Rocky Road Trip Day 6: The Royal Tyrrell Museum

  • Royal Tyrrell Museum’s paleontology gems
  • Bad food with good vibes
  • Foreign birthday beer

They might make fun of their elitist tree-hugging counterparts on the coast of British Columbia, but Albertans aren’t anti-intellectual, anti-sustainability, or anti-government. It’s a kinder, softer version of the American heartland over here. They drive to their megachurches in pickup trucks, but still believe in science and evolution, which is why one of the best paleontology museums in the world is located in rural Alberta.

Today we drove from Brooks to Drumheller. 

In Brooks we walked through the Dinosaur Provincial Park, which is a UNESCO World Heritage site on account of its being a dinosaur graveyard. Today in Drumheller, we visited the museum in which most of the fossils and bones are sorted and put on display for the general public.

The museum is called the Royal Tyrrell Museum, which houses a vast collection of dinosaur bones, fossils, and other cool stuff. Josh had visited when he was a kid, and since then the museum has been modernized thoroughly with impressive displays, stellar lighting, interactive exhibits, and other things that make a world-class museum. Allow several hours to experience it all.

Although there are tons of fun stuff for kids (and what kid doesn’t already love dinosaurs?), child-free adults like us did not feel overwhelmed by the noise or the nuisance, because the museum is huge. It is large enough to house several different T-Rex skeletons, and that’s only the beginning. There are some short walks you can do around the museum in the stunning desert scenery, but you can also drive to places like Horse Thief Canyon and the Hoodoos for extra scenery.

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Canola glowing yellow in the evening sun at Horse Thief Canyon, Alberta.

Drumheller itself has little to offer except maybe for kids. It was grim for food and drink. We were stuck in a B&B (more like someone’s house) which, although friendly, made it impossible to self-cater. Fortunately for Josh, he had a sentimental attachment to a diner called Bernie and the Boys. He remembered it from when he visited here as a kid. Although I found my pizza sub inedible, Josh was grinning like a little boy seeing a T-Rex as he chomped his pizza burger. And we haven’t even got to the Stampede yet.

At midnight, we began my birthday celebration by cracking a bomber of beer into the bedroom. Even in Drumheller, we found new beer. Granted, it was mediocre beer from the States drank in plastic cups, but new beer is new beer.

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