Visitor Center Activities

Park Orientation Film

The current park film is shown on request in the visitor center auditorium. It is a 12 minute video that explains park features. Work is in progress for a new, updated, fully accessible park film to start being assembled in 2017.
 
elementary student art showing 6 ideas for a parade float featuring Hagerman Fossil Beds
Ideas for parade floats featuring Hagerman Fossil Beds in 2016

NPS

Temporary Displays

In the visitor center auditorium is it not unusual to see special displays and exhibits. In 2016 student displays created for the National Park Service Centennial took pride of place. In 2017 the park will feature Idaho Junior Duck Stamp art entries.
 
The Hagerman Horse

This fossil cast of a skeleton shows the star of Hagerman, Equus simplicidens. Over 200 individuals have been pulled from the Hagerman Horse Quarry. Because of safety concerns the skeleton is a cast, not actual fossil pieces. Fossil pieces would be fragile, in danger of collapse, and possibly radon emitting.
 
Other Park Fossils

Hagerman Fossil Beds is nationally and internationally significant for its world-class paleontological resources. It includes the world's richest fossil deposits, in quality, quantity, and diversity from the late Pliocene epoch. Many of its fossils represent the last vestiges of species that existed before the last Ice Age, the Pleistocene, and the earliest 'modern' flora and fauna. The Monument's paleontological resources are contained in a continuous, undisturbed stratigraphic record spanning at least 500,000 years. The fossils deposited here appear to represent an entire paleontological ecosystem with a variety of habitats such as wetland, riparian, and grassland savanna.

While best known for its fossil horses, Hagerman holds many titles, including
  • Largest accumulation of the single-toed horse, Equus simplicidens.
  • Largest accumulation of the giant otter, Satherium piscinarium.
  • North America's third most important site for Pliocene birds.
  • Numerous type species (first found and described here) such as: peccary (Platygonus pearcei), swan (Olor hibbardi), deer mouse (Peromyscus hagermanensis), vole (Ophiomys taylori), grison (Trigonictis cooki), pronghorn antelope (Ceratomeryx prenticei), a giant badger (Ferinestrix vorax), and large cat (Puma lacustris).
  • Continuing research and the identification of new species.
 
Simulated Dig Activity

For safety reasons there are no places in the park where you can go and see fossils in the ground. It is very common for hillsides to collapse, sometimes doing considerable damage. So that you can appreciate the skills needed to find, uncover, and protect the fossils there is a simulated dig area.
 

Last updated: June 18, 2017

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

PO Box 570
Hagerman, ID 83332

Phone:

(208) 933-4105

Contact Us