Permian Fossils from the Hermit Shale in Sedona
Updated 2/4/13
The Sedona area is a montage of mostly Permian aged (285 million years old) sedimentary strata, ranging from the terrestrial fresh water mud flat deposits of the shales, petrified Sahara like sand dunes of the Coconino Sandstones to the capping Marine layers of the Kaibab limestones. Here, we are going to visit a locality north of Sedona we personally call "Insect Hill" because on our first visit where we found this outcrop, I found a small slab with an fossil insect trackway on the top of a hill. Since then, we have found primarily fossil early conifers and seed ferns preserved as faint impressions in the brownish red shales. Here are a few images of our latest trip there, which we did after a local race which was held nearby. In fact, we could hear in the distance the yells and cheers of the runners and the crowds less than half a mile away.
  Here I am on the slopes of "Insect Hill". Look at all those beautiful shales!
  Colorized version of a line drawing from "Common Fossil Plants of North America" showing a very primitive permian conifer.
  Walchia Frond 1
  Walchia Frond 2
  Walchia Frond 3
  Callipteris Seed Fern (a type of fern tree). These were very rare and we each found one.
  Walchia Frond 4
  Walchia Frond 5
  Walchia Frond 6
  Walchia Frond 7
  Walchia Frond 8
  Callipteris 2
  Close up of Callipteris
  Walchia Frond 6
  Walchia Frond 7
  Walchia Frond 8
  Walchia Frond 9
Paleo HOME