There is no better paraphrase for "Utah's Scenic Dinosaur Country" than just "Utah." Arguably no other state has as good of a fossil record as Utah, let alone one mingling among the breathtaking geology of so many national parks, monuments and recreation areas.
Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist Mark Osler got a lens full of Utah's spectacular dinosaur country on a trip that spanned the beehive state. See his epic journey through epochs of Utah's prehistory and see where you can follow in the literal footsteps of giants or learn from the Natural History Museum of Utah why Utah is THE best state for discovering dinosaurs.
Utah's top dino destinations as well stops at Zion National Park, Bryce Canyon or Capitol Reef and Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area. Learn more from the Natural History Museum of Utah or check out Dino Trekker below to start planning!
What is Dinosaur Tourism?
Dinosaur tourism is a way to enrich your visit to Utah with astounding paleontology and breathtaking geology. You see, every layer of dramatically exposed rock in Utah tells its own unique story, often hundreds of millions years long.
When you gaze upon contrasting layers of brilliant sandstone, mudstone, limestone and other unique compositions of mineral matter, you are looking directly into time. Deposits like the Morrison Formation of Dinosaur National Monument have locked up in its rock the mysteries of a bygone epoch: terrifying behemoths and long-extinct flora and fauna from wildly imaginative versions of our planet, all thanks to the right variety and combination of rock formations exposed through ages of patient and often whimsical erosion.
How Many Dinosaur Sites Are We Talking?
Check out VisitUtah's Dinosaurs and Paleontology page to see more than a dozen different sites throughout the state to flesh out your dinosaur journey. Whether arriving in Utah through Las Vegas or Salt Lake City, there's a scenic route perfect for you. Incredibly, virtually any visit to Utah's dinosaur country crosses through multiple national parks, monuments or recreation areas, which means you can build your own itinerary for the whole family, or start with our seven-day Dino Trekker journey.
Now, on to the show.
Photographer Mark Osler sent back hundreds of incredible postcards from his trek. Here are just a few of his stops along the way:
Face the Past at the Natural History Museum of Utah
The Past Worlds exhibit spans time from 14,000 years ago to more than 500 million years ago.... see more »
The Natural History Museum of Utah
The Trailhead to Utah begins in the modern exhibit halls of NHMU's 10 distinct exhibitions.... see more »
George S. Eccles Dinosaur Park
En garde! Realistic dinosaur sculptures populate Ogden's eight-acre Dinosaur Park, awakening the imagination.... see more »
Preparator at Work, Ogden Eccles Dinosaur Park
Preparator: a person who prepares scientific specimens or museum displays. With new discoveries, there's plenty of work to do in Utah....
Dinosaur Diamond Scenic Byway
Explore the museums, active dig sites and rock art along the way and remember: objects in mirror are closer than they appear....
Cleveland-Lloyd Dinosaur Quarry
Walk directly from the impressive skeletons on display to the site where the fossils are being carefully extracted....
Prehistoric Museum in Price
Stirring archaeology and boggling paleontology halls combine for one awesome experience in prehistory....
St. George Dinosaur Discovery Site
The most significant dinosaur tracksite in western North America with some of the best Jurassic-era footprints in the world....
Big Water Visitor Center
The paleontology of Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument on display....
Dinosaur National Monument
Dinosaur National Monument is your all-access pass to a bygone era, locked up in stone and yielding its ancient mysteries to modern science.... see more »