Learn about our dinosaurs

Dinosaur Trail


Visiting the Dinosaur Trail

On the Museum of Life and Science's Dinosaur Trail, you are entering a world of late Cretaceous, North American dinosaurs. 


The first scene you encounter takes place 77-75 million years ago. After passing a Parasaurolophus lounging at the head of the trail, you'll come to a fork in the road where a hungry Albertosaurus is charging toward an Edmontonia and a young Styracosaurus. The Edmontonia is crouching down to protect itself, but in this moment the Albertosaurus seems more interested in the Styracosaurus, who is vulnerable after being separated from his herd. Further up the trail, a group of Troodon are stalking a nest of eggs that a mother Maiasaura is protecting. 


The rest of the trail is a scene that could have taken place around 68-65 million years ago. You'll see a pair of Stygimoloch circling each other, fighting. Meanwhile a large Alamosaurus lumbers along while a tiny herd of Leptoceratops dodge the Alamosaurus's feet.

Dig our Fossil Dig Site

And don't forget to visit the Fossil Dig Site along your way. The pit is filled with dirt that has been trucked in from an area in Eastern North Carolina that is rich with fossils – specifically, a mine that used to be on the ocean floor. The fossils in the dirt are 5 million to 23 million years old – too young to contain any dinosaur fossils, but full of the remains of ancient sharks, fish, corals, and shells. Pick up a shovel, dig in, and see what you find!    


Podcast Tours

Listen to paleobiologist and Museum volunteer, Chuck Pell, talk about dinosaur coloration and biomechanics on this 15 minute audio tour. Upload it to your MP3 player before your visit and walk the trail while listening. If you're bringing children, listen on your computer before your visit so that you have plenty to talk about on the trail.


Podcast Icon

Dowload MP3 File
(for any MP3 player, 13.2 MB)


Download Enhanced Podcast
(for iPod or iPhone, 8.1 MB)

Things You Can Do At Home

Visit our Activities At Home page for ways you can learn more about dinosaurs and paleontology after your visit (and so that you'll get even more from your next one). We welcome your ideas for this section and hope you'll share with us what you've created and learned. 


Note: All dinosaur drawings on this website are copyright Thomas Miller.

Durham Dinosaur Sightings