Berlin-Ichthyosaur_State_Park

Berlin-Ichthyosaur State Park

The Berlin-Ichthyosaur State Park is a state park of the U.S. state of Nevada. Located approximately east of Reno in the United States, it contains a preserved ghost town and several undisturbed ichthyosaur fossils of the species Shonisaurus popularis.

The town of Berlin sprang up in 1896 when substantial gold veins were discovered nearby. In total, the Berlin mine produced 42,000 troy ounces of gold, all removed from tunnels by hard rock mining techniques. The mine became unprofitable by 1911, and the town of Berlin became uninhabited shortly thereafter.

Today the ore mill still stands, and the stamps and mercury float tables can be viewed. Several additional buildings are extant along with headworks on some of the mine shafts. Guided mine tours are provided by park personnel, which proceed approximately into a tunnel that connects with the Berlin mine. All other access to the underground works is prohibited and considered extremely dangerous.

Ichthyosaur fossils were first discovered in the area in 1928. Excavations were conducted through the 1960s, and the remains of approximately 40 ichthyosaurs were found. Until 2004, these remains included the largest Ichthyosaurs ever discovered. Several specimens were left where they were found (in situ), and can be viewed by the public. These specimens are protected from the elements by a large barn.

The park, east of Gabbs in far northeastern Nye County, has camping and picnicking.

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