• "Celebrating the Richness of Paleontology through Fossil Hunting"

Aurora, NC Fossil Trip


Please note, the Mine is CLOSED to collecting - This is an older trip report from 2009. Please don't call the mine or museum asking to fossil hunt in the mine. You can still fossil hunt at the mine tailings in front of the museum. Go to the Aurora page for more information.




Winter Aurora Fossil Trip Report from back in 2009 "And rain fell upon the Earth, but Megalodon Shark Teeth were found!"



This is the steepest ramp I have ever seen entering the mine.

This is the steepest ramp I have ever seen entering the mine.


In the 600th year of the life of Noah, in the second month, in the 17th day of the month, in that day the fountains of the great Tehom were split and the windows of heaven were opened. And rain fell upon... Aurora

This was a horrible weekend to be fossil collecting in North Carolina. Rain fell throughout the day, the temperatures kept dropping until snowfall was in the forecast and the winds picked up. Do you know what it's like to be in 30 some degree weather in sleet on top of those ridges when the wind picks up??? It's Horrible!!! Did I make a 1200 mile round trip just to get pneumonia??

Despite the lack of good weather conditions, the fossil hunting conditions were outstanding! PCS opened up a HUGE swath of the pit to collect in. You could literally collect entire ridges by yourself all day. Plus, there are very nice exposures of Yorktown and Pungo River Fossil Formations. This has got to be the best collecting area in years (and I thought last year was good)!

Our collecting day started off by sliding down this very steep and muddy ramp. We headed toward what looked like nice Yorktown hills. After a while of fossil collecting we slowly migrated toward some nearby ridges with other fossil hunters. While on top of one of the ridges, I looked across the mine, and saw tiny orange dot surrounded by empty ridges near the horizon. I realized this was a collector that had made it the far corner of the mine! This person literally had dozens of ridges all to himself. That had to be stopped! I quickly yelled over to Amy to follow me. Off we journeyed to the far corner of the mine. Once there, we found some nice Yorktown ridges with nobody on them. We spent the rest of the day there carefully searching.

It paid off; I found an outstanding Hexanchus shark tooth, while Amy found a MONSTER 6 inch megalodon shark tooth. This megalodon tooth is 5" in width, and hits the 6" mark on the slant. It would have been 6 1/4" if it did not have feeding damage to the tip. She also found a TINY megalodon, it is only 4.5" in slant. Other finds include a medley of C. hastalis shark teeth, tiger shark teeth, seal material, and some whale teeth and bone.

What a beautiful collecting day! Rain did not fall upon the Earth, Megalodon Shark teeth fell upon the Earth!

Thank you Curtis and PCS for your hospitality in hosting the fossil groups! It's always a wonderful experience. You always have my support!

The megalodon find of the day, a giant 6 inch fossil megalodon shark tooth. It's 6 inches even with the chipped off tip.

The megalodon find of the day, a giant 6 inch fossil megalodon shark tooth. It's 6 inches even with the chipped off tip.



Collectors heading into the mine.  I should have packed a sled to ride down this ramp with.

Collectors heading into the mine. I should have packed a sled to ride down this ramp with.


The collecting area consists of rugged exposures.  A fossil collectors paradise.

The collecting area consists of rugged exposures. A fossil collectors paradise.


The topography is very conducive to finding fossils.

The topography is very conducive to finding fossils.


This is me climbing a Yorktown exposure.

This is me climbing a Yorktown exposure.


Amy is dwarfed by the dragline in the background.

Amy is dwarfed by the dragline in the background.


Even zoomed in, she is still dwarfed by the mine draglines.

Even zoomed in, she is still dwarfed by the mine draglines.




Below are the fossil found from the mine in Aurora, NC


Here are most of the fossil finds for the trip.

Here are most of the fossil finds for the trip.


This is the monster megalodon shark tooth.  It has a 6 inch slant height, even with the feeding damage.

This is the monster megalodon shark tooth. It has a 6 inch slant height, even with the feeding damage.



This is the smaller 4.5 inch megalodon shark tooth that Amy found before it was taken from the matrix.

This is the smaller 4.5 inch megalodon shark tooth that Amy found before it was taken from the matrix.


Here is the fossil megalodon shark tooth cleaned off.  Notice the nasty root... Unfortunate.

Here is the fossil megalodon shark tooth cleaned off. Notice the nasty root... Unfortunate.


Here is a beautiful lower Hexanchus tooth that the rain had just exposed.

Here is a beautiful lower Hexanchus tooth that the rain had just exposed.


The fossil Hexanchus shark tooth cleaned off

The fossil Hexanchus shark tooth cleaned off


This is a Notorynchus tooth that Amy found.

This is a Notorynchus tooth that Amy found.


here is a shark rostral node.  It comes from the snout of a shark, and is kind of weird looking. It looks like some 
sort of Mr. Potato head nose.

here is a shark rostral node. It comes from the snout of a shark, and is kind of weird looking. It looks like some sort of Mr. Potato head nose.


A seal femur bone.  This is the first one for me.

A seal femur bone. This is the first one for me.




Recommended Books for North Carolina Fossil Collecting:



** PLEASE DESCRIBE THIS IMAGE **
Shark Tooth Hunting on the Carolina Coast

by Ashley Oliphant, 2015

This is a great field guide for locating and identifying fossil shark teeth on the beaches of North and South Carolina. It is filled with clear photographs and easy to read descriptions.
There's not too many books about North Carolina Sharks teeth. This one is pretty good!




** PLEASE DESCRIBE THIS IMAGE **
Fossil Shark Teeth of the World

A great book for identifying all those teeth. This book is laid out "as simple as possible." It's ease of use and small size makes it great to carry during collecting trips. This book shows teeth from around the globe, but all the North Carolina teeth can be found in it.




Seal/Dolphin ~ Phoca/Stenella: A Skeletal Comparison of Two Marine Mammals

by John R. Timmerman, 1997

This is a very good book if you want to attempt to identify the numerous bone fragments encountered at this site.
This book can be purchased through the North Carolina Fossil Club - When at their website, click on the publications tab.




Recommended Link

ELASMO.COM

The best site on the web for fossil shark teeth! It's dedicated to Aurora and many other sites!


Get Your Very Own Megalodon Tooth:

These are Authentic Megalodon teeth sold by Fossil Era , a reputable fossil dealer (that I personally know) who turned his fossil passion into a business. His Megalodon teeth come in all sizes and prices, from small and inexpensive to large muesum quality teeth. Each tooth has a detailed descriptions and images that include its collecting location and formation. If you are looking for a megalodon tooth, browse through these selections!



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