Information on:

John Day Fossil Beds National Monument

32651 Highway 19


Interesting in learning about the history of paleontology in the John Day Fossil Beds? Download The Fossil Frontier. This pdf handout is designed to be printed on legal paper (8.5x14 inches.) It also available at the Thomas Condon Paleontology Center.

Fossils may have been the reason that John Day Fossil Beds National Monument was established, but the human story goes back thousands of years and many people call this place home.

Finished in the year 2000, a comprehensive book commissioned by the National Park Service explores the regional history that intersects with the monument. Click the Rocks and Hard Places link below and navigate by chapter to read more on the amazing human stories of the John Day country.


Dale Eagar

Tuesday, July 17, 2018
Interesting, educational and great for exploring and hiking. The landscape changes a great deal between the different units of the park. Take in at least two units and experience the differences and see how they are the same as well. It will be worth the time. If you decide to visit the Painted Hills, try to schedule the visit in the afternoon, the colors will be more vivid in the later sunlight.

Thomas Humphrey

Monday, June 4, 2018
We went here over the Memorial Day weekend. It was incredibly fascinating. There are several movies that can be played that talk about the area and why it is the way it is. The walk through area was especially interesting, as there are real fossils on display. For those wanting to dig their own fossils, you have to go to Fossil, Oregon which is a little over an hours drive away but totally worth it. Sheep Rock is also a short jaunt down the road but again worth the extra time

Bettykay Taylor

Sunday, June 3, 2018
Beautiful country. The place to go if you want to learn about geology, especially Oregon geology. We had a great ranger talk at the paleontology center. The trails are beautiful with something different around every corner. The surrounding country is so gorgeous, too.

Emily Kimes

Monday, June 25, 2018
Amazing! It was a cloudy day but the colors were still impeccable. The fossil beds themselves were a bit boring to me, but I absolutely recommend doing the longer hike up Carroll rim and all the view points (there are 4 main spots here, I did them all and enjoyed all of them). I recommend wearing pants and shoes you don’t mind getting dirty, as after the hike out shoes and bottoms of pants were just caked with the clay from the ground and was then all over the floor of the car, so be prepared!

Adam Cook

Wednesday, July 4, 2018
Painted hills were amazing to see. We did not have time to see the other 3 areas but will make a trek back to see the rest. Worth the detour to see these amazing areas.

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