Petrified Forest Loop and Ponderosa Loop Trails

Florissant, Colorado

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These trails explore Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument’s unique fossil record, passing massive petrified tree stumps and old quarries that have yielded some of the world’s best fossilized insects, butterflies, and leaves. The hikes, which are easily combined into a 1.7-mile loop that begins and ends at the monument visitor center, not only offer fun hiking but also are educational. Interpretative signs are regularly scattered along both trails, giving insight into both yesterday’s fossil record and today’s ecosystems.

Petrified Forest Loop and Ponderosa Loop Trails Professional Review and Guide

"These trails explore Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument’s unique fossil record, passing massive petrified tree stumps and old quarries that have yielded some of the world’s best fossilized insects, butterflies, and leaves.

The hikes, which are easily combined into a 1.7-mile loop that begins and ends at the monument visitor center, not only offer fun hiking but also are educational. Interpretative signs are regularly scattered along both trails, giving insight into both yesterday’s fossil record and today’s ecosystems."

Activity Type: Hiking
Nearby City: Florissant
Distance: 1.7
Trail Type: Loop/Lollipop
Skill Level: Easy
Duration: 30 minutes to 1 hour
Season: Year-round
Local Contacts: Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument
Local Maps: USGS Lake George; trail map available at monument visitor center
Driving Directions: Directions to Petrified Forest Loop and Ponderosa Loop Trails

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May 2018