Four centuries ago,

Spanish conquistadors traveled the"royal road" from Mexico city to their northern capital of Santa Fe.  In keeping with the INHL's tradition, Etzold and Davison resolved to retrace the "Camino Real" and explore some of the interlocking past worlds that helped shape our own.

Let us start by journeying 280 million years into the past -- the remote Permian era, when pioneer land animals were taking their first steps across the mud flats of an ancient shoreline.  Their preserved footprints remain entombed within the mudstone of the Robledo mountains near Las Cruces, New Mexico.  Following clues from Jerry McDonald's remarkable book-- " Earth's First Steps: Tracking Life Before the Dinosaurs " -- we visited the "discovery site" where he located one of the world's most comprehensive snapshots of the behavior of Permian Era animal life:

Click to see The Discovery Site ---> 
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