Activity note: Check-in at the Plaza Hotel, Meet in the Conference Room at 5:45 to receive name badges, etc. and have dinner, then afterwards, introduction and orientation.
Afternoon: Independent Arrival, Check-In, 5:45 Registration and Pick Up Road Scholar Name Badges in Hotel Conference Room.
Dinner: Enjoy dinner at Hotel.
Evening: Welcome, Orientation, Group Introduction and Overview of the week's activities and events in Hotel Conference Room.
Activity note: Wear layers because weather can change without notice. For walking wear Comfortable Shoes, Water Bottle, Sunscreen, Sun Glasses, Hat, etc. Photo stop at Utah Olympic Park. Travel to Vernal, explore the Field House of Natural History Museum, check into hotel, enjoy a group dinner at local favorite and then free evening to rest up from long day of travel and activity.
Breakfast: Enjoy breakfast.
Morning: Leave Salt Lake City and travel to Park City to see the world-famous Utah Olympic Park for a photo stop. Olympic Athletes may even be training! Afterwards, travel to Vernal. Remember: While traveling through the beautiful mountain country, gaze out the window and take in this beautiful scenery and reminisce about your program experiences thus far and get excited about what is to come!
Lunch: Enjoy lunch at a Local Restaurant en-route.
Afternoon: Arrive in Vernal and then discover, experience and explore the prehistoric World Famous Museum, Utah Field House of Natural History Museum and learn the process palaeontologists go through from finding dinosaur bones, preparing to bring to museum and preparations for display and joining with proper other species. Then explore the dinosaur garden. Within an 80-mile radius of Vernal, evidence of the entire Earth's history is visible. Utah Field House reveals this geological story with hands-on exhibits and activities. The park is a showcase of eastern Utah's geological past and natural history. A wealth of geological, palaeontology, archaeological and biological specimens are displayed, reviewing the natural history of the Uinta Mountains and Basin. Exhibits include nearly three billion years of earth history as it is exposed in the nearby Uinta Mountains and Uinta Basin. In the geology hall, fossils are displayed from rocks covering more than 600 million years of life, ranging from algae to dinosaurs to highly advanced mammals. Artistic representations of these life forms are displayed throughout the museum. The anthropology hall includes examples of ancient and recent Native American life in the area. Highlighted are the works of the Fremont Indians, a group that lived in this area from approximately 700 to 1250 AD. Reproductions of local rock art are displayed throughout the room. In addition there is a section that emphasizes Ute handicrafts and cultural items. In the natural history hall, examples of local animal life are arranged along a mural depicting life as one descends from the high Uinta Mountains into the Uinta Basin. Outside the museum is the Dinosaur Garden, 17 full-size replicas of prehistoric animals ranging in age from the Pennsylvanian through the Pleistocene. Park Elevation: 5,300 feet. Opened to the public as a state park in 1959, it has recently undergone major renovations and moved to a new, more accessible location. Then check into hotel
Dinner: Enjoy dinner at a Local Restaurant.
Evening: Free evening to relax after a long and adventurous day. Explore Main Street and other local attractions on your own within walking distance from hotel.
Activity note: Wear layers because weather can change without notice. Closed shoes prefer especially for walking and comfort. Water Bottle, Sunscreen, Sun Glasses, Hat, etc. Walk through the Dinosaur National Monument Visitor Center, the Dinosaur Quarry enjoy the 1-mile "Fossil Discovery Trail" and see your Grandchildren become a Junior Ranger!
Breakfast: Enjoy breakfast.
Morning: Travel to Dinosaur National Monument & Quarry. After arrival, take a Fossil Discovery Trail with a Ranger outside the Dinosaur Quarry and walk through millions of years of history, geological formations and ancient ecosystems. Then explore, experience and enjoy the World Famous Dinosaur Quarry. In 1909, paleontologist Earl Douglass was searching for fossils for the Carnegie Museum when he discovered a formation layered with prehistoric plant and amazing dinosaur fossils. A quarry was established there and it proved to be one of the world's best window into late-Jurassic-period dinosaurs. Dinosaur National Monument was created in 1915 to protect 80 acres in the quarry area. Today the monument includes 210,844 acres. Many fossils are embedded in a sloping rock formation that was once a sandbar on the edge of a large river. As the river carried masses of dinosaur carcasses downstream, many became stuck on the sandbar, which eventually turned to fossils. As a result, fossils from hundreds of Jurassic creatures are concentrated in a small area. Many fossilized bones have been partially exposed but left intact in the rock where they can be easily seen known as "Wall of Bones." A building was constructed over the area, which is now known as "The Quarry" at the monument. The unique rock formations in this area provide a geologic record of earth history covering billions of years. Part of the mission of the monument is to work to understand that history... how rocks formed over time and were shaped by rivers and other environmental factors... how plant and animal life developed and changed over time. The monument's rocks, fossils and rivers tell an important story, and provide great opportunity for recreation.
