A Simple Guide to Visiting Dinosaur National Monument
Cross-published at AnotherMomMess.com
Lilly and I had the chance to visit Dinosaur National Monument recently, two years after our initial plans to visit, thanks to the pandemic.
Dinosaur National Monument is located in the Uinta Mountains on the border of Utah and Colorado. Covering over 210,000 acres the monument offers camping, numerous hiking trails, petroglyph and pictograph viewing, and is one of the few places in the United States where you can see hundreds of fossils in one location (and even touch some real dinosaur bones.)
Dinosaur bones were first discovered here in 1909 by paleontologist, Earl Douglass and in 1915 President Wilson declared the quarry a national monument.
We stayed at Townplace Suites by Marriott using a combination of cash and points. The hotel was nice, it’s currently undergoing some renovations but the staff was fantastic, the room was clean, and they have a nice indoor pool.
Spring is a perfect time to visit Dinosaur National Monument as the weather is mild and you can hike mid-day in 70′ weather. I highly recommend parking at the Main Visitor center and then taking the 1.5 mile round trip hike to the Quarry visitor center. Along the way, you can view petroglyphs and fossil sites, lizards, and a variety of other animals native to the area.
In addition to the Monument, the Utah Field House Museum in Vernal, Utah offers additional insights into the different fossils, plant life, and dinosaurs from the area.
While we chose to eat most meals in our room (Townplace Suites provides a small kitchenette with a full fridge, microwave, stove-top, and dishwasher) I can recommend Vernal Brewing Company for great (though a little pricey) dining choices. The Allosaurus Ale was quite enjoyable, along with my Evil Burger and side of Brussel sprouts.
Stay tuned to the Geek Parenting Podcast YouTube page for a complete trip review coming soon.