The Judith River Dinosaur Institute, established in 1993, seeks to follow Simpson's creed. It is the mission of JRDI to promote the science of paleontology in a meaningful way to the general public. Imagine uncovering bones of these ancient creatures and YOU being the first living thing to see them in 150 million years! Many have described it as a surreal experience---something hard to describe but life changing nonetheless. Some have come to appreciate not just the fossils but our place as humans within earth's vast timeline. Still others just come to unwind, have fun, and learn something about their favorite childhood "monsters" and their world.

This summer, the JRDI team invites those interested in dinosaurs, geology, and natural history to participate in a six-day long experience under the big sky of Eastern Montana. Specimens recovered by JRDI are studied by scientists so as to add to the "treasures of human knowledge". Our program is not just for the casual vacationer looking for a day trip but for those who are seriously seeking to learn about the science.

We invite you to become a detective in deep-time crime along with us. You'll leave knowing, like a fossil hunter, you helped resurrect long lost dragons and preserve them for future study and imagination. We guarantee you will never look at a dinosaur the same way again!

JRDI Staff

For dig space availability call 1-406-696-5842 or email


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NEW! 2011 Dig Video

David Paulsen,
Analytical Chemist - retired

"Intellectually stimulating - look, listen, touch; it was so easy to learn from these folks. They really know what they are doing and are so willing to share. I picked a physical challenge and pace I could handle and the bones just kept coming. Then in the evenings- food, fire, friendship, and sleep comes so easy. By the time it was over my range of motion had improved tremendously. I'll be back!"