Dakota Hogback / Dinosaur Ridge
Location: Jefferson CountySize: 2168 acres Designated: January 2002 Landowner: Jefferson County
The prominent ridge which forms the primary feature of the Natural Area provides excellent illustrations of the geology of the Dakota Hogback, including exposures of the Dakota, Lyons and Lykins formations. Dinosaur Ridge, a national natural landmark paleontological site is included in the Natural Area. Here dinosaur tracks, bones, plants and trace fossils are well-exposed in this hogback of Morrison shales capped by Dakota Sandstone.
The hogback south of Dinosaur Ridge supports good examples of mixed foothills shrublands, pinyon-juniper woodlands and mixed grasslands. The hogback as a whole acts as a raptor migration corridor. Outlier populations of the rare endemic plant Physaria bellii (Bell's twinpod) occur on Niobrara shale outcrops in the area. The area also provides a scenic western backdrop for the Denver metropolitan area. Click here to visit the Friends of Dinosaur Ridge website for more information.
Colorado State Parks & Natural Areas by Frank WestonPublished September 1, 2008Click here to purchase.