Lunch: Enjoy lunch at Dinosaur National Monument Visitor Center.
Afternoon: Visit the Visitor Center. Go up to the Quarry. Grandchildren can go inside the Quarry Exhibit Hall and have hands on experience of becoming a Junior Ranger while grandparents continue to explore the quarry or relax. Depart for Cub Creek, and discover Petroglyths along the way to Josie Bassett Cabin. Petroglyph panels in the Cub Creek area feature a variety of amazing Fremont Indian rock art. Then explore and learn about Josephine (Josie) Bassett Morris, born in 1874 and died in 1964 at the age of 90 after being kicked by her horse and broke her hip. In her early years, Josie and her sister "Queen" Ann Bassett were extremely good looking young women and they had a wild side. Josie's older sister, Ann, at age 24, became romantically involved with Butch Cassidy, meanwhile at age 19, Josie became romantically involved with Butch Cassidy's closest friend. Elzy Lay. The following year, Cassidy was sent to prison for eighteen months so Ann became romantically involved with Ben Kilpatrick. When Cassidy was released from prison, Josie became involved with Cassidy for a time until Cassidy again became involved with Ann. It was a complicated circle of relationships that developed between the Bassett girls and Cassidy's Wild Bunch gang. Despite the seemingly constant changes in romantic companions by both the Bassett girls and the gang members, there is no indication that any animosity ever resulted from it. By the time Josie was 30 years old, most of the wild bunch gang members closest to the Bassett girls had either been killed or captured. So Josie settled a ranch in Cub Creek and lived there for the next 50 years. She was married five different times throughout her life. Self-reliant and industrious, Josie built a cabin and raised livestock, field crops, vegetables, and fruits on her 1 mile by ½ mile homestead. She was the last remaining associate of the Wild Bunch gang, and the last direct source of information about its members, their personalities, traits and demeanor.
Dinner: Enjoy a picnic dinner at Josie Bassett Morris' Cabin.
Evening: Enjoy an evening of relaxation and Imagination under the beautiful skies. Imagine being a Cowboy, a Settler or an Outlaw and living out West in a Majestic Box Canyon. Return to Hotel.
Activity note: Wear layers because weather can change without notice. Water Bottle, Sunscreen, Sun Glasses, Hat, etc. Good hiking or comfortable shoes for short exploration hikes. Stop at McConkie Ranch o see the World Famous Petroglyphs. Then stop at the top for an amazing overlook down into the thousand deep Flaming Gorge and see the impressive overlook high on the rim at Red Canyon. Explore and learn about the Flaming Gorge Dam.
Breakfast: Enjoy breakfast.
Morning: Announcements before departure. "Drive Through The Ages" with geology discussions and on the way, stop to explore McConkie's Ranch and see up close world-famous Petroglyphs. The images are located on private property, the McConkie Ranch, but are open for public viewing. A self-guided trail runs along the edge of the cliffs right next to the rock art. Markers and signs are placed to help people locate the images. Most of the images are attributed to the ancient Fremont people and date back 1,000 years or more. Some of the figures very intricate and are considered classic examples of rock art from this period. They have great archaeological significance. Most of the figures are petroglyphs (meaning they were chipped into the rock). Others are pictographs (painted onto the rock). Images can be seen from the parking area but they are far more impressive as we walk along the trail and view them up close. The trails are steep in some places and have loose rock. Most people have no problem following the trails if they take it slow and watch where they put their feet. Then travel up the road through beautiful Red Canyon and stop at the top for an amazing overlook down into the thousand deep Flaming Gorge. The impressive overlook high on the rim at Red Canyon offers panoramic views of the dark blue waters of Flaming Gorge Reservoir. A visitor center has been built at the overlook. The center sits on the very edge of the cliff and affords amazing views of the canyon. On the Wyoming site, Flaming Gorge Reservoir is wide and sprawling, extending out against sagebrush flats. On the Utah side, the water backs up into deep, steep-walled canyons. One is called Red Canyon, because of the natural hue of the rocks.
