Tucked away in Southeastern Colorado lies one of the largest preserved dinosaur trackways in the world. At the bottom of the 400-foot deep Picketwire Canyon, there’s a stretch of more than 1,300 visible tracks known as the Purgatoire River track site, a common route for traveling dinosaurs years ago.
This track system is part of the Morrison Formation, a large piece of sedimentary rock from the late Jurassic period that’s said to be the best place to find dinosaur fossils in North America.
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Experts have determined that the footsteps found in Picketwire Canyon were left by the famously massive Brontosaurus, as well as the Allosaurus, a carnivore similar to the Tyrannosaurus Rex, but smaller.
If you want to see these tracks for yourself, the canyon is accessible via a 10.6-mile roundtrip trail headed towards the Dolores Mission, a small Catholic church from the 19th century that’s now in ruins. This trail is open to hiking, biking, and horseback riding.
Picketwire Canyon is part of the larger Comanche National Grassland, a grassland that spans more than 400,000 acres. If you’re searching in the right place, you can find petroglyphs on rocks around this grassland created by ancient inhabitants up to 8,000 years ago.
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