Oak Springs Trilobite Area is located in Caliente. Use our Caliente trip planner to visit Oak Springs Trilobite Area on your trip to Caliente, and learn what else travelers and our writers recommend seeing nearby.
Oak Springs Trilobite Area reviews
When passing through this very remote area, it's a good place for a stop. The exposed shale is completely picked over, so you may want a rock bar or something to get at fresh shale. There's very... more »
This is a BLM spot about a dozen miles south of Caliente on highway 93 - easy to find, there is a prominent road sign. The road to the dig site is sand and gravel, but easy to travel with a standard.... more »
Gem! Or, fossil (yuk yuk). This place is FREE to visit, very remote, but at the time of our multiple visits in 2017-2019 it was free to bring home fossils. They even keep tools to borrow at the trail register. You can find fossils without having to dig if you sort through the shale pieces discarded by other hunters. Lots of trilobite heads and ferns. Good information at the trailhead (you can even compare your fossils to the pictures to identify the species of your trilobite!). It's a short detour by car, short and clearly-marked trail, and quick way to get hands on fossil experience! The surrounding area is also fun for high clearance 4wd vehicles or hiking. Bring water and sun/rain protection (we got rained on in summer and it was a bit chilly).
Very short drive from Hwy 93 to the site. Then it's about a 1/4 mile walk to the site. We went on a whim, after many times passing that BLM sign. Happy we did! After only about 20-30 minutes, we'd found about 7-10 fossils. None fully in tact, mostly just heads, but still very cool. Definitely make sure you have water. No facilities of any kind, but there are some tools in a way-finding box at the beginning of the trail. Honestly, we weren't really prepared to break shale and just scoured the ground and still found a few reasonable specimens.
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