Explore the most popular hiking trails in Dinosaur National Monument with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

One of my favorite trails to hike! Adequate shade, can be hiked at any time of day. Well marked trail, tons of wildlife and the trail is pretty remote so there’s never a ton of traffic. The trail leads to Ely Falls, a great place to cool off before starting back. I highly recommend this trail for all ages!

Nice easy hike, downhill mostly from the exhibit hall back to the visitor center. Can touch a real dinosaur fossil. Interesting geology and neat scenary. Petroglyph wall too!

Trail begins on the north edge of the drop off zone for the Quarry Building. It runs about 2 miles back to the visitors center. You can ride the tram up to the quarry and take the trail back down to the visitors center. It's an easy hike, some stairs but that's about it. Marked fossils and deposits along the trail and some petroglyphs. As a family, we really enjoyed the trail. I'll post some pictures so everyone can see what this trail is like. Hopefully, it will help you make decisions about your trip to Dinosaur NM. Enjoy!

Easy peasy and worthwhile

hiking
1 month ago

Easy hike along the Green River, beautiful views!

Short easy walk and super interesting, with lots of petroglyphs to discover!

Pretty good trail, fun for your family, nice beach at the end!

hiking
1 month ago

If you are in the Vernal area and don't do this hike, you are missing out big time. Very well marked and maintained trail, with an interpretive guide available. The trailhead is clearly marked down the road from the Dinosaur National Monument visitor center. You can do a double loop with the Desert Voices trail using the 0.35 mile connector trail, which is clearly marked. If you do that, it will be 5.5 miles total. The scenery is wonderful. At interpretive marker 14 there is an option to climb up the rock if you are feeling adventurous. It is steep, but if you are wearing any kind of halfway decent shoes (no roller skates), you can make it. The one warning is that there is no shade, so I wouldn't do it midday in the summer.

hiking
2 months ago

Our family loved this hike! We walked to the waterfall then to the river and back for a total of nearly 9 miles with a 9 and 12 year old who hike occasionally. Not a difficult trail and saw lots of wildlife! A herd of Rocky Mountain Big Horn Sheep, some deer, lizards, etc.
The views were amazing!
The petroglyphs were very near the main trail and easy to find.
The trail is nicely shaded most of the time.
Easiest way to get there is 500 North in Vernal - just follow the road east. Simple!

hiking
3 months ago

Absolutely wonderful trail! If you do it clockwise it starts out walking down a dried up river channel and moves into more difficult terrain once you start going up the dirt canyons! If you're with a family you could do this first half but I would turn around here as the next few kilometers are challenging and not good for kids or inexperienced hikers. You do quite a bit of bouldering and the the trail gets really steep in some places! All the unique terrain in 3.5 miles makes this hike awesome! It would be very hot in warmer months, definitely bring water, sunscreen, and maybe a hat! Parking lot is pretty small and there aren't any trailhead facilities but there are some at the centers! It does cost $20 to get into the park however but it's worth it because there's so much more to explore!

hiking
3 months ago

I wouldn't really call this a hike just a walk up. Great petroglyph

Spectacular. Lots and lots of petroglyphs. And a view out into the valley that is also fantastic. And to top off our visit, a family of 6 or 7 turkeys. Do not miss this 10-30 minute excursion.

hiking
5 months ago

beautiful hike theough so many different mini ecosystems. went from red clay to bouldering to sand. great opportunities to climb megaliths for spectacular views. very clean trail.

hiking
6 months ago

Stopped at the Visitor Center and hiked this enroute From Salt Lake to home.

hiking
9 months ago

Easy out and back day hike from the fish hatchery to the waterfall. Water is plentiful for filtering, but very cold for swimming. There really aren't swimming holes along the trail, but easy to dunk your body in the heat of the summer. We have seen bighorn sheep along the trail. Ride to the trail up Diamond Mountain is fantastic. Facilities at the trailhead including picnic tables and some sparse shade. Great place for a fly rod if you can make short casts.

Hiked this in early October 2017. I met one other couple during the entire hike! The hour drive from Vernal to the fish Hatchery trail head is a beautiful trip in itself.

There is one older composting toilet about 1.5 miles into the trail along with a couple of picnic tables. Otherwise I did not see any other facilities along the way. Use the public restroom to the northwest of the visitor parking lot before heading out.

