Visitors to Dinosaur National Monument join a ranger for a guided hike of the Fossil Discovery Trail, a 1.2-mile trail on the Utah side of the monument. At 10 a.m. Saturday, visitors can participate in a guided hike as part of an activity leading up to National Park Week.

National Parks Service/Dinosaur National Monument

Visitors to Dinosaur National Monument join a ranger for a guided hike of the Fossil Discovery Trail, a 1.2-mile trail on the Utah side of the monument. At 10 a.m. Saturday, visitors can participate in a guided hike as part of an activity leading up to National Park Week.

Entrance fees waived at Dinosaur for National Park Week

— Dinosaur National Monument is waiving its entrance fees from Monday to April 26 in celebration of National Park Week, which is celebrated annually by national parks across the U.S.

Dinosaur officials also announced Tuesday in a news release that they are kicking off the annual celebration early with a guided hike of the 1.2-mile Fossil Discovery Trail at 10 a.m. Saturday.

“Spring is a great time to visit Dinosaur National Monument,” Superintendent Mary Risser said in the release. “Even with the recent cold temperatures and snow, wildflowers like phlox and paintbrush are beginning to bloom along the Sound of Silence Trail.

“You can enjoy gazing at the wall of dinosaur bones in the Quarry Exhibit Hall before our peak summer visitation arrives.”

The Quarry Visitor Center and the Quarry Exhibit Hall, which features the wall of dinosaur fossils, are open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. The visitor center and the hall are on the Utah side of the monument.

On the Moffat County side, the Harpers Corner Road — a scenic 32-mile, one-way drive that leaves U.S. Highway 40 about 2 miles east of the town of Dinosaur — is open, according to the release. The road provides access to numerous trails, views of the Green and Yampa River canyons and wildlife viewing opportunities.

“Bighorn sheep, mule deer and other animals are bearing young,” Risser said in the release. “Birds are returning to their summer nesting sites.”

The Canyon Visitor Center, at the start of the Harpers Corner Road, is open Saturdays and Sundays.

National Park Week at Dinosaur concludes April 27 with activities in celebration of National Junior Ranger Day. At 9 a.m., Cub Scout Troop 1442 will conduct a flag raising ceremony at the Quarry Visitor Center.

Games and activities geared toward families will follow from 10 a.m. to noon at the Quarry Exhibit Hall.

For more information about National Park Week, visit www.nationalparkweek.org. For more information about Dinosaur National Monument, call 435-781-7700 or visit www.nps.gov/dino.

Joe Moylan can be reached at 970-875-1794 or jmoylan@craigdailypress.com.

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