About The Ice Age Discovery
The community of Snowmass Village has developed “mammoth” fever since the startling discovery of juvenile Columbian mammoth bones made while bulldozer operator Jesse Steele was working on the expansion of Ziegler Reservoir located near Snowmass Village on October 14, 2010. That’s the day Snowmass Village changed forever. Soon after, the excavation went into full swing when Denver Museum of Nature and Science (DMNS) scientists & their team of experts descended upon Snowmass Village and discovered more mammoths, mastodons, a Jefferson ground sloth, gigantic ice age bison, a small deer and a salamander along with well-preserved plant matter, ancient insects and invertebrates revealing an exceptionally preserved Ice Age ecosystem.
Fast forward to May 15, 2011, when a scientific team of 37 experts from 18 institutions from the United States, Canada, Spain and England returned to the dig site. In just seven weeks, crews unearthed more than 4,800 fossils and identified 20 different vertebrate animals from the site including seven large mammals: American mastodon, the most prevalent large animal at the site; parts of at least 10 giant bison; parts of at least 4 ground sloths; parts of at least three Columbian mammoths; along with deer, a horse and an ancient camel. The fossils are currently going through a preservation process at the DMNS.
Scientists are now using the findings as an opportunity to learn more about the Ice Age history of the Rocky Mountains. The museum estimates that between 30 and 50 mastodons have been found making the Snowmass discovery one of the richest Mastodon sites in the world. The Town of Snowmass Village’s Ice Age Discovery Committee, the "Tusk Force," is currently building a long‐term strategic plan to capitalize on the educational and economic development opportunities this discovery can offer.
Check out www.dmns.org for regular updates.