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Camping and hiking information with tips for parents
More to do at Camp-A-Roo Great places to camp Fun games for in the car and at the campground Camping Resources Projects to entertain the whole gang Main Page five.gif
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The Fantastic Painted Desert & the Phenomenal Petrified Forest!
Organ Pipe
Petrified Forest
Walnut Canyon
Joshua Tree
Red Top Mountain
Angel Peak
Montezuma Castle
Montezuma Wells
Arches Nat. Monument
Capital Reef
Natural Bridges
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Let's Discover Petrified Forest National Park
Children's Activity Book, Ages 6-11
The Petrified Forest National Monument
The petrified forest is a great place to spend a day. You could try to do the trip in half a day- but you'll miss all of the short "fall out of the car " hikes. Every stop is fantastic, and you won't want to miss any of it!
This park qualifies as a four Roo site.

For information on the Roo rating system just click on the Roos!
rangersThere are two Ranger Stations in this park. You will find one at the southern entrance to the park, and another at the northern entrance. I prefer entering the park by the southern entrance. You can go the other way, of course - but the park seems to be laid out for travel from south to north. Near the southern entrance is an easy walk through an area with some fantastic displays of petrified rock as well as some really interesting erosion. You will also find a gift shop just across the street from the Ranger Station.
picnicThere are many turn-outs in this park, and some do offer picnic tables. I did not see any fire pits or stoves, and there are no camping facilities here.

trailsBackcountry hiking and camping is allowed with a permit. There are many short trails ( 2 miles or less) from the main road, and everything is well marked and well maintained. I stopped at every turn-out and must recommend that you do the same if possible. Every single walk was great and you won't want to miss anything.
I suggest you grab a room for the night in the

nearest town to the west if you aren't interested in hiking your gear in for a few miles. (I will proved the name of this town in upcoming improvements:)The accommodations are reasonable- but beware! Make sure you see the room you're getting before you pay. We were given a really cheesy room with a bed with a hole in the middle of it (no kidding!)
husband in valley with colorful erosion and had to put up a real fight for our money back.The guy running the place offered us a better room- but for a BIG price increase!

waterFill up at the Ranger Station! The hikes are short, but it can get very hot and facilities with water are few and far between.

If you happen to run across the "Route 66" store, make a stop! The shop offers an interesting selection of Route 66 memorabilia, and the people running the place are very hospitable.

Trail of the Roo
Camping Store