Unless you have been hiding under a rock, you or someone you know is playing Pokémon Go.
In Alberta, Pokémon hunters have been spotted everywhere from graveyards to mountain tops. The good news is, people are getting active this summer while chasing the elusive Pokémon characters outside and, as an added benefit, are visiting attractions that they may not have seen before. In this spirit, our geoscientists or “rock experts” at the Alberta Geological Survey (AGS) have come up with a few of their top geological sites in Alberta to check out.
While we can’t guarantee that you will catch characters like Geodude, Pikachu, and Squirtle, we can guarantee that if you look up from your phone, you will learn more about Alberta’s geological wonders in these five locations.
- The Frank Slide. See the place where Canada’s deadliest rockslide from Turtle Mountain buried the town of Frank, killing more than 90 people in 1903. To this day, AGS continues to monitor the area for any movement of the mountain.
- Drumheller. This is the “Dinosaur Capital of the World,” where geologist Joseph Tyrrell discovered dinosaur bones over a century ago. There are many fossils and rock formations to see both inside the Royal Tyrrell Museum and outside—the “U” shaped Horseshoe Canyon is a must-see.
- Philip J. Currie Dinosaur Museum. Celebrate the first anniversary of this Grande Prairie museum and learn more about Alberta’s journey "From Paleo to Petroleum.” If you want a glimpse at how paleontologists work, check out the museum’s living research lab.
- The Big Rock. If this enormous rock near Okotoks looks out of place, it’s because it is. Over 10 000 years ago, glacial ice carried the rock from the mountains and melted, leaving the rock in a prairie landscape.
- Writing-on-Stone Provincial Park. Visit Writing-on-Stone and you will discover how the park got its name when you see the indigenous carvings and paintings on sandstone that tell stories, some believed to be 5000 years old. Be sure to check out the mushroom-shaped rocks called the hoodoos in the Milk River valley.
After all of that adventure, if you find yourself interested in the work that the AGS does and the Alberta locations where it carries out research, visit the AGS website.