Depots and Dinosaurs . . .

Today started out slow but ended up being fairly busy.

My first job was to get outside and caulk the roof seam right over the window next to my computer desk. We’ve had a lot of rain since we got here at Galveston Bay RV Park right before Thanksgiving. And during the last several downfalls, I’ve started to get some water leaking in down the inside of the window.

So I got out my ladder and my trusty caulk gun and went at it. The seam I was trying to seal is where the roof rolls down and meets the vertical side. I had caulk part of this a couple of years ago, but as it turned out it was a length of the original caulk that had a lot of voids and holes in it. I caulked about 2 feet of the seam, and we’ll see how it does over the next several days.

The reason I wanted to get the problem fixed today is that we’re expecting 4 days of solid rain.

My next task was to call Westland Sales out in Clackamas, OR. I need a new door switch for our Splendide washer/dryer. Lately it has developed an intermittent problem of not wanting to open at the end of wash or dry cycle. Sometimes it will open immediately, sometimes it takes overnight.

So a new switch was needed. When I talked to Westland, the tech said it’s a known problem with this model and he was surprised it lasted this long. A new one will be about $80 and will go out First Class today. I always have gotten great service from Westland.

Luckily I will be able to replace the switch from the front and won’t have to pull the washer out of the cabinet.

About 3:30 Jan and I headed out for dinner and some errands. Our first stop was at a local feed store where we were finally able to find Jan some deer corn. Or at least we will find it there when we go back tomorrow afternoon after their shipment comes in. So hopefully that is taken care of.

Our next stop was at the TGI Friday’s across the Interstate from Baybrook Mall. We haven’t been there for several years and thought we’d try it again. Don’t know why we haven’t been back more. We’ve always enjoyed it and this time was no exception.

Then it was right down the road to the Home Depot for a return. When I bought caulk last week, I thought I was buying one tube of clear and one of white, but ended up with two of white. Guess they were mixed up in the bins

Our last stop was at Kroger’s. Jan’s going to make a big batch of veggie soup tomorrow and wanted to get a fresh onion and some garlic, along with a few other things.

Hot soup sounds great for these next few cold rainy days.

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Thought for the Day:

"It is virtually impossible to clean the pond as long as the pigs are still crapping in it"

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Here’s a repost of our visit to Thermopolis, WY in 2011, and our tour of a fantastic dinosaur museum.

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Dinosaurus . . .

Originally posted on July 23, 2011

After coffee and bagels we headed over to Al and Adrienne’s a little before 10 am to pick them up at their rig. Then it was off for the 85 mile trip south to Thermopolis, WY.

Arriving there, our first stop was lunch at Lil’ Wrangler Family Restaurant. Al and Adrienne had eaten here a while back and said it was really good. And they were right. Hamburgers made with 1/2 pound hand-formed patties of fresh ground beef.

Really good.

After lunch we headed over to the object of our trip, The Wyoming Dinosaur Center, the largest privately-funded dinosaur research center in the world. And the only one to have excavations in progress on their own property.

Wyoming Dinosaur Center Sign

Wyoming Dinosaur Center

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This is a cast of an ocean bottom containing hundreds of echinoderms, relatives to today’s sea stars and sand dollars. This fossil is about 300 million years old.

Echinoderm

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This is a pterosaur, one of the earliest flying dinosaurs. Although this one is about the size of crow, other species had wingspans as large as 30 feet.

Pterosaur

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A Dimetrodon.

Dimetrodon

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Archaeopteryx is considered the first bird, since it had feathers. There are only ten specimens of this dinosaur in the world, and this is the only one in America.

Archaeopteryx

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A cousin to the Stegosaurus.

Dinosaur 1

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Two meat eaters in combat.

Dinosaur 2

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A Protoceratops.

Dinosaur 3

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A type of Ankylosaurus.

Dinosaur 4

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Triceratops.

Dinosaur 5

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Allosaurus, cousin of T’Rex.

Dinosaur 6

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A nest of baby duckbills,

Duckbill Babies

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And their mama.

Duckbill Mama

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Albertaceratops.

Dinosaur 7

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An Ichthyosaur, the ‘fish lizard’.

Dinosaur 8

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This is Jimbo, so big I couldn’t get him all in one photo. A 106 foot long Supersaurus, he’s one of the largest fossils in existence.

Dino Jimbo 1

Dino Jimbo 2

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At 2 pm we all loaded in a tour bus and were taken about 5 miles out in the country to an active dig site. In the last 20 years 17 dinosaur skeletons have been excavated from here.

Dig Site

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These next two photos show the remains of an Allosaurus that they have been working on for 5 years, and it may take them another 15 years to remove it completely.

Allosaur 1

Allosaur 2

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In the wintertime, this large excavation pit is completely filled in with dirt to protect the dinosaur bones from freezing and cracking.

Allosaur 3

Next we were taken over to a large open excavation under the shed. The bones, mostly of plant-eaters, are lying around on the surface.

Dino Bones 1

Because of the jumble of chewed-on bones, they think this was a kill-site where baby meat-eaters were fed.

Dino Bones 2

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Outlined in red paint, this is the footprint of a large Allosaurus.

Allosaur Footprint

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And this is the footprint of a large plant-eating dinosaur. This is the only known location where both dinosaur footprints and fossils are found in the same area.

Dino Footprint

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We really enjoyed our time at the Dinosaur Center, and it’s well-recommended. The displays are all top-notch, and very well done.

Leaving the Center, we drove up into the country behind the Hot Springs State Park just admiring the many unique rock formations, and rich colors.

Round Rock

Thermopolis Scenery 1

Thermopolis Scenery 2

Thermopolis Scenery 3

The many hot springs in the area have been a tourist attraction since the late 1800’s, and are considered the largest mineral hot springs in the world.

Just how mineralized the water is can be shown by these ‘travertine beehives’.

A 8 foot pipe is stuck in the ground over a hot spring. The mineral-laden water flows out the top of the pipe and down the side, leaving the mineral deposits behind on the pipe. It slowly builds up and expands, creating these rock-hard ‘domes’. As the dome grows, more pipe is installed on top as necessary.

Travertine Dome

After another great day of exploring, we got back to Cody a little before 6, and after dropping off Al and Adrienne at their rig, we came back home, tired but having had a great time.

A little before 7 pm, we walked a few rows over to Lu and Larry Tillotson’s, readers of our blog who discovered we were in the same park and wanted to meet us.

We had a great time getting to know them and talking over some of our experiences in traveling fulltime. They’ve been on the road for 8 years now, still enjoying the RV life. Hopefully we’ll cross paths again soon.

And tomorrow . . . ?

Nothing, I hope. It’s time for a rest-up day.

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Thought for the day:

"The word bipartisan means some larger-than-usual deception is being carried out." – George Carlin

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5 Responses

  1. The Wyoming Dinosaur Center & dig site sounds like fun. I’m placing it on my “Got To See List” Thanks

  2. It is a good thing you figured out the switch for your washer dryer before you did a load of important laundry!

  3. Janet,

    We really enjoyed it, especially be able to go out to an actual dig.

  4. That clear caulk comes out white and dries clear after a couple of days… I had that problem this summer when I was caulking the back splash in the RV’s kitchen… Thought for sure the tube was mismarked…

  5. Rod,

    I hadn’t even opened the tubes yet when I discovered the problem.

    I always use the DAP 3.0 and it comes in three colors – white, crystal clear, and light gray.

    The color is marked on the tube. I just grabbed one out of the white bin and one out of the clear bin.

    But then didn’t look close enough to be sure I had one of each.

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