Ranger-led activities are a great way to discover more about Dinosaur National Monument. The greatest number of programs are offered from late May through mid-September with Special Events and other programs added as staffing allows. Ask at a visitor center or look on the Calendar of Events page for more details.
Please Note: Programs may be canceled due to adverse weather for visitor and employee safety, or staffing shortages caused by emergencies such as fire or medical situations.
2019 Regular Program Schedule
Fossil Discovery Trail Hike
Daily at 10:00 am from May 24 through September 15, 2019
1½ hours / 1.2 miles
Discover fascinating fossils and evidence of ancient ecosystems on a hike from the Quarry Exhibit Hall to the Quarry Visitor Center. Meet at the Quarry Exhibit Hall shuttle stop.
Difficulty: Moderate. This trail includes some stairs and is not recommended for people with a fear of heights. Wear good walking shoes, bring water, wear sunscreen and a hat.
Junior Ranger Program
Daily at 10:30 am and 2:30 pm from May 24 through September 2, 2019
Join a ranger at the Quarry Exhibit Hall to learn more about dinosaurs and other topics. Free Junior Ranger Activity books and badges are available anytime at visitor centers and quarry.
Thursday & Friday from 9:30 am to 4:30 pm from July 18 through August 23, 2019 (no Dino Demo on August 1 or 2)
Stop by for as long as you like
See fossil conservation in action! Meet Geoscientists-in-the-Parks and Mosaics in Science Interns on the back patio of the Quarry Visitor Center for a behind-the-scenes look at how paleontologists preserve and protect the monument's fossils.
Campground Evening Program
Wednesday, Friday & Saturday at 7:30 pm from May 24 through July 31; at 7:00 pm from August 1 through September 7, 2019
Meet a ranger in the program circle in the Green River Campground for an evening talk. Topics vary from geology, history, wildlife and more. Additional nights may be added as staffing allows. Parking is available in B Loop for non-campers.
Stargazing with Telescopes
Wednesday & Saturday at 9:45 pm from June 26 through July 20; at 9:30 pm from July 24 through August 10; at 9:00 pm from August 17 through August 31; at 8:45 pm on September 4 and 7, 2019
Meet rangers and volunteers at the south end of Split Mountain Campground for naked-eye constellation tour and telescope viewing, weather permitting. Parking is available for non-campers. Please cover flashlights with red cellophane (provided) to preserve night vision. Bring a blanket or chair to the viewing area, sit back and look up! This program is best for children over the age of 5. No pets allowed near the telescopes or on night hikes. Program start times vary with the sunset. Ask at the visitor centers for more details. Full moon hikes will take the place of Stargazing with Telescopes on Wednesdays July 17 and August 14.
Night Hike Under Moonlight
At 9:00 pm on Monday, June 17; at 8:45 pm on Wednesday, July 17; at 8:00 pm on Wednesday, August 14; at 7:30 pm on Friday, September 13, 2019
90 minutes/ 1-2 mile hike and sky viewing
Explore the park after dark! Wear good shoes, bring water and a flashlight. The night hike on June 17 will take place in Echo Park and travel along the Confluence Trail with a focus on John Wesley Powell. The night hike on July 17 will meet at the Quarry Visitor Center and travel up the Fossil Discovery Trail with a focus on the 50th Anniversary of the Moon Landing. Check back for meeting locations and themes for other months.
Night Sky for the Naked Eye
Monday at 9:45 pm from June 24 through July 15; at 9:30 pm from July 22 through August 5, 2019
20-60 minute talk and sky viewing
Join an Astronomy Volunteer-In-Park at the south end of Split Mountain Campground to learn how to identify features you can see in the night sky with just your naked eye. Parking is available for non-campers.
Introduction to the Quarry
Daily at 10:30 am and 2:30 pm from September 3 through September 15, 2019
Have all (or most) of your questions answered about why and how dinosaur fossils were fossilized, excavated and exposed at the Quarry Exhibit Hall. Short talks at the quarry are also available by request at anytime while the Quarry Exhibit Hall is open.
