The Green River flowing through Ouray National Wildlife Refuge
Unusual rock formations in Fantasy Canyon
Exploring the Jones Hole Trail
A landscape of mountains and canyons
Boating adventures among rock formations
An abundance of fossils throughout the region
Rugged and majestic canyon and Green River views
Leisurely stroll through dinosaur exhibits
A place for Jurassic-style relaxation and recreation
Outdoor Activities and Jurassic History in Vernal
Plan a picnic at Green River or Split Mountain. Hitch onto the camper or load up the tent; there are plenty of camping spots available for a night under the stars. Enjoy a quiet hike on the “Sound of Silence” trail, or scream and holler as you experience whitewater rafting down the Green River. Exploring Dinosaur National Monument on foot will allow you to view massive arches and rarely seen petroglyphs. Don’t forget to stop by Josie’s Cabin in Cub Creek. If you love Wild West stories, this is one you’ll want to know.
Vernal is home to three state parks: The Utah Field House of Natural History Dinosaur Museum, Steinaker and Red Fleet Reservoir state parks. You can have your boat launched and ready for a day on the water in less than 20 minutes from downtown. Don’t have a boat? Don’t let this stop you; Steinaker is home to Vernal Beach, where you can enjoy a day building sandcastles, swimming or playing on the dock. There are lots of picnic tables, camp sites and pavilions. Red Fleet has been referred to as the “Little Lake Powell” with its gorgeous scenery and huge red cliffs. Don’t forget to watch out for dinosaur tracks as you play and explore the land around the lake. The Field House museum is a hands-on experience where visitors can learn more about the history of the area, view rocks in the mineral room, watch a movie about the fossils that are found in the area, and see paleontologists working on newly discovered fossils from the observation window in the new curatorial facility.
If you want to ride world-class trails, you came to the right place. You can pick your pleasure: Slick Rock, Alpine Forests or Desert Canyons. When the summer months bring sizzling temperatures to the valleys below, biking in the Uinta Mountains is at its best, with small crowds and great trails. Bike Magazine proclaimed the Vernal network of trails “Better than Moab?”
Dinosaurland is also about rivers. After all, a river is what created the “Wall of Bones.” Rafting the Green and Yampa rivers is one of the best ways to see the area. Rafting through the Gates of Lodore, Split Mountain or Flaming Gorge Dam will be an experience you will not forget. Your heart will race from the exhilarating rapids as you wildlife and scenery only seen by those that travel the area by raft.
Make your next adventure getaway in Dinosaurland and Vernal. You’ll want to stay forever, just like the dinosaurs did!
Vernal lies in Ashley Valley, which was named after a fur trader who floated down the Green River into the valley in a bull boat made of animal hides.