Date: March 28, 2020
As the coronavirus pandemic continues to spread, many people are finding themselves in quarantine in order to most effectively practice “social distancing.” Are you going stir crazy?” Social distancing doesn’t mean that you have to stay inside. There are plenty of things that you can do outside that are still within the appropriate social distancing. Plus being outdoors is good for you! So here are a few ideas to help motivate you to go outside.
Go For A Hike
There is ample hiking trails in Dinosaurland, in Vernal, Utah. There are trails for everyone and all skill level. Some of our top hikes include:
Moonshine Arch –
Moonshine Arch is a local favorite. This massive arch is about 85 feet in length and about 40 feet above the ground. The arch is neatly tucked away in the cliffs just north of Steinaker State Park. You can access the arch by jeep, ATV, or hiking the 3 miles round trip. Visitors are able to walk underneath the arch and even on top!
McConkie Ranch Petroglyph Trail –
This is a great hike that leads to some of the world renown Native American petroglyphs, found all along 200-foot-high “Navajo Formation” sandstone cliffs. The petroglyphs are on private land. Contributions are accepted; all that is asked is for visitors to obey all signs and not damage the sites. Please do not touch any of the petroglyphs. The oils from your hands will damage them. There are trails that take you up close and personal to view figures up to 9 feet tall. These figures represent the Fremont culture, which flourished in this area from about 1-1200 A.D. This hike is family friendly and is about a mile long. Visitors will be able to enjoy the breathtaking views and petroglyphs.
Dry Fork Flume Trail –
This trail closely follows the route of an old wagon road that was used to access the Dry Fork Flume and the Flume Mill Site near Corral Park. The construction of the flume began in the spring of 1896 as a way to divert water from Dry Fork Creek around the many sinks located there, with the purpose of supplying irrigation water to the valley below. The experiment failed, but left excellent opportunities for hiking, biking, horsebacking riding, and historical interpretation. There are three trail heads along the 9.5 mile trail. Visitors can modify the length they want to hike depending on what trail head they start at.
Dinosaur Trackway Trail –
Want to see where dinosaurs roamed? Then this trail is for you! This moderate difficulty trail of 3 miles round trip leads to the water’s edge of the backside of Red Fleet State Park. There visitors will be rewarded with seeing several three-toed, 10 to 12 inches wide dilophosaurus tracks. The best viewing of the dinosaur tracks is in the early morning or late afternoon. The sun makes them difficult to see mid-day. Brown markers and black dinosaur tracks painted on the rocks mark the trail.
Jones Hole Trail –
A pleasant hike along a babbling brook in the bottom of a lovely canyon. Basically level walking with a few ups and downs. Quite a bit of shade. Trail terminates at the Green River. Approximately 1.5 miles down the trail from the fish hatchery are several panels of Fremont petroglyphs and pictographs. After two miles, the Island Park trail intersects with the Jones Hole Trail at Ely Creek. A short walk up Island Park trail takes you to a small waterfall. Good trout fishing is available in Jones Hole Creek. A Utah Fishing license is required. Designated backcountry camping sites available near confluence of Ely Creek and Jones Hole Creek.
Go For A Bike Ride
Explore Dinosaurland while riding on some of the best trails around! Vernal, Utah has miles and miles of biking trails that riders of all skill levels love to ride on. Here are three trail complex systems that have multiple trails within it:
McCoy Flat Trails
Half Way Hallow Trails
Red Fleet Trail Complex
For a list of more trails go to Visitdinosaurland.com
Have you ever tried geocaching before? Geocaching is a modern-day treasure hunt. Caches are hidden all over the world by fellow geocachers who put together little trinkets for people to find. Geographical coordinates are given to the caches that are hidden and you must find. It is a great family friendly way to exercise both your mind and body. Once you find the cache you may take an item out of the container but must replace it with a trinket of your own.
To get started visit popular sites like www.geocaching.com or download a geocaching app on you phone. You will need a GPS or your cell phone to read the geographical coordinates. Also be prepared with other essential things like a first aid kit, water, flash light, trinket to leave in the cache container.
Other Fun Ideas:
Go For A Drive! The scenery in Uintah County is beautiful and changes dramatically in a short amount of time. The Flaming-Gorge Uintas National Scenic Byway is beautiful anytime of the year. There are several pull areas that you can stop and enjoy the view further. And wildlife like deer, elk, moose, big horn sheep, and turkeys are seen frequently in the area.
Go on a Nature Scavenger Hunt! Write or draw a list of items on a piece of paper you want to find. Now the fun part — go find them! This scavenger hunt can be as close as your own backyard! Example of things to find: flowers, pine cone, dog, an ant, something blue, etc.
Remember that you have options to get out of your house and still maintain the appropriate social distancing. There is no reason to go stir crazy! Hiking, biking, and geocaching is just the start of the fun that Dinsoaurland has to offer.
Stay healthy friends!