Trails, auto tours, campgrounds, and backcountry areas are open all
the time except when limited by weather conditions.
Visitors should wear clothing appropriate for the season and activity
in which they are participating. A good stretegy is to wear clothing in
layers. Suitable footwear for hiking in rough terrain is important.
FEES, COSTS, RATES:
The park entrance fee is $10.00 per vehicle. Special fees for commercial
tours and buses apply. Phone (435) 789-8277 for an educational group entrance
fee waiver or more detailed information.
Camping fees vary depending on the season and facilities. Be prepared
to pay from $6.00 to $12.00 per night. Rates for the reservation-only group
campsites at Split Mountain group campground are higher. For more information
on campgrounds see the Camping Facilities section.
Fees and non-commercial river permits are required for private white
water river trips on the Green and Yampa rivers within the park. For information
on fees, equipment and experience requirements, and how to apply for the
permit lottery, call (970) 374-2468.
FACILITIES AND OPPORTUNITIES:
Visitor Centers and Exhibits:
Dinosaur Quarry Visitor Center contains exhibits on the Jurassic dinosaurs
that lived here, their ecosystem and the science of paleontology. Ranger
talks are given during summer months and there is a fine book store.
Headquarters Visitor Center contains exhibits on what to do, river
canyons, and human history of the park. There is a 10-minute orientation
slide program and book store.
Self-Guiding Auto Tours:
There are two self-guided, paved road tours (tour guide booklets are available
at visitor centers or beside the road at the start of the tours):
-- Near Dinosaur Quarry Visitor Center is the "Tour of the Tilted
Rocks", a 22-mile round-trip drive that exposes the complexity and beauty
of Dinosaur. The drive takes 1 to 2 hours and will guide you to prehistoric
petroglyph sites, a nature trail, up-turned rocky scenery of Cub Creek,
and the shaded, cool, historic Morris homestead.
-- Near Monument Headquarters Visitor Center is the "Journey Through
Time", a 62-mile round-trip drive along the Harpers Corner Road that takes
you up and across the beautiful Blue Mountain Plateau. The drive takes
2 to 4 hours and will guide you along a gently winding paved road to spectacular
scenic overlooks, several nature trails, picnic grounds, and the steep
unpaved Echo Park Road that drops into Echo Park and the Yampa Bench, the
heart of the monument (not passable when wet). If you hike Ruple Point
Trail or drive down to Echo Park, plan to spend the entire day. The Harpers
Corner Road is the entrance into the canyon backcountry of Dinosaur.
Self Guiding Nature Trails:
Desert Voices Nature Trail is near the Dinosaur Quarry. It is 1 1/2 miles
long and is moderately difficult. The trail is an introduction to issues
and management of Dinosaur N.M. and has trail signs for kids, written and
illustrated by kids.
Sound of Silence Route is near the Dinosaur Quarry. It is 3 miles
long and difficult to hike. You will learn to find low impact hiking routes
in the backcountry and how to hike safely. This is a great route to experience
Cold Desert Trail located at Monument Headquarters. It is 1/2 mile long
and an easy walk. The trail is an introduction to flora and fauna of the
desert shrub community.
Plug Hat Trail is along the Harpers Corner Road. It is 1/4 mile in length
and an easy walk. The trail is an introduction to flora and fauna of the
pinion and juniper forest community and offers spectacular views of the
Harpers Corner Trail is at the end of Harpers Corner Road. It is 1 1/2
miles in length and moderately difficult. The trail is an introduction
to dramatic geologic features and leads to breathtaking views of the canyons
of the Green and Yampa rivers.
Gates of Lodore Trail is at the end of the campground road at the Gates
of Lodore. It is 1 mile in length and an easy walk. The trail offers spectacular
views of the river gorge and introduces you to some of the plants and geology
of the area.
Brief ranger talks are presented about dinosaurs and paleontology at the
Dinosaur Quarry Visitor Center every day during summer months. A variety
of longer talks and guided walks are offered each day throughout the park
during the summer. These programs take you to the most interesting parts
of the park. You will discover wildlife, geology, Indian cultures, rare
plants, and historic characters of the park. Evening talks are presented
at the Green River Campground most nights during the summer.
Lodging and camping facilities:
There is no lodging in Dinosaur National Monument. There is, however, camping.
Campsites are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Green River
Campground ($12 per night) usually does not fill up during the summer.
Limit of stay is 14 days. Vehicles or trailers in excess of 35 feet are
prohibited. No RV hookups. Water is turned off in the fall to prevent freeze-up
and is turned on in the spring. When water is not available, a camping
fee is not charged. Green River Campground has one wheelchair accessible
Groups can reserve a group campsite at the Split Mountain
Group Campground in the spring and summer months. The group campground
contains four sites, water, and modern restrooms. Sites are available only
by reservation (fee required). Phone (435) 789-8277 for information and
to make a reservation.
No food, beverage or other supplies are available within the monument.
Full services are available in Vernal, Utah and Craig and Rangely, Colorado.
Limited supplies and services are available in Dinosaur, Browns Park and
Maybell, Colorado, and Jensen, Utah.
Other Concessions, NPS-Managed Visitor Facilities and Opportunities:
The non-profit Dinosaur Nature
Association operates bookstores at Monument Headquarters and Dinosaur
Quarry visitor centers. To order materials or a catalog phone (800) 845-DINO.
