Escalante Petrified Forest State Park, Escalante

3.3
#4 of 12 in Nature in Escalante
State Park · Nature / Park
Escalante Petrified Forest State Park (also known as Escalante State Park) is a state park of Utah, USA, located a half-mile (0.8 km) north of the town of Escalante. A visitor center was built in 1991, and features displays of plant and marine fossils, petrified wood and fossilized dinosaur bones over 150 million years old (Upper Jurassic Period). The Petrified Forest Trail is a one-mile (1.6 km) loop, winding up the side of a mesa to the top where most of the fossil wood occurs. Logs two feet or more in diameter are seen at several places along the trail where it is eroding from the conglomerate capping the mesa. This conglomerate lies near the top of the Brushy Basin Member of the Morrison Formation. The wood is multicolored (mostly red, yellow, white, and black) and was prized by hobbyists before the Park was established. The logs are believed to be of conifers that were transported by a river before being buried and later fossilized as agate. A 50 foot (15m) log is displayed near the trail head and is one of the most complete fossil logs known from the Morrison Formation.

The Sleeping Rainbows trail is an optional .75-mile (1.21 km) loop off the Petrified Forest Trail. This section is much steeper and requires scrambling and climbing over rocks.
In 1954 Wide Hollow Reservoir was constructed to provide irrigation for the town of Escalante. The reservoir is stocked with rainbow trout and bluegill, and is popular for water sports including swimming, boating and fishing.

By using our Escalante day trip planner, you can arrange your visit to Escalante Petrified Forest State Park and other attractions in Escalante.
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Escalante Petrified Forest State Park reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.0
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  • Smaller, so you don't expire under the sun, trees to shade somewhat and far more interesting landscape as you walk the furthest loop to see the main gathering of petrified trees. Arizona is spread...  more »
  • We did this hike in the afternoon, and it was HOT! Not much shade. Beginning is fairly steep. But we did see a lot of petrified wood. The campground is pleasant with free, clean showers. It's nice to....  more »

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