Columbian mammoth stood fourteen feet tall at the shoulders. It weighed
three to four tons and ate several hundred pounds of food a day. They
were strong swimmers and spent lots of time in the water. That is what
got some of them in trouble a long time ago near Hot Springs, South
Dakota. Thirsty mammoths found a warm spring at the bottom of a deep
hole. They went down to get a drink of water, but the sides of the hole
were too steep for them to get out again. Many years went by. The pond
filled with dirt and other animals. The dirt protected the animal bones.
Then about twenty-five years ago, the site was found. It is called the
Mammoth Site. Scientists have been digging at the site ever since then.
They have found fifty-two mammoths so far. They have found giant
short-faced bears, camels, llamas, and other animals, too.
of South Dakota Department of Tourism