Western Center for Archaeology
2345 Searl Parkway, Hemet, CA 92543
Call: (951) 791-0033
Incredible New Museum!
A funny thing happened 10 years
ago when the
Metropolitan Water District started drilling 270-feet
below the earth's surface to build Diamond Valley Lake
in Hemet. They found incredible mastodon bones and
artifacts dating back more than 230,000 years. Now
that's what you call a find!
Construction immediately stopped as an awed group of
scientists rushed to the site to uncover and preserve
these extremely rare Ice Age treasures before the
lakebed was permanently flooded.
Some of their unbelievable findings (more than 1
million fossils and artifacts) are showcased in the
new Western Center for Archaeology and Paleontology at
2345 Searl Parkway, Hemet.
The 33,000-square-foot facility of fascination has a
"Snapshots in Time" Main Gallery, featuring Max, the
largest mastodon ever discovered in the Western United
States (10-feet tall); Xena, a 12-foot-tall,
10,000-year-old mammoth and a 7-foot Giant Ground
A 270-degree Immersion Theater in the Round is
cleverly lined with simulated rock benches and
features a Dolby Sound System. The floor is designed
to shake at appropriate times, adding realism to the
movies about dinosaurs and such.
The Discovery Lab has interactive displays, such as
"The Dating Game," a hands-on experience about new
ways to date fossils and artifacts.
At the Center, you will be in awe, peering down at a
see-through floor over a recreated digsite with actual
fossil bones of the great 50,000-year-old mastodon,
This most impressive museum, located in the San
Jacinto Valley, is designed for Education, Research,
Exhibitions & Curations. Wonderful Native American
artifacts and a 9,000-year-old piece of pottery add to
the sensational surprises you'll see when you visit.
Be sure and continue your "awe" next door by stopping
by the new Center for Water Education, funded in part
by a $16 million grant from the Metropolitan Water