• Camarasus skull in the cliff face, rafters on the Green River, McKee Springs petroglyphs

    Dinosaur

    National Monument CO,UT

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Places to Go: Echo Park

Steamboat Rock rises above the Green River and dominates the view in Echo Park.
Steamboat Rock rises above the Green River and dominates the view in Echo Park.
Dan Johnson
 

Echo Park is located in the heart of Dinosaur's canyon country. Here, the Yampa River flows into the Green River, which winds around the massive feature known as Steamboat Rock. The meeting of the two rivers along with nearby geologic faults created some of the monument's most dramatic scenery.

Echo Park provides many opportunities to enjoy remarkable surroundings, discover Fremont petroglyphs or explore the area's homsteading and ranching history. You can watch watch river rafters float past on the Green River. Picnicking and camping are also available in the area. A spectacular display of stars is visible in the night sky due to the lack of any light pollution from nearby towns and cities.


 
Road to Echo Park

The road to Echo Park includes several sharp corners and steep grades just after it leaves the Harpers Corner Road.

How to Get to Echo Park
Echo Park is located 38 miles from the Canyon Visitor Center which is near Dinosaur, Colorado. The first 25 miles are on the paved Harpers Corner Road. The last 13 miles requires driving on unpaved roads. These roads are impassable when wet and are recommended for high clearance vehicles only. Right after you leave the Harpers Corner Road, you will descend quickly down several switchbacks. Before heading to the Echo Park area, stop at the visitor center for information on road conditions or call (970) 374-3000.

 
Picnic Area
Picnic tables are available in the Echo Park Campground. Several are located near the banks of the Green River and surrounded by spectacular scenery. The campground has vault toilets. Drinking water is available seasonally (usually late-May through late September).
 
Campers enjoy one of the walk-in sites at the Echo Park Campground.

Campers enjoy one of the walk-in sites at the Echo Park Campground.

NPS

Camping
Echo Park Campground has 22 sites suitable for tent camping including one handicapped-accessible site and four walk-in sites. A few sites have shade.The campground has picnic tables, firepits, and a vault toilet. Drinking water is available seasonally (usually mid-May to late September). When water is available a fee of $8.00 per site, per night is charged. Echo Park Campground is open year-round, but there is no winter maintenance on the dirt road leading to the campground. Access to the campground requires high-clearance vehicles. RVs and trailers are strongly discouraged due to sharp turns, steep grades, and rough roads. More information on camping at Dinosaur National Monument …
 
Hikers walk along the beach near the confluence of the Green and Yampa Rivers.

Hikers walk along the beach near the confluence of the Green and Yampa Rivers.

NPS, Dan Johnson

Hiking
There are currently no established trails in the Echo Park area, but several routes do exist. The easiest is a short, level walk to the confluence of the Green and Yampa Rivers. Here you can see the brown, muddy waters of the naturally flowing Yampa River mixing with the clear greenish tinged waters of the Green River. Use caution along the river banks, as they can collapse without warning. This walk starts from the end of the road, just past the river access point. Follow the river shore to the northeast. During periods of high river flows, the sandy beaches may be covered by water.

Other off trail routes exist such as hiking to Mitten Park or past Jenny Lind Rock and into lower Sand Canyon. Anyone planning to explore these areas should carry a map and compass and know how to use them. You should also make sure you have plenty of water and appropriate gear for the weather.

 
A rafter passes by Steamboat Rock

A river rafter floats around Steamboat Rock

NPS

River Rafting and Boating
Multi-day raft trips pass by Echo Park. Many of these raft trips will stop at Echo Park to refill water bottles or take a hike. Rafting Dinosaur's rivers requires both skills, in-depth planning and a permit. More information on how you can raft Dinosaur's rivers …

 
A group of visitors takes a look at the gash in the sandstone known as Whispering Cave.

A group of visitors takes a look at the gash in the sandstone known as Whispering Cave.

NPS

Whispering Cave
Located approximately one mile from the Echo Park campground along the Echo Park Road, this fissure in the sandstone rock provides a cool and shady spot to rest on a hot day.

 
Pool Creek Petroglyphs

Pool Creek Petroglyphs
These unusual petroglyphs are located approximately 1½ miles from the Echo Park Campground. They can be easily seen with an easy walk from the road. These petroglyphs feature dot-pattern designs and are high above the creek along the rock face.

Did You Know?

Photo of paleontologist Earl Douglass.

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.