Not too far from Cripple Creek is this small park that is very interesting in its own right.
Florissant Fossil Beds is an area that once had redwood trees. Today it contains one of the richest fossil deposits in the world. You'll see the petrified stumps as you travel along walkways, with some stumps up to 14 feet wide. Also preserved are thousands of insect and plant fossils. But to get anything out of it, especially with children, you have to apply yourself. The park staff can certainly help you in that respect. Otherwise you're just looking at a bunch of dead wood. This is the type of park I totally enjoy - small and not overwhelming.
The park is in the Colorado high country. The backroads route from Cripple Creek to Florissant is a treat in itself. It's paved, but not like a state highway, and not as heavily traveled.
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