Lunch: Enjoy lunch (with a view) at Flaming Gorge.
Afternoon: Depart for Flaming Gorge Dam. Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area was established by Congress on October 1, 1968. The area contains 207,363 acres of land and water, almost equally divided between Utah and Wyoming. After arrival, view Movie: "Flaming Gorge, Construction of The Dam," and then afterwards, explore Flaming Gorge Dam with a Ranger as you descend hundreds of feet in an elevator inside the dam. This impressive dam rises 502 feet above bedrock, Flaming Gorge Dam impounds waters of the Green River to form the reservoir, which extends as far as 91 miles to the north. The reservoir has a total capacity of 3,788,900 acre-feet. At full elevation of 6,045 feet, it has a surface area of 42,020 acres. Flaming Gorge is famous for its trophy lake trout. It is a huge reservoir providing outstanding opportunity for boating, fishing, skiing, jet skiing, house-boating and other water sports. Return to Hotel.
Dinner: Enjoy dinner at a Local Restaurant.
Evening: Grandchildren and Group Leader Pool Party while Grandparents can begin packing overnight bag for Donosaurzzz Sleep over in the Museum of Ancient Life.
Activity note: Wear layers. Travel to the Museum of Ancient Life and Explore the Dinosaur Museum, wear comfortable shoes for walking. Bedding will be provided for sleeping over night in the World-Famous Museum of Ancient Life. Wear clothes that will dry quick. Water Bottle, Sunscreen, Sun Glasses, Hat, etc.
Breakfast: Enjoy breakfast.
Morning: Board Van with luggage. Announcements before departure. Depart for the Museum Of Ancient Life in Lehi, UT. Museum of Ancient Life, which has the distinction of having the world's largest display of mounted dinosaurs. Not only will you meet the fierce prehistoric friends at the museum, you will also become a part of their world. While weaving through the museum exploring the amazing exhibits with our expert guide and palaeontologist, you will hear chirps of insects and growls of ancient creatures which greet you throughout the museum. Exhibits like the Erosion Table and the Fossil Dig give you an opportunity be a part of the science of palaeontology. Needless to say, this is not an ordinary museum! You will be guided through the museum by the museum curator who designed it all. MUSEUM FACTS: Opened to the public in June of 2000. The defining characteristic of the Museum of Ancient Life is found in its hands-on approach to exhibits. Guests are invited to touch actual fossils and feel real dinosaur bones and eggs, as well as other displays. Exhibit halls are designed to immerse guests in the subject matter, using expansive murals, soundtracks, plants and gurgling streams. There are 50 interactive, hands-on displays within the exhibit halls. With 60 complete skeletal displays, the Museum of Ancient Life is the world's largest dinosaur exhibit. The Museum of Ancient Life is home to the most extensive display of original fossils in the world! With a working palaeontology lab operated by Western Palaeontology you will get to watch them in action right in the museum.
Lunch: Enjoy lunch while traveling to the Museum of Ancient Life.
Afternoon: Experience lots of fun and learning as you see some wonderful educational films in 3-D on the Giant IMAX Screen. Then explore the Museum of Ancient Life, which has the distinction of having the world's largest display of mounted dinosaurs. Not only will you meet the fierce prehistoric friends at the museum, you will also become a part of their world. While weaving through the museum exploring the amazing exhibits with our expert guide and palaeontologist, you will hear chirps of insects and growls of ancient creatures which greet you throughout the museum. Exhibits like the Erosion Table and the Fossil Dig give you an opportunity be a part of the science of palaeontology. Needless to say, this is not an ordinary museum! You will be guided through the museum by the museum curator who designed it all. MUSEUM FACTS: Opened to the public in June of 2000. The defining characteristic of the Museum of Ancient Life is found in its hands-on approach to exhibits. Guests are invited to touch actual fossils and feel real dinosaur bones and eggs, as well as other displays. Exhibit halls are designed to immerse guests in the subject matter, using expansive murals, soundtracks, plants and gurgling streams. There are 50 interactive, hands-on displays within the exhibit halls. With 60 complete skeletal displays, the Museum of Ancient Life is the world's largest dinosaur exhibit. The Museum of Ancient Life is home to the most extensive display of original fossils in the world! With a working palaeontology lab operated by Western Palaeontology you will get to watch them in action right in the museum!
