Articles | Volume 17, issue 6
Clim. Past, 17, 2515–2536, 2021
https://doi.org/10.5194/cp-17-2515-2021
Clim. Past, 17, 2515–2536, 2021
https://doi.org/10.5194/cp-17-2515-2021

Research article 03 Dec 2021

Research article | 03 Dec 2021

Climate and ecology in the Rocky Mountain interior after the early Eocene Climatic Optimum

Rebekah A. Stein et al.

Data sets

Blue Rim escarpment geochemical data Rebekah Stein and Nathan Sheldon https://doi.org/10.17632/z6twpstz4r.2

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Short summary
Modern climate change drives us to look to the past to understand how well prior life adapted to warm periods. In the early Eocene, a warm period approximately 50 million years ago, southwestern Wyoming was covered by a giant lake. This lake and surrounding environments made for excellent preservation of ancient soils, plant fossils, and more. Using geochemical tools and plant fossils, we determine the region was a warm, wet forest and that elevated temperatures were maintained by volcanoes.