Prologue: A hiking challenge is going on this year by the Department of State Parks in the state where I live. They are calling it “Sky’s The Limit”. We have to finish a hike in the chosen 20 Park and Forest locations before December 3rd this year Each location has some specific points of interest that the departments asks us to take pictures of and document them.
Most of the Parks and Forests are located in an hours of driving distance, except a few. I decided to take this challenge and hopefully will be able to complete all of them. Here we go!
First one up is the Dinosaur State Park. It opened in 1968, two years after 2000 dinosaur tracks were discovered. Preserving those tracks, the entire area was deemed a state park, and also an educational site. This is the largest dinosaur track site in North America.
Enclosed in the park are several natural trails totaling up to 2 miles, one of which I hiked as part of the challenge. It is a simple hike with only a few elevations that are not hard to climb. The trails are rich with sugar maple, birch, oak and other trees of the local variety. We also get to see open meadows, swamp areas, and of course volcanic rocks such as basaltic rocks. The center also houses the Dinosaur State Park Exhibitors Center; a Casting Area where you can create some dinosaur foot print casts; and a museum shop.
The trails begin with a walk through time, giving a timeline of how earth formed, along with large dinosaur painted foot prints.
Along the trail there are so many interpretive signs talking not only about the flora and fauna, but also about the geology around the trail.
I particularly liked this pillar showing the geological time and the history of life in North America taking us from when earth originated some 4.54 Billion Years ago to Paleozoic Era to Mesozoic Era to Cenozoic Era and to modern Earth.
The trail is a mix of cement road, to a boardwalk, to a rocky road and to a forest trail filled with moss, lichens and other forest floor plants.
A decorated Bat Box sits high up these metal stilts, that form a roosting site for the bats in the area; and encourage them to roost.
Not to forget the trail information buildings and trail signs that we can see at the beginning of the trail, guiding us to the right path; and sometimes hidden gems such as these benches inside notches that allow you to rest and view the flora and fauna in front of you.
A small, easy, pleasant trail with a lot of education that one learns along. Loved exploring the place.