Home Archaeology, Geology & Paleontology Paleontology Workshop at Ghost Ranch with Randall Irmis and Nathan Smith – G24080207

Paleontology Workshop at Ghost Ranch with Randall Irmis and Nathan Smith – G24080207

Aug 04 – 10 2024

This program invites participants of all backgrounds to step into the world of paleontology at the world renowned quarries at Ghost Ranch.

Hands-on Fossil Excavation: Under the guidance of expert paleontologists, participants will learn essential excavation techniques as they unearth fossils from the rich geological deposits of Ghost Ranch.

Laboratory Analysis: Take a closer look at the fossil specimens you’ve uncovered. Engage in a fascinating hands-on laboratory experience where participants will clean, categorize, and analyze their finds. Discover the tools and methods used by paleontologists to unlock the secrets hidden within the ancient remnants.

Paleontological Interpretation: Delve into the science of paleontology as our knowledgeable facilitators share insights into the significance of the fossils discovered at Ghost Ranch.

Requirements: Participants must be physically capable of outdoor activities, including hiking and light excavation work.

Suitable clothing and footwear for outdoor exploration are recommended.


  • Dr. Nathan D. Smith
    Dr. Nathan D. Smith

    Dr. Nathan Smith supervises the Dinosaur Institute staff and conducts research on dinosaur evolution. He holds a B.A. from Augustana College, M.S. from the University of Iowa, and Ph.D. from the University of Chicago, and was a professor at Howard University before joining the Natural History Museum of LA County in 2015. Fieldwork has taken Nate to Antarctica, Argentina, China, and the western USA. His research is funded by the National Science Foundation, and focuses on the evolution of Triassic–Jurassic dinosaurs and the use of comparative methods in paleontology. The origin and diversification of dinosaurs represents one of the most poorly known events of vertebrate evolution, and Nate’s work in Ghost Ranch, New Mexico and Antarctica has filled major gaps in our understanding of early dinosaurs and their world. His Antarctic field program is featured in the 3-D IMAX® movie, “Dinosaurs of Antarctica”, and he co-curated the traveling exhibit “Antarctic Dinosaurs”.

  • Randall Irmis