some people. wonder if that’s why it’s mostly avoided.
     
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  20. Boubou

    Boubou Senior Stratmaster Silver Member

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    Just wrote to the city,insectarium/Biodôme/botanical garden, etc, they are usually good in answering question, though it’s not quite their field, I hope thy can direct me to the proper knowledgeable people
     
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