Tips for visiting Newspaper Rock in Utah

Posted By Allison on Oct 30, 2012


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Hello!

If you’re planning a trip to Arches or Canyonlands National Parks in Utah, consider a side trip to Newspaper Rock. We stopped at this petroglyph site on our way back to Salt Lake City from Mesa Verde National Park in Colorado.

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I really like petroglyphs, but in my experience, much of the ancient rock art throughout Southern Utah is best viewed through binoculars, from an off-road vehicle, or along a hiking trail. Newspaper Rock is easily accessible by car and the petroglyphs are abundant, clear and low to the ground so that anyone, including little children, can easily see and appreciate them.

Scholars know little about how old Newspaper Rock is, or what its symbols mean. They do believe that it represents 2000 years of history, from at least six different groups of people, including a few white settlers who left their marks. It is estimated that most of the ancient art dates back to before 1300 A.D.

Scholars may not be able to explain Newspaper Rock, but your children might have some ideas about it. This is a great place to introduce children to ancient American history and ask them questions about what they see and what they think it might mean.

Tips for visiting Newspaper Rock in Utah | tipsforfamilytrips.com | Moab | Monticello | Canyonlands | Arches | petroglyphs | summer vacation ideas | spring break ideas | fall break ideas | family travel

Make it a trip

Newspaper Rock is located just outside of Canyonlands National Park and a little south of Arches National Park and Moab. It’s about two hours away from Four Corners Monument. We visited this great spot on our way home from Mesa Verde National Park. All of these would be great additions to a trip that includes Newspaper Rock.

Good to know

Where: On Highway 211, about 13 miles west of Highway 191 in southeastern Utah, between Moab and Monticello. It is on the way to one of the entrances to Canyonlands National Park. It is well-marked.

When: Year-round, weather permitting.

How Much: FREE

How Long: 15 minutes or more to see Newspaper Rock and take photos, not including drive time. If you’re taking a side trip from your travels on Highway 191, plan about one hour.

Amenities: Primitive toilets. Bring your own hand sanitizer. There are no restaurants, gas stations or lodging between Highway 191 and Newspaper Rock. Bring a picnic or snacks.

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Allison
Hi there! I am the founder of Tips for Family Trips. I am a married mom of two children, ages 10 and 12, living near Salt Lake City, Utah. We took our first child on a two-week road trip when she was four weeks old and we have been traveling as a family ever since. We love to get out of the house to see and do fun things, both far away and in our own neighborhood.

3 Comments

  1. I think it’s pretty cool that they let you get that close to the petroglyphs. Most of the ones that I’ve seen have been either very small or very far away. I could definitely spend a lot longer than 15 minutes just trying to decipher the story being told on that rock.

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  2. That’s the spirit! Steve, you inspired me to add “or more” to the How Long section.

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  3. Now, this is cool! The ones I’ve seen are also from afar. This is such a fun activity with the kids. I’ve always found petrogylphs fascinating too. You just added another item to my “Reasons I need to go back to Moab soon’ list. Thanks Allison!

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