A fossilized trail or trace fossil occurring in Cambrian sandstone and attributed to an early slug-like organism; (also) an organism responsible for such a trail. Now only (in form Climactichnites) as an ichnogenus name.
The fossilized trail consists of undulating bars and furrows oriented at an angle to the direction of travel, with or without paired lateral ridges. The ichnogenus contains two species, Climactichnites wilsoni and C. youngi, which show minor differences in trail patterns; the name Musculopodus is used to refer to the body imprint of the organism when stationary.
Mid 19th century; earliest use found in Quarterly Journal of the Geological Society of London. From scientific Latin Climactichnites, genus name, irregularly from ancient Greek κλῖμαξ ladder + ἴχνος footstep + scientific Latin -ites.