Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Rancho La Brea

Nestled within the city of Los Angeles is a pit of tar. Well, not tar really but asphalt. I know it seems backwards, but asphalt is actually the lowest grade of crude oil. Tar is produced when organic substances, like peat or coal are distilled. I won't spend forever going over the geology of the area, so if you're interested (and you should be), you can visit the Asphalt & Hancock Park FAQ page. All your tar/asphalt questions will be answered!







Most of what you see here is water from heavy rainstorms that moved
through LA the previous week. The water floats on the asphalt!

Do you see the ripples in the water?

Methane escaping! Or as Attenborough would say mee-thane.

Over 1 million bones have been recovered at La Brea, and the discoveries (as well as the entrapment of animals) continue to this day.










The species that wins the award for the most bones present at La Brea? The Dire Wolf.
With bones numbering in the several thousands.







This Dire Wolf mural reminded me of Gmork. The Page Museum is big on murals, which I like.

Murals, murals, murals!

And the bones, man! Look at the bones!

There's also a conservatory in the center of the museum. There are koi, turtles, and lots of little birds. I didn't take pictures of any of those things, however. I only took this picture looking out over the conservatory...it reminded me of Jurassic Park. Monika agrees.



Monika and I also saw a woman point to a stork skeleton and tell her pre-teen son, Look, honey! It's just like the one that brought you to me when you were a baby. Sounds like someone should prepare to be a father at fourteen. I could hang out at the tar pits all day and not just because I want to see a pigeon get stuck in the asphalt.

Mom seconds that.  

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