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Travel back in time to explore the world of the Champlain Valley when the Adirondack Mountains were as high as the Himalayas. Or to the time when beluga whales and seals swam in the salty waters of the Champlain Sea. Touch a live sea star, build your own mountain, or try your hand eroding rocks. These activities and much more await your explorations as you uncover the mysterious time Before the Basin.

Beluga Whale Dig

Did you know that whales once swam where cows now roam? Become a paleontologist with goggles, brush, and chisel - unearth re-created whale bones entomed in "sediment" from Charlotte, Vermont. Step back and view the full skeleton of a Beluga whale replica and spot the blow hole - the definitive feature - a confirmation that aquatic mammals once swam in a salt water sea where ECHO stands today.

The whole family will enjoy getting up-close to the animals in the Champlain Sea.Awesome Forces

Experience the power of wind, water, volcanic action, glacial scouring, and other larger-than-life geologic forces that shaped the landscape we see today in the Champlain Basin. Awesome Forces immerses the visitor in the sights, sounds, and textures of billions of years of dramatic geologic history during this multi-sensory theater adventure.

Champlain Sea Tidepool

Sea stars, purple urchins, feisty hermit crabs, elegant anemones, and other unusual salt water creatures inhabit this marine tidepool display. Enjoy a close-up view or - if you dare - gently touch one of these sea creatures that once called Lake Champlain home, before it evolved into the fresh water lake we know today. Borrow a magnifying hand lens and zoom in on the bizarre appendages of these animals. Join Animal Care Staff and experience how a sea star or an urchin actually moves its food. Find out why and when marine life existed in Lake Champlain.
Awesome Forces



2015 Leahy Center for Lake Champlain - ECHO Lake Aquarium and Science Center - One College St. - Burlington VT 05401 - 802.864.1848 - 1.877.324.6386
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