A Sacred Site of the Epic of Evolution
The purplish Morrison Formation of the Jurassic, exposed along this roadcut at Dinosaur Ridge,
was named after the nearby town of Morrison. The rock is so dense that these exposed
(dark orange) bones of dinosaurs are in no danger of overnight theft.
In 1877, some of the best-known dinosaurs were first discovered here (just west of Denver). These include Apatosaurus (better known as Brontosaurus), Diplodocus (also a "long-neck" dinosaur), Stegosaurus (which is the Colorado State Fossil), and the predatory Allosaurus. These animals represent life 145 million years ago in the late Jurassic Period. In the 1930s, dinosaur tracks were discovered on the east side of Dinosaur Ridge in the 100-million year-old rocks of the Dakota group, representing the Cretaceous period.
Dinosaur Ridge is thus a sacred site of the epic of evolution not only for the fossils themselves, but also for the pivotal role that this site played in the scientific quest to learn about by-gone times on our magnificent planet.
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