Parque Natural Mexiquillo



Shonisaurus popularis, a species of Ichthyosaur, is Nevada's state fossil. Shonisaurus were giant marine reptiles that reached lengths of 49 feet and gave birth to live young. They appeared in the Earth's oceans 250 mya and prowled the ocean depths seeking prey for the next 155 million years. 

For years I have wanted to visit the Shonisaurus fossil site, but it is off the beaten path and I never took the time to make the long drive out there. But since Cliff and I were experiencing a little cabin fever, we decided the cure was a road trip. 

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This is a life size relief of  Shonisaurus

The Shonisaurus fossils were discovered in 1928. Excavations began in 1954 and continued for the next seven years. A total of 37 fossils were unearthed at 6 different fossil sites

Shonisaurus vertebra 

Shonisaurus ribs

There is a very nice campground here with shaded tables, water and a dump. All for $15 a night


Adjacent to the fossil site is the small weather beaten mining town of Berlin. Silver was discovered here 1863. The Berlin Mine was in operation form 1897 to 1910. It was a 60/40 mine, 60% silver and 40% gold. In the 13 years of operation they extracted $849,000 in precious metals. 

The mill is the largest building on site

An abundance of old rusty stuff 

Looking out at the long long road to Berlin. Only the last mile unpaved

The old stage coach stop

Back in the day