A Guide to Visiting Dinosaur Valley, Texas
May 9, 2020
Explore a landscape in which dinosaurs once roamed just a short drive from the DFW area! At Dinosaur Valley State Park, you can walk along rocky ledges, swim in the scenic Paluxy river and see one of the biggest preserved sites of dinosaur tracks in the world. Only an hour and a half drive from Dallas, this park makes for a great day trip from DFW.
Please make it a priority to Leave No Trace when exploring the outdoors. This includes leaving nothing behind, respecting wildlife, minimizing campfire impacts, respecting those around you, planning ahead and traveling on durable surfaces. For more details, read about the seven principles at lnt.org.
- Check out the dinosaur tracks at one of the park's four preservation sites. Site two is most convenient, right after you cross the river on the west side of the park.
- Hike the Buckeye Trail and enjoy a serene trail with few people. You’ll find secluded, tiny waterfalls on the Buckeye Creek.
- Hike the Overlook Trail and get fantastic views of the Paluxy River and surrounding area.
- Try not to get wet as you cross the river - you’ll need to cross it to get to most of the hikes. There are large rocks to hop between but it largely depends on the water level to determine how difficult it might be.
- Stroll among wildflowers (in the springtime) and monarch butterflies on the Monarch Trail
- Swim in the Paluxy River, don’t forget your bathing suit!
The town of Glen Rose has a population of under 3000 and is known as the “Dinosaur Capital of Texas” because of the state park. If you have time after visiting Dinosaur Valley, there are a lot of great things to check out.
- Glen Rose Historic Square - The Somerville County courthouse sits in the middle of the historic square and is surrounded by a variety of shops and restaurants to explore.
- Big Rocks Park - This park is another great place to swim in the Paluxy River and is free for everyone to enjoy.
- Somervell County Museum - This history museum sits right on the town square and includes a moonshine still and dinosaur tracks. Interestingly, Glen Rose was a center of moonshining during Prohibition.
- Paluxy Heritage Park - The Heritage Park has a riverwalk and a few historic buildings. The riverwalk runs along the Paluxy River leading to the Big Rocks Park nearby.
- Barnard’s Mill Art Museum - This art museum is housed in a historic building that used to be a hospital and has mostly western themed art.
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