- Collect fossils. A little over 8 miles is a road cut and quarry where early to middle Devonian fossils can be collected from rocks of the Needmore Formation. Notable fossils that can be found here include nautiloids whose remains have turned into fool's gold and well-preserved specimens of the trilobite Phacops. Other local fossils include the bivalve Praecardium multiradiatum, brachiopods, straight-shelled nautiloids, corals, crinoids, and the gastropod Loxonema.
About 9 miles southeast of Franklin late Silurian to early Devonian fossils can be found in the road cuts alongside Route 23. The most common fossils here seem to be the brachiopod Nucleospira elegans. Other local fossils include calcareous algae, the bryozoan Fenestella, corals, cystoids, the gastropod Platyceras, sponges, and trilobites. Author Jasper Burns has recommended this site for its ease of collecting and beautiful scenery.
Twelve miles west of Franklin proper and half of a mile east of the Germany Valley Overlook is a series of roadcuts along Route 33 where late Ordovician fossils can be collected from the Reedsville Formation. Most specimens in this area are fragmentary. Local fossils include bivalves like Ambonychia, brachiopods like Orthorhynchula, bryozoans, crinoids, the gastropod Sinuites, the graptolite Climacograptus, straight shelled nautiloids like Michelinoceras, very large ostracodes, and trilobites like Isotelus.
|Routes through Franklin|
|Weston ← Elkins ←||W E||→ Harrisonburg → Richmond|
|Cumberland ← Moorefield ←||N S||→ Jct → Covington|