2019 Special Events
The Sesquicentennial Colorado River Exploring Expedition visits Dinosaur
On May 24, 2019 a team of academics, graduate students, artist, authors, and journalists will embark on a 70 day, 1000 mile traverse of the Colorado River Basin, launching from Green River, Wyoming. This expedition is not a reenactment of the past, but rather a re-envisioning of our future that engages traditional, historic, and contemporary river ecosystem perspectives to derive proactive management strategies, integrating community values, science, and humanities through an analysis of culture, informed management, and traditional ecological knowledge.
Saturday, June 1 10-11:00 am Gates of Lodore Boat Ramp Meet & Greet
Find out what the expedition members have experienced so far in their first week, what they have planned for downstream, and how you can be part of the journey. Followed by a hike on the Lodore Nature Trail.
Tuesday, June 4 7:30-8:30 pm Green River Campground Evening Program
"Exploring the Confluence of Reclamation and Restoration" with guest speakers James Prairie, Hydrologic Engineer with the Bureau of Reclamation, and Tildon Jones, Supervisory Fish Biologist in the Green River Basin Fish & Wildlife Conservation Office at the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service.
Journeys with Powell's Journal
The following series of programs are presented by the United States Forest Service, National Park Service, Bureau of Land Management, and United States Fish and Wildlife Service in recognition of the 150th anniversary of John Wesley Powell’s first scientific expedition along the Green and Colorado rivers in 1869. How will your observations of iconic landscapes along the Green River compare with those written in the journal of John Wesley Powell? Hear the words in the locations that inspired them. Easy hikes accompany most readings. Bring a sketchpad or journal to record your impressions today.
"A flaring, brilliant red gorge..."
Saturday, May 25 3-3:30 pm Red Canyon Visitor Center
Monday, May 27 11-11:30 am Flaming Gorge Dam Point
Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area, Ashley National Forest, Utah
"Our first experience with canyon rapids..."
Saturday, June 1 10-11:00 am Gates of Lodore Boat Ramp & 11 am-Noon Nature Trail
Gates of Lodore, Dinosaur National Monument, Colorado
"All the feathered songsters..."
Saturday, June 1 1-1:30 pm Jarvie Fest Speaker Tent
John Jarvie Historic Site, Bureau of Land Management, Colorado
"The stars appear to be in the canyon..."
Saturday, June 8 7:30-8:30 pm Hike & 9:30-10:30 pm Stargazing with Telescopes
Gates of Lodore Campground, Dinosaur National Monument, Colorado
"A chapter of disasters and toils..." (excerpts from June 9-17)
Virtual Tour on Facebook/DinosaurNPS, Twitter & Instagram@DinosaurNPS
"Our words are repeated with startling clearness..."
Monday, June 17 9:00-10:30 pm Full Moon Hike
Tuesday, June 18 9:30-11:00 am & 1:30-3:00 pm Readings & Confluence Hikes
11:00 am - 2:00 pm Lunch provided by Visit Moffat County
Noon - 1:00 pm Guest Speaker
Echo Park Campground, Dinosaur National Monument, Colorado
"The Green is greatly enhanced by the Yampa..."
Wednesday, June 19 10:30 am - Noon or 7:00 - 8:30 pm on the trail. If participating through the Uintah County Travel & Tourism Day Trips program, meet at Utah Field House in Vernal at 9:00 am or 5:30 pm to caravan to Harpers Corner.
Harpers Corner Trail, Dinosaur National Monument, Colorado
"I spend the day among the rocks..."
Saturday, June 22 2:30-3:30 pm
Rainbow Park Campground, Dinosaur National Monument, Utah
"We soon debouch into a beautiful valley..."
Wednesday, June 26 7:30-8:30 pm
Green River Campground, Dinosaur National Monument, Utah
Skies Over Dinosaur Astronomy Festival
Save the dates of August 28 through September 1 to celebrate the newly announced certification of Dinosaur as an International Dark Sky Park. Check back for more information.