Moccasin Mountain Dinosaur Tracksite

Near Kanab, Utah

Moccasin Mountain Dinosaur Tracksite does not offer reservations through Recreation.gov. Please take a look at the area details below for more information about visiting this location. Enjoy your visit!

Overview

The Moccasin Mountain Dinosaur Tracksite contains one of the highest diversities of fossilized vertebrate tracks in North America. Hundreds of tracks from at least five different dinosaur species have been preserved since the Early Jurassic period approximately 180 million years as the site changed from an oasis in a Sahara-like desert to the colorful Navajo sandstone found today. Footprints from Kayentapus, Grallator, Otozoum, Batrachopus, and Brasilichnium have been revealed by the erosion of layers of the sedimentary sandstone.

To reach the tracks from the lower parking area and interpretive display, hike around the vehicle barricade and continue west down the short drainage. When the drainage reaches a pour off roughly 180 yards (165 meters) from the barricade, hike up the slope to the right (north). Keep a close eye on the ground as you wander this area and wait for the tracks to start to stand out from the surrounding sandstone. Visitors often find that tracks become easier to spot after spending some time in the site; on the return hike, you may be surprised to find that you walked by several tracks without noticing them.

Although these tracks have survived for millions of years, they are fragile and easily damaged. Park at the interpretive signs or at the upper parking area – do not drive on the tracks. As you explore, avoid walking directly on the tracks, especially if the sandstone is wet. Fossils like these are legally protected national treasures; doing anything that might damage them is against federal law. This includes making molds or casts of the footprints or attempting to remove the tracks from the sandstone.

The Moccasin Mountain Dinosaur Tracksite is open to foot traffic only. Bicycles and motorized vehicles are not allowed past the parking areas. Dogs are allowed, but their waste must be packed out. There are two small parking areas: an upper area delineated by a rail fence that allows drivers to avoid dropping into (and getting back out of) the drainage; and a lower parking area in the drainage by the interpretive signs, which is best suited for true off-highway vehicles. Amenities at the site are limited to the parking areas and the interpretive signs. Brochures and a children’s activity handout are available at the Kanab Visitor Center (BLM) in Kanab, UT. The visitor center also has maps and information about visiting the site.

The road to the Moccasin Mountain Dinosaur Tracksite has sections of deep sand. Only experienced drivers with four-wheel drive high clearance vehicles should attempt to drive to the site. Road conditions are especially challenging when the sand is dry.