Rock Type: Gray shale
Formation: Allegheny
Interval: 5-Block seam
Age: Middle Pennsylvanian Period, approx. 303 million years.

The pith cavity of Calamites is hollow. When shifting meanders of ancient deltas washed over stands of these prehistoric plants it opened these cavities which easily filled with the sandy sediments the currents were carrying.

Therefore, the characteristic pattern we associate with Calamites is actually a pseudofossil, or non-organic cast of the hollow, inner pith cavity.

1. View a close-up image.


Location: Lincoln County, West Virginia; Copley Trace Surface Mine #2, located about 10 miles west of Atenville, West Virginia. Take Route 68 west for 3 miles, turn left on Route 68 / 1 (Francis Creek Road) and drive approximately 6 miles. Veer left up Kiah Creek, continue approx. 1.5 miles to Copley Trace. Take next right, proceed up ridge past Meeks Cemetary. Truck access only.