When visiting significant fossil locations, please remember these fossils belong to everyone. They are not available for collecting unless you have permission from the landowner/land manager. These fossils are rare and cannot be replaced. If you find something or notice questionable activities, please report them to the respective land manager.
Garden Park Fossil Area
Within the BLM’s Garden Park Fossil Area NNL a (National Natural Landmark) is the Marsh and Cleveland Quarries. Marsh Quarry has a .25-mile trail from the parking lot. Hike up to an overlook to see where Allosaurus, Ceratosaurus, Diplodocus, and Stegosaurus were first found in the late 1800s by local fossil hero Marshall Felch. Cleveland Quarry area includes shaded picnic tables and a vault toilet located along Fourmile Creek. Here in the 1950s, the Cleveland Museum of Natural History excavated “Happy the Haplocanthosaur”, which is still on display there today. Fascinating fact: No one has ever found a Haplocanthosaur skull!
Right along the crest of City of Cañon City’s famous and fun Skyline Drive lies a clear trackway of Ankylosaur footprint casts within the Dakota Hogback formation. Visible from the road, imagine traveling along the coastline of the ancient Western Interior Seaway 90 million years ago with this dinosaur! (See pages 16-17 for more information.)
Hogbacks Open Space
A new interpretive trail with kiosks – The Bridge Creek Trail – is located near the Hogbacks’ Floral Trailhead, educating visitors on the Cenomanian-Turonian geologic boundary. Pueblo Community College, Crossroads Through Time Heritage Park: A 2,300-foot-long Geology Time Trail that introduces and explains both local and global geology and paleontology events.
The Royal Gorge Regional Museum & History Center
The history center has great geological and paleontological displays. A new exhibit highlights the scientists who’ve worked on the fossils in our area.
Indian Springs Trace Fossil NNL:
($10 per person) This NNL is the best Ordovician trace fossil site in North America. See Fremont County’s oldest fossils – from about 450 million years ago! Located seven miles northeast of Cañon City on Phantom Canyon Road (CO 67N). Contact: Carly Thorson at the Indian Springs Campground (719-429-2206) for a tour of this protected fossil site.
Royal Gorge Dinosaur Experience
Check out world-class interactive displays, real dinosaur fossils, dino fossil casts, animatronic dinosaurs, and more. Guided tours are available in the exhibit hall, and the ropes courses are fun too!