On a recent trip to the San Diego Zoo our kids discovered the magic of fossils. For anyone who hasn't been to the SD Zoo in a while, the new "Elephant Odyssey" exhibit contains a mockup of a tar pit complete with fake fossils for kids to touch. Since the kids all enjoyed this, Tink and I decided it was time to take them to the real Tar Pits.
We arrived early to make sure we had a parking spot. The parking in the surrounding area is extremely limited, and the parking lot itself is very small. $7 for a spot, but you honestly do not have much of an alternative. Up to this point the kids did not know what we were doing. I remembered from years past that the whole park sits above a tar field. It isn't uncommon for tar to "bubble up" in unexpected spots... it has been over 20 years since Tink or I had set foot in this park... wow.
There are 3 of these structures in the already limited parking area. It seems Mother Nature decided to repave the parking lot
Yes that is tar. It has split the asphalt and in some areas would actually bubble. I quickly move the kids past this structure, not wanting to spoil the surprise.
To "us locals" it will forever be known at the Tar Pits
This is "the lake". It is a mixture of tar and water.
Years ago they installed a few replica Mastodons. Ironically the display is inaccurate. Most animals were stuck in shallow pools, like flypaper.
The bridge offers a nice "non fenced" view of the lake.
In other areas that are more tar and less water the tar forms actual bubbles.The escaping gas from the earth below causes the lake to randomly "boil".
This gives a better indication of just how large the lake is.