Hike to Dinosaur Tracks

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Two hundred million years ago a dinosaur walked here and left his footprint in the mud.

This is my last journal page on the area around Dinosaur National Monument.   This hike is in Red Fleet State Park, not too far from Vernal, Utah.  The hike was a fairly strenuous 3 miles round trip, but interesting when we reached the tracks. Dinosaur tracks are only found in a few places in the world.

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Much of the trail is over rock so it is marked with painted dinosaur tracks. Without these markings it would be pretty hard to stay on the trail.

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Plants

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Rock Formations

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The hike climbed to an overlook where it was possible to see the lake at Red Fleet State Park.IMG_0010

Good shoes are needed for this hike as the terrain is rough.

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The tracks are close to the edge of the lake

IMG_0046It isn’t evident at first where the tracks are.  There are signs with a map showing where to look.

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The tracks belonged to a dinosaur called Dilophosaurus.  The dinosaurs stepped in mud which was filled in with sand.  This was eventually covered with sediment and buried over time, becoming part of the rock.  The footprints were later exposed due to the upheaval of rock and erosion.

There are several hundred tracks (a single imprint).IMG_0069 There are seven identified trackways (two or more imprints from the same dinosaur).

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We sat down and had a snack and rehydrated

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A lone magpie wandered along the water’s edge

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People out on the water

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The hike out involved a lot of climbing

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We were pretty spent when we finished the hike but it was interesting and different than any other place we’ve visited.