We recommend you review the following information before you visit:
Park approved commercial river concessionairs provide one day and multi-day
white water river trips down the Green and Yampa rivers. River trips are
one of the best ways to experience the monument.
The Monument Headquarters Visitor Center is fully accessible. The Dinosaur
Quarry Visitor Center is minimally accessible. The ramp at the Quarry Visitor
Center was not designed for wheelchairs. A free pamphlet describing the
upper level exhibits is available. Restroom facilities are moderately accessible.
Disabled visitors can drive directly to the Quarry Visitor Center and avoid
the summer shuttle bus. Primitive accessible toilet facilities are available
at Lodore Campground and at the end of Harpers Corner Road. A fully accessible
campsite is located at Green River Campground. There is an accessible trail
at the Plug Hat picnic area.
RECOMMENDED ACTIVITIES, PARK USE:
The resources of Dinosaur are so varied and numerous that there is something
here to interest and surprise almost anyone. Activities range from bird
watching, photography, sightseeing and fishing to general sloth and lollygagging;
from sight seeing by car to walking, backpacking, and white water river
For commercial concession river trips: Reservations are strongly recommended,
walk-ins for day trips are often available.
The following activities require a permit:
-- Private non-commercial river permit phone (970) 374-2468.
-- Backcountry camping and horse packing permit phone (970) 374-3000.
-- Research collecting permit phone (970) 374-3000.
-- Special events permit phone (970) 374-3000.
-- Commercial photography or filming permit phone (435) 789-2115 ex 4002.
-- Commercial activity permit phone (970) 374-3019.
BASIC VISIT RECOMMENDATIONS:
On arrival at Dinosaur you will be disappointed if you do not allow a full
day to a week for your visit. At a bare minimum allow 1 to 2 hours to see
the fossil dinosaur bones and unique exhibits at the Dinosaur Quarry.
Next, drive the Tour of the Tilted Rocks auto tour which begins
near the Quarry. The drive takes 1 to 2 hours and will allow you to begin
to appreciate the beauty of the park. To see rugged and spectacular canyon
landscapes drive the Journey Through Time auto tour which begins at Monument
Headquarters and takes 2 to 4 hours to complete.
Along your travels you will come to six different nature trails within
Explore for hidden surprises in the Deerlodge area. After the middle
of July, the Deerlodge Campground is one of the quietest places in the
park. Angling for catfish, visiting the many historic cabins in the area,
and hiking into Disappointment Draw are activities to soothe the soul.
Become absorbed by the alternating sun and shadow, calm and wind of
Steamboat Rock in Echo Park. Ponder the ancients or a fat trout in Jones
Hole. Adventure out the mysteries and unsurpassed views of the primitive
Yampa Bench Road.
Spend the night at the Gates of Lodore Campground in Browns Park, a
quiet, little-used campground. Lodore and Browns Park are remote areas,
often overlooked by visitors. The imposing red, vertical rocks of Lodore
Canyon loom on the horizon of the gentle Browns Park valley. Tucked away
aloof, and hidden, are petroglyphs, historic copper mine coke ovens, an
historic cemetery, a swinging bridge over Green River, Browns Park National
Wildlife Refuge, and the reconstructed historic Jarvie Ranch which is managed
by the Bureau of Land Management.
Jones Hole canyon, originally cleft by a geologic fault, is today caressed
by a crystal clear, spring-fed creek. A well placed artificial lure or
fly could bring a battle (special fishing regulations apply and a Utah
license is required). Jones Hole is one of the prettiest spots in the park.
A fish hatchery, petroglyphs, waterfall and more await. This is a great
place for a family to spend the day.
Consider taking a commercial river trip which are available from 1 to
6 days in length.
No special events or programs are planned at this time.
The desert is fragile. Think about your impact, multiplied by hundreds
of thousands of people each year. Set a good example and learn about the
special nature of the desert. Use good judgement. Support the National
Park Service mission of preservation of our nation's natural and cultural
heritage. Fear your own actions more than you fear the law. If you have
any question about the impacts you might have or about the laws involved
, ask a ranger before you do it.
Collecting any cultural or natural object (arrowheads, rocks, flowers,
bugs, etc.) removes the object so others cannot enjoy it and is not allowed.
Hunting or disturbing wildlife is not allowed. Placing your name and date,
or other graffiti, on cabins and rock faces, or other cultural and natural
features is not allowed. Driving your vehicle off maintained roadways will
scar the soil and damage plants. Treat the park and what is in it as if
it is your own property, because it is yours to care for.
ADJACENT VISITOR ATTRACTIONS:
Utah Field House of Natural History State Park,
Vernal, UT (435) 789-3799
Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area,
Vernal, UT (435) 885-3315
Ashley National Forest, Vernal UT (435) 789-1181
Bureau of Land Management, Craig CO (970) 824-4441
Bureau of Land Management, Vernal UT (435) 789-1362
Expedition Island Park, Historical Museum,
Green River, WY (307) 872-6435
John Jarvie Historic Ranch (BLM)
Browns Park, UT (435) 885-3307
Browns Park National Wildlife Refuge (970) 365-3613
White River History Museum, Meeker, CO (970) 878-9982
Rangely History Museum, Rangely, CO (970) 675-2612
Meeker CO Chamber of Commerce Colorado (970) 878-5510
Craig CO Chamber of Commerce (970) 824-5689
Vernal UT Chamber of Commerce (435) 789-1352
Dinosaurland Travel Board (Utah) (800) 477-5558
Dinosaur CO Welcome Center (970) 374-2205