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Finally, the Rockies
66 million years ago (Late Cretaceous)

Find the clickable hot spots for details and evidence, or follow the links below. (Click to see larger image)

Description: The Colorado Front Range has formed, bringing mountain topography back to Colorado for the first time in nearly 200 million years. Warm air and plentiful rainfall promote a bounty of plant life. Huge plant-eaters such as Triceratops browse in a forest of palm tree thickets and patches of paddle-leaved plants. Climbing ferns, herbaceous plants, and a variety of broad-leaved trees also grew here. Home to hundreds of turtles, birds, lizards, tiny mammals, frogs, and snakes, this landscape is also the turf of Tyrannosaurus rex, the largest meat-eating animal in North American history.

Formation: D1 - Denver Formation

Artist: Gary Staab

Best Viewing Spots:

  • South Table Mountain
  • Pulpit Rock Park
  • Austin Bluffs Park
  • Palmer Park
  • Green Mountain

I-70 road cut
Like the Pierre Shale, the Denver Formation is rarely found as outcrops. This is the rock layer that lies below downtown Denver. This picture was taken at a roadcut on the side of I-70 about thirty miles east of town. The Denver Formation is exposed in the cut beneath the overpass.

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