Trail is consistently dirt until the sandy beach at the edge of the Green river. Well marked in all of the right places with mostly flat terrain. Came across some mule deer and several different birds, but did not see big horn sheep.

Beautiful hike. Lots of shaded areas. Be sure to bring a camera. Some of the large rocks on the hike even have fossils visible on the top.

We started this hike around 6 am. This was a beautiful hike...especially early in the morning. Loved all the red rock and the diversity in the trail as we hiked. Saw evidence of big horns, but no actual animals. There was minimal shade. I cant imagine doing this during the heat of the day. Highly recommend!

hiking
11 months ago

My husband and I did this trail toward the end of the day, and we saw like 2 more people. It was stunning. Great views, and the informational plaques were actually pretty cool and inspiring. It seems longer than 3 miles depending on when you do it.

Short walk. Well preserved petroglyphs.

trail running
Thursday, July 13, 2017

Ran this midday and it was pretty hot, but generally runable. Lots of terrain change from the river, to the dirt mounds to the up and downs of the bag before the big boulders at the end where you get the best views. Climbing fown the rock side was unique.

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Loved the hike so beautiful...

on Sound of Silence Trail

hiking
Sunday, May 28, 2017

Close to 3.5 miles in total. Pretty easy. Can be hot. Bring water. Fine views and landscape changes. We saw a snake.

But If you have been to Bryce, Zion, Canyonlands or Arches, you might not rate this trail very high.

walking
Saturday, April 22, 2017

Interesting petroglyphs close to the road, also gives nice elevated views of the area. Located on the way to Josie Bassett Morris homestead area, Box Canyon, and Hog Canyon Trails.

hiking
Wednesday, August 17, 2016

This was a great hike, although the location is pretty remote. Dirt road leading to location has several miles of heavy switchbacks at a 10% grade, but it is passable with a passenger car. On a Friday hike, we saw very few people north of Ely, but two large groups south of the falls. Fishermen came later in the day, but overall the trail was not crowded but there was some traffic.

We started at the fish hatchery, and our hike included the side trail to the petroglyphs and two visits to Ely Falls (aka Butt Dam Falls). The majority of the hike is shady, although south of Ely you will hit some wide open spots.

Jones Hole stream is from a spring, and is crystal clear. The stream is very scenic, and the cliffs rising on each side provide some good photo opportunities. We saw a variety of birds, small mammals, and a couple small snakes, but no sheep or bears.

The path to the petroglyphs is well-marked. The side trail goes along the cliff face only a few hundred feet from the main trail. There are several squiggles that a river guide passing by told his group were symbolic of fish nets, but there are some other more interesting glyphs as well. The glyph trail merges back into the main trail just north of the path to Ely Falls.

The sign to Ely Falls trail says it's half a mile, but I would guess that is for the round trip. It is a very short trail that brings you right underneath the falls. There are two tables just south of the trailhead for picnicers, or plenty of room at the top of the falls for a snack. The trail goes beyond the falls as well, but we turned back after a short walk down it so I'm not sure how far it goes.

Thursday, July 07, 2016

Not really a trail, but more following a canyon and a creek bed. Very challenging and you really need a good GPS to not get turned around. Very pretty, though.

hiking
Thursday, July 07, 2016

for those fishing it is a stream no large fish but lots of little and fun. The trail is easy with lots to see. my kids love to hike it. lots of mosquitoes and few harmless snakes.

hiking
Wednesday, June 01, 2016

I combined this with Desert Voices. Sound of Silence had a lot of wildflowers that were extravagant, plus a lot of rabbits and lizards. This trail has lots of ups and downs and there is one place that I almost had to scramble. Beautiful place.

backpacking
Wednesday, May 04, 2016

Excellent, easy backpacking trip that's beautiful in spring. The fishing looks great as well (I didn't get a chance to fish because I forgot my pole). Lots of wildlife and great side trails. I wrote a report here:

https://backpackingnerd.com/2016/05/02/jones-hole/

hiking
Sunday, April 03, 2016

Very pleasant hike. At the mid point, the trail appears to stay straight but the markers guide to the right. Go right to stay on course and follow the cairns over the rocks. Truly beautiful.

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