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Contact: Dan Johnson, (435) 781-7702DINOSAUR, Colo. – The Great American Outdoors Act (GAOA) Legacy Restoration Fund (LRF) is financing preservation work on Dinosaur National Monument’s historic Wade and Curtis Cabin at Gates of Lodore.
“This funding from the Great American Outdoors Act is helping preserve the heritage of the Northeast Utah and Northwest Colorado region,” said Superintendent Paul Scolari. “We are fortunate to have skilled craftspeople lead this restoration effort and train the park team in historic construction techniques that will help us preserve history for current and future visitors. Without these critical repairs, the structural integrity, unique historic features of this cabin, and its role in Dinosaur’s history would be imminently lost.”
Renovations are being completed on both the interior and exterior of the cabin. The work includes repairs to the roof, walls, windows, and foundation, the addition of new flooring, electrical outlets, exhibit lighting, an accessible walkway, and an improved drainage system.The work is being performed by a Maintenance Action Team (MAT) composed of skilled craftspeople from the National Park Service (NPS) Historic Preservation Training Center. The NPS dedicated approximately $20 million from the 2023 LRF program to MATs in order to address deferred maintenance needs for 108 projects in 85 small and medium-sized parks. MAT teams consist of NPS staff who are trained in historic restoration and preservation work. They travel to national parks to perform smaller, but critical, maintenance rehabilitation and repair projects on historic structures. MATs enable the NPS to complete projects that require consistent high-quality work from skilled craftspeople at a time when fewer people are practicing traditional trades.
First constructed in 1923 in Zenobia Basin, the cabin was moved to its current location in 1933 as a tourist camp by businessmen Jim Crozier and John Grounds. A second similar cabin was constructed three miles downriver and recreational boat trips were operated between the two sites. Crozier and Grounds campaigned for the expansion of Dinosaur National Monument and a ‘Canyon of Lodore National Park’ with a hope to increase tourism to the area, but the onset of World War II and declining visitation forced the camp owners to give up their claim to the site. In the 1950s, the National Park Service used the building as a patrol cabin until the current Lodore Ranger Station was constructed in the 1960s. In 1986, the cabin was listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
After the rehabilitation and preservation work is completed this year, new interpretive exhibits will be installed in the cabin in 2024. Beginning in 2025, it will be opened as an interpretive facility to help visitors understand the geology, ecology and history of the Green River and Canyon of Lodore.
Infrastructure funding from GAOA is part of a concerted effort to address the extensive deferred maintenance and repair backlog in national parks. Supported by revenue from energy development, GAOA's Legacy Restoration Fund provides up to $1.3 billion per year for five years to the National Park Service to make significant enhancements in national parks to ensure their preservation and provide opportunities for recreation, education, and enjoyment for current and future visitors.
For more information, call (435) 781-7700, or follow DinosaurNPS on social media.
Last updated: July 25, 2023