Rockhounding and Fossils

A paleontologist holds a carnivorous dinosaur tooth found on the Colville River on Alaska’s North Slope, by Paxson Woelber via Wikimedia Commons

Rarely do we walk on the beach on Kachemak Bay without coming back with rocks and shells in our pockets. The simple act of picking things up and learning about them can be a rich part of exploring the outdoors, adding depth and a sense of belonging to the place. Collecting is a deep urge for a lot of us. Of course, you have to do it ethically, without harming the places we all love, and so there’s a bit to know about it. On today’s program, we’ll be talking about rockhounding with folks who get serious about geology and finding specimens to keep. And we’ll spend time with scientists who find real treasures, the fossils of dinosaurs that once lived in Alaska. I want to learn what kind of dinosaurs were here, why they were here, and how paleontologists have put that story together.

Listen now:

HOST: Charles Wohlforth


  • Robert Blodgett, paleontologist
  • David Yesner, archaeologist at UAA
  • Montana Hodges, author of books on rockhounding
  • Phillip Elliott, Mat-Su Rock and Mineral Club


BROADCAST: Thursday, May 14, 2015, 2:00 – 3:00 p.m. AKDT

REPEAT BROADCAST:  Thursday, May 14, 2015, 9:00 – 10:00 p.m. AKDT

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Audio to be posted following broadcast