Over the Easter long weekend I flew home to Calgary to celebrate my belated birthday with family and friends. The highlight of this weekend was my day trip to Drumheller, a small prairie town that’s home to the world’s largest dinosaur fossil museum. I was a dinosaur fanatic as a kid and I would visit Drumheller annually, but when I turned into my teens this tradition was retired. I have many fond childhood memories in various parts of Drumheller, so this day trip was a very nice walk down the memory lane.
One odd thing about the prairies is that weather changes here can be drastic and it’s possible to experience all four seasons in a day. When I left my house in the morning it was -2°C, so I dressed up warmly in my shearling-lined shirt (last seen here) and my winter parka. But as the afternoon swung by, the sun came out and it warmed up to 20°C! I was sweating and had to have air conditioning cranked up in the car. I guess it wouldn’t hurt to keep a pair of shorts in my trunk next time.
Drumheller lies within what’s known as the badlands of Alberta. Similar to what you would find in Arizona, this area is dry, rocky, and flat. The badlands were originally a mining site until it eventually became North America’s largest fossil excavation site. The Albertan badlands are famous for the “hoodoos”, the mushroom-shaped rock formations pictured below. These rocks are the result of countless years of erosion, but unfortunately they are deteriorating due to damage from extreme weather conditions. I remember there being many more hoodoos when I last visited over a decade ago, but now it seems that there remains only few that are still standing strong.
The Royal Tyrell museum is the main tourist attraction for Drumheller. It is the world’s largest dinosaur fossil museum and it is home to the world’s most complete Tyrannosaurus Rex skeleton. I had a great time exploring this museum and imagining all these creatures’ former glory.
Other than the museum and the landscapes, there are some interesting historical landmarks around Drumheller that originate from the region’s former days of mining. This little church is one of them. It only seats six people and it was built back in the day for a small group of miners to attend mass.
The Star Mine Suspension bridge is another historical landmark. This bridge crosses the Red Deer River and was constructed back in 1931.
The Atlas Coal Mine is Canada’s last standing wooden coal tipple and today it is recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage site. During the summer visitors can go on tours and take train rides down into the mines.
Not only is Drumheller home to the world’s largest dinosaur museum, it’s also home to the world’s largest dinosaur statue. He is accompanied by many other small dinosaur statues that are scattered across the town.
Thank you so much for reading about my travels!
Shirt Jacket : Forever 21 (last seen here) │ Tee : H&M (worn underneath) │ Coat : Topman │ Sweatpants : Forever 21 │ Boots : Forever 21