Dinosaur National Monument has two main entrances. The one to the east has a nice 30 mile drive up into the mesas and valleys of the monument, with some beautiful overlooks of the Yampa and Green River Canyons. If you've got a 4-wheel drive vehicle (we didn't) you can drive down into the canyons (as long as it doesn't rain). This section of the monument does not seem to get a lot of visitors or traffic.
The other entrance to Dinosaur National Monument to the west has the main campgrounds, the dinosaur museum and some shorter hikes. The museum consists of a building built right over the excavated rock holding hundreds of dinosaur fossils. The Park Service has also left the workings of the paleantological laboratory intact for viewing and has an updated description of the latest fossils, along with a description of all the fossils left in the rock.
We took a couple of hikes. One of them had some experimental placards along the length which children had written - I didn't think this experiment really worked, since some of the children's interpretations of natural phenomena contained major faults and the Park Service did NOT correct these mistakes. This left the faulty explanation as the only one that visitors would see. The second hike followed a wash up into some hills. After rounding the corner and getting back up into the boonies, it became possible to experience an incredible silence. We could easily hear the blood in our ears. We found both of these hikes very beautiful and interesting, however.
Copyright © 1996, 2001, All Rights Reserved, Marc J. Zeitlin