Recently, on our trip to Utah, we took a special trip out to Vernal, UT – 3 hours there and 3 hours back. The website URL for Vernal is www.visitdinosaurland.com. Dinosaur tourism seems to be one of their biggest industries. Thankfully, some of Caleb and Andrew’s cousins decided to take the road trip with us.
Our first stop was the Utah Field House of Natural History. Here we got to see dinosaurs nicely assembled like in most Dinosaur museums. The dinosaur below is a Diplodocus – the most prominent feature of the Field House lobby.
They also had an outdoor dinosaur park. Here we are in front of the Woolly Mammoth. Although, I don’t think a mammoth is a dinosaur.
Who’s the most ferocious T-Rex of all?
Then we went to the National Dinosaur Monument. This was the unique site that we drove 3 hours to see. There is a wall with over 1500 dinosaur bones embedded. Normally, when we see dinosaur bones, they are replicas or casts that are nicely assembled in the form of a dinosaur skeleton. This wall gave you a sense of what real paleontologists deal with. It was like looking into a Lion’s den – a thousand random bones piled and scattered throughout the wall. You get a sense of how difficult it is to put together the puzzle of even one dinosaur. It seems nearly impossible.
You also get to touch the dinosaur bones. Real dinosaur bone – not just a plastic or bronze cast of one.
All the cousins were working hard to earn their Junior Ranger badge. I love the Junior Ranger program. It really helps the kids appreciate the wonderful National Parks that they are visiting. AND, they get a special treat at the end if they work to earn it.
Our Junior Rangers going through the final audit.
Official Junior Rangers with their official Junior Ranger badges. They take their jobs seriously.
The trip was just in time to make it into Caleb’s GoKids Newsletter Issue #2 about dinosaurs.