Currently in its 12th year, the Subaru/Leave No Trace Traveling Trainers, 2 teams of professional outdoor educators, have reached over 10 million people in 48 states with Leave No Trace education and training.

Thursday, August 21, 2008


After leaving Salt Lake City and the craziness of Outdoor Retailer Summer Market we headed back to Boulder via I-40 and Dinosaur National Monument. This was a spur of the moment decision and when we arrived we were initially disappointed to see that the Quarry Visitor Center, which houses the famous cliff face of dinosaur bones, had been closed due to to significant structural hazards. If we had only visited the parks website we would have known this vital piece of information; we should have brushed up on the first Leave No Trace principle, Plan Ahead and Prepare. On the flip side, had we properly researched the area, we may have postponed our trip and missed out on the opportunity to have the monument basically to ourselves.

We did see a few fossils, although it required a little more work than driving to the visitor center, walking into the exhibit and having a well informed interpreter explain exactly what we were seeing. The fossils we saw blended into a large cliff face about half a mile away from the more impressive display that is the Quarry Visitor Center. We later drove further into the monument to check out some of the amazing petroglyphs in the area. Again, minus a few folks driving through, we had the place to ourselves. So the moral to this story in twofold. First, Plan Ahead and Prepare by checking out guidebooks, websites, and/or speaking with local land managers. Second, if you find out that the main attraction is closed, consider going anyway, it may end up being a unique opportunity for solitude and exploration during the busy summer season.

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