Dinosaur National Monument – “Dinosaurs once roamed here. Their fantastic remains are still visible embedded in the rocks. Today, the mountains, desert and untamed rivers flowing in deep canyons, support an array of life. Petroglyphs hint at earlier cultures. Later, homesteaders and outlaws found refuge here. Whether your passion is science, adventure, history or scenery, Dinosaur offers much to explore.” – NPS
With over 800 paleontological sites, Dinosaur National Monument is best known for its well-preserved fossils, with visitors flocking to see the nearly 1500 bones preserved within the Dinosaur Quarry Exhibit.
But for me, it was more about the epic landscape. Straddling the Utah boarder in northwest Colorado , the Yampa and Green Rivers have carved incredible 2,500′ canyons through the red sandstone.
I had my pup with me who unfortunately isn’t allowed on any trails within the park and since it was topping 100° when I was there, I was pretty confined to hanging out near my car at the main overlooks. That definitely wasn’t the worst thing, but I would love to get back and explore on foot and even more-so, get on an overnight rafting trip through the Gates of Lodore.
Out of all my adventures throughout the western US, this may be one of the best sneaky surprises that I’ve found yet. Dinosaur National Monument is one of the coolest places I’ve ever seen!