Photography: Peter Vordenberg
I've been planning this trip for years. This was a birthday trip designed to entertain a gaggle of kids and for the kid in me.
My first fascination with Dinosaur National Monument began in the 4th grade. I chose to do a presentation on Duchesne county because at its far eastern border lay Dinosaurland.
There is an actual dinosaur quarry where kids and the kid at heart can touch actual fossils embedded in rock and walk among dinosaurs. When I was a kid it was still a working quarry but now they no longer remove fossils from the rock in order to preserve the massive wall of fossils for future folks to wonder at.
Vernal has come a long way since I was 8 years old.
The fracking boom brought some nice hotels for families and some great restaurants.
One of the hikes in the national monument took us along a clear creek full of feisty rainbows.
The kids were troopers on the 2 mile hike down to ancient petroglyphs and pictographs left by the Fremont indians who once inhabited the area.
In between wrangling kids I'd slip into the stream and catch a few.
Josie really wanted to catch a fish and take one home for dinner. She was packing a couple rocks in case she had a chance to bonk one on the head.
My son, Taavi, was very interested in the tenkara rods.
Pocket water paradise...
Taavi helped me net a few little guys.
When John Wesley Powell's crew camped on this tributary of the Green River it was chock full of giant native cutthroats fed by the rich spring waters. Now it is all rainbows and a few brown trout.
Sight fishing to eager trout is a rare treat.
This big guy confidently slurped my dry fly off the surface!
Thanks Pete for the stunning photographs.
Usually when we turn the camera on me, the fish turn off. But I managed to catch a few while the camera was rolling this time.