We spent the weekend in Dinosaur National Monument with our friends, Zach and Kenzie. Super fun and a little wet. Dinosaur NM is a small parcel of federal land tucked away on the Utah/ Colorado border just outside of Vernal, UT. It is a beautiful little park with hikes, dinosaur fossils, great camping spots, and river rafting.
We left from Provo, UT on Friday around 2 and with little traffic, we were able to get up to Vernal around 5 in the afternoon. We stopped at the local grocery store to buy food for the trip (see my meals post). With another 20-30 minute drive, we got to the park and our campsite. We stayed at the Green River campground. The campground looked well taken care of, on the river and the campsites weren’t too smashed together. We setup camp and cooked dinner while being sprinkled on with a little rain that picked up every so often. It was quite cold at night so we put Juniper in one of Allyse’s long sleeve shirts for the night (she wasn’t too excited about it).
Saturday, we got up and the weather looked good with only some strong winds in the afternoon. After eating breakfast, we headed over to the visitor center and exhibit hall. It was super cool to see the huge wall of dinosaur bones and explanations about them and other fossils that the exhibit hall had. Zach and I hiked down to the visitor center from the exhibit hall, while our wives drove back down. On the hike, we saw a couple of other exposed fossils, but there were others that we could’ve searched around for but didn’t.
Our wives had to work on some homework and other stuff, so they headed back into Vernal for wifi, while we went over to Desert Voices trail. Desert Voices is a loop hike the has a connector trail to the Sound of Silence loop trail. Hike hiked about 4 miles that started out flat, but after about a half mile, we started to climb up out of the canyon we were in. We, of course, listened to the “Sound of Silence” by Disturbed on the Sound of Silence trail. We climbed up a couple of the gigantic sandstone fins and got a 360 degree view of the surrounding landscape to give a beautiful view of the striped sandstone on one side and the Green River flowing through plains on the other side.
Our wives rejoined us and we did a short easy hike up the Hog’s Canyon and visited Josie Morris cabin. We then headed back to camp and ate dinner. We ended the night sitting around the fire for a while and sitting on the river bed looking up at the stars. Throughout Saturday, we did get some heavy wind, but it mostly cleared by nighttime. It sprinkled during the night a couple of times.
We got up early to pack up and head home. Allyse and I went down to the river and got amazing pictures of the sunrise. We were able to pack everything up before it started pouring. Our friends got most of their stuff put away so I helped as it was dumping on us. It actually got to the point that rain had completely soaked through my water resistant pants, but it was all a fun experience and good that it came as we were finishing packing. We stopped for breakfast before heading home and cleaning up our gear.