Dinosaur National Monument Reopens to Visitors
Contact: Dan Johnson, Chief of Interpretation and Visitor Services, (435) 781-7702
Dinosaur National Monument re-opened to visitors today. Visitors can access public areas and roads immediately. Dinosaur National Monument has been closed since October 1 due to the lapse in Congressional appropriations.
The Quarry Visitor Center near Jensen, Utah is open daily 9:00 am to 5:00 pm. The Quarry Exhibit Hall will be open the same hours as the visitor center through this Sunday. Starting Monday, October 21, access to the Quarry Exhibit Hall will be by car caravans. Caravans leave from the visitor center at 9:30 am, 10:30 am, 11:30 am, 1:00 pm, 2:00 pm, 3:00 pm and 4:00 pm. Staff will offer our final ranger-guided hikes for the season on the Fossil Discovery Trail on Friday and Saturday at 10:00 am. For more information on the visitor center or exhibit hall, please visit the park website or call (435) 781-7700.
In addition to the dinosaur fossils in the Quarry Exhibit Hall, on the Utah side of the monument, the Cub Creek Road is a 6-mile scenic drive beginning east of the Quarry Visitor Center. Visitors in this area can see numerous petroglyph sites, explore the Josie Morris homestead, or hike into several box canyons located nearby.
On the Colorado side of the monument, the Canyon Visitor Center located near Dinosaur, Colorado is now closed for the season. The Harpers Corner Road, a scenic 32-mile one way drive that leaves U.S. Highway 40 two miles east of Dinosaur, Colorado is open. The Echo Park and Yampa Bench Roads are also open for high-clearance vehicles. Visitors should first check the conditions of these roads before planning a trip.
The Green River Campground, located near the Quarry Visitor Center, is now closed for the winter. The Split Mountain Campground is open first-come, first-served to all visitors. Water has been turned off for the winter and no fees are charged. Water has also been turned off for the winter at the Echo Park and Deerlodge Park Campground. Primitive Camping is still allowed and no fees are charged. The Gates of Lodore Campground on the monument's north end will continue to have water available until the end of October.
Fall is a wonderful time to visit Dinosaur National Monument. Summer heat is gone, days are often sunny, and nights are crisp. Solitude is readily available. Wildlife, like deer, elk and bighorn sheep, may be seen along the rivers and roads. Please be alert for animals crossing the roads particularly at dawn and dusk.
Remember that Dinosaur's weather is unpredictable and can change rapidly. Visitors should always be prepared for a range of conditions and check the current forecast before heading out. Please ensure that someone knows where you are going and when you are expected to return. With proper planning and preparation, Dinosaur National Monument offers over 210,000 acres for exploration and inspiration.
Did You Know?
Paleontologist Earl Douglass first came to Utah looking for mammal fossils. He returned in 1909 and discovered an immense deposit of dinosaur bones, now protected at Dinosaur National Monument. Although made famous by dinosaurs, Douglass died preferring his beloved mammal fossils over dinosaurs.