North America’s Great Lakes region was once the bed of an ancient sea. Fossils abound if one knows where and how to look. Paleozoic fossils of many periods regularly wash up on the shores of Lake Michigan’s Left Coast.
Like this skull of an amphibian, many Great Lakes fossils from the Permian Period (280–235 years ago) have turned into limestone. Though they are eroded and sometimes crushed, skulls are often recognizable.
The 2012 superstorm Hurricane Sandy is mainly remembered for devastating New York City. Sandy was so massive she caused 25-foot waves on Lake Michigan in Chicago, some 900 miles to the west. Millions of stones washed up onto Montrose Dog Beach, the place where Fagan regularly walked her German Shepherd Rosie. A childhood interest was renewed as she collected rocks and fossils on that beach. She continues rockhounding on Lake Michigan’s Left Coast with her second-generation German Shepherd, Ruby.