Monday, May 22, 2017

Dinosaur National Monument (5/19 & 5/20/2017)

I hope I didn't offend anyone with the photo of the pronghorn caught in a personal activity.  I didn't notice what was happening until a more observant reader pointed it out to me.  It is, after all, a nature photo.

Weather improved a little for a couple days, still cloudy at times but no rain.  I drove into the main entrance of the monument, but chose not to visit the quarry/fossil exhibit, saving it for a rainy day, if one should come along. Instead, I drove to the end of the scenic road, along the way stopping at the several petroglyph sites within a ten-mile span.

While these panels contain some of the standard images found all over the West, there are some unique features here.  For example, I've never seen drawings of lizards, and the brochure indicates they are quite rare.  I found six lizard images on this one wall.  See if you can find them.
 The road runs alongside the Green River, including where it actually  split a mountain into two parts rather than go around it.  You'll see the park's campground in a pretty riverside location, some lush  ranch land and the variety of mountains and rock formations found here.

Petroglyph on the high rock

Split Mountain
The next day, I drove to another section of the monument, much farther from Jensen than the main section.  The road I took leads to Rainbow Park and Island Park, two beautiful areas used by rafters for put-ins and take-outs.  Here are even more varied rock formations and more petroglyphs.  Some of the humanoid figures are about five feet tall, larger than most sites.  Also, the shields being held are quite un usual.

 Most of the art is fairly high and requires a short, steep climb to access.  I felt it was well worth the effort.  Rainbow Park is well named, given the variety of colors in the formations found there.

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