Petrified Forest National Park
These petrified logs are located along the Giant Logs Trail behind the Rainbow Forest Museum. The common fossils trees include named genera Araucarioxylon, Woodworthia, and Schilderia, along with other plants including cycads, horsetails, ginkgoes, ferns, conifers, and others. These trees grew on an ancient coastal floodplain and were preserved after being toppled, transported, and buried by mud during floods. Although many places in the world have analogous environmental settings, modern studies suggest that none of these ancient plants have modern living equivalents. The fossils preserve a record of life in the Late Triassic Period (NPS, 2007; Ash, 2003). The Late Triassic Period was 235 to 201.5 million years ago (GSA, 2009).
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Last modified: 1/10/2011