A 2500 Pound Wyoming Bear Found In Big Horns ‘Natural Trap Cave’
According to researchers, Wyoming's Ice Age history is pretty impressive and a few years ago History Channel did a show in 2008 called 'Jurassic Fight Club' to prove it.
In Northern Wyoming, deep in the Big Horn Mountains, lies the Natural Trap Cave that has been the final resting spot for MANY animals and creatures...past & present. The massive pit is shaped like a bell, is 85 feet deep with a 12' by 15' opening at the top. It's basically a sinkhole in the middle of the mountain that animals passing by may not see and fall to their death. Laying at the bottom of this large, natural trap, was thousands of years of fossils proving that Wyoming was extremely active with many creatures LARGE and small.
Through the years, scientists have collected over 40,000 specimen from the pit that revealed mammoth, cheetah, camel, Mega Lions and a Giant short faced bear named Arctodus. Researchers estimate that the giant bear would almost double the largest bears we have on earth today, standing 12 feet tall and the body 15 feet long, weighing in at an estimated 2500 pounds! The GIAGANTIC bear roamed North America until about 11,000 years ago and was so huge, that research has shown it hunted and killed giant mammoth.
Scientist also have found the remains of a MEGA Lion, the biggest cat that has ever lived. The research shows that the Mega Lion made today's lions of the world look like a house cat. At over 5 feet tall, 11.5 feet long and weighing in at over 700 pounds this cat had a bite force of over 1800 pounds!
Paleontologist have done enough research on each of these beasts to know that they lived and hunted in the same areas. Experts feel the trap cave is located on a natural migration trail where for the last 100,000 years animals had been falling in the pit to their death.
The pit was covered with a safety grill by the Bureau Of Land Management after many years of research in the 1970's. In 2014, another team of scientists returned to the pit to find more historic findings. Can you imaging how many issues this bear and cat would cause when spotted by today's tourists?
This location is not the only site that you can learn about prehistoric Wyoming, there are 5 locations within about 6 hours of each other. From Thermopolis to Laramie.
Wyoming Dinosaur Center
Tate Geological Museum at Casper College
Paleon Museum in Glenrock
Wyoming State Museum
The University of Wyoming Geological Museum
Check out this map to find the locations
You can watch the episode of 'Jurassic Fight Club' that highlights these massive giants here.