Dinner: Enjoy dinner at a Local Restaurant.
Evening: This evening, you will participate in fun activities after the Museum closes to the public with the Museum Staff. Go to the Van and bring your suitcases (and any other personal items which you may need), into the Museum and then pick your favorite Dinosaur and set up your air mattress and bedding. Then enjoy watching the movie “Night at the Museum” projected from under one of the Dinosaurs onto the wall and then bed down for the night on the comfortable air mattresses, mattress pads, sheets, quilts and pillows. There are electrical outlets throughout the Dinosaur Museum for those who need to plug in their electronic devices to charge, or CPAPS, etc. The museum is large enough for each Grandparent/Grandchild to choose their own spot under any of the dinosaurs and the group can be spread throughout the museum enough to provide relative privacy. Please note, there is no hotel accommodations for this night as it is assumed that all participants participate this program finale night in an unforgettable experience spending the night in the Museum of Ancient Life. This museum is known for the largest display of dinosaurs in the world. If for some reason a participant cannot spend the night in the museum due to major medical issues, then a hotel nearby within walking distance can be booked and paid for individually. Call the program staff for more details about this option. But please make all assumptions you will participate in this program finale night with your grandchild in an unforgettable experience. After all, this may not be the only night in your lifetime you will not get a perfect night’s sleep but upon returning home, any lost sleep can be made up. Most past participants discovered that between the comfortable 10 inch thick air mattresses and bedding, it actually provided a for a pretty good night's rest.
Activity note: After breakfast and packing up bedding in the morning, enjoy activities, and receive certificates of completion, Road Scholar Passport Stickers, etc. at the Museum of Ancient Life. Have lunch at a local restaurant. Drop off those flying out Saturday afternoon at the Salt Lake Airport. and then drop off those staying an extra night at the Salt Lake Plaza Hotel. Do not make Independent Departure until after 3:00 PM on Saturday or it will impact the final day experience for the rest of the group.
Breakfast: After packing up bedding and helping to take bedding storage bins out to the van, enjoy a hearty breakfast in the café at the Museum of Ancient Life.
Morning: Following breakfast, and loading bedding storage bins into the van, time will then be allowed to brush teeth, shave, wash face, apply deodorant, makeup, change clothes, etc. After these logistics are taken care of, Grandparents and Grandchildren join the museum staff for additional morning activities such as learning how to make a plaster cast of fossilized bones which Grandparents and Grandchildren get to take home with them. Plus participate in other learning and exploring activities. Time is then allowed to repack suitcases and take them out to the van. Then participate in the program finale debriefing in the Conference Room as you end your amazing Dinosaur week, Share what you learned and favorite memories of the week. Receive Certificate of Completions, Road Scholar Passport Stickers, etc. Then travel to Salt Lake City for lunch.
Lunch: Enjoy lunch at a Local Restaurant in Salt Lake.
Afternoon: Following lunch, drop off those flying out Friday afternoon at the Salt Lake Airport and then drop off those staying an extra night at the Salt Lake Plaza Hotel. Please do not make Independent Departure until after 3:00 PM on Friday or it will impact the final day experience for the rest of the group due to shuttling problems to airport plus disrupt Program Finale. If flight times are not available to fly home Friday afternoon, you are encouraged to just book an extra night at the Salt Lake Plaza Hotel and enjoy the rest of the day exploring downtown Salt Lake City. Plus enjoy the many museums, visitors centers, Temple Square (which is the most visited tourist destination of all five Utah National Parks combined!). Then depending on your Sunday morning flight departure time, you will certainly enjoy the live broadcast of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir Sunday morning across the street in the Tabernacle from 9:30-10:00 AM (be in your seats by 9:15 AM). If you want to experience this unique opportunity, book your departure flight after 11:30 AM. Happy Trails to you. We hope you had a wonderful, memorable and educational week as you built lasting bonds and memories between generations!