Monday, September 06, 2010

Jurassic Forest - Gibbons

This weekend Christina and I headed north of the city near Gibbons to Jurassic Forest. The 'park' just opened about a month ago and they advertise it as "The days of the dinosaurs roar to life again in Jurassic Forest, a 40-acre prehistoric preserve, just 15 minutes from Edmonton and 250 million years from the present."

It's a pretty ambitious park promising educational opportunities and state of the art ani-mitronic dinosaurs. I've been really excited to see it since I first heard about it, but heading out there I fully expected to be let down.

We arrived mid-afternoon on the Saturday of the Labour Day weekend. The first thing noticeable was about a billion cars in the parking lot and a really cool high gate.

After speedily going through admission ($13 for adults) we saw the big Triceratops head drawing attention from the kids.

Outside the big admissions building there is a huge play area for kids and the entry to the wilderness dino walks. But first a warning!

The first dinosaur we saw was a massive Brontosaurus.

Immediately we were surprised by the size of the dinosaurs and how they moved when motion sensors are triggered.

You'll find a new dinosaur about every 100 yards. One of the things I really liked is how they put the dinos right in the middle of the forest and didn't really cut down all the brush around them.

The Albertasaurus was pretty cool as it was standing off with some Styracosaurus's.
Here's some video:

The Pteradon and most of the flyer's were kind of lame, but I have no idea how you would feasibly make them exciting.

The hometown dino, the Edmontonosaurus, doesn't look very badass so the less said the better.

When I was a kid I had a pretty sweet toy Dimetrodon so I was pumped to see one 'in real life'.

Also as a kid, I was a big fan of the Stegasaurus, mostly because it sounded like my sister Stephanie.

I really liked this set-up of a pack of raptors attacking a big honking Brontosaurus.

Finally. What you have all been waiting for. The T-Rex.

Note the other dino in his mouth. 

Overall I think the whole experience was awesome and I was totally impressed. I'm going to try and go back in the fall when the leaves are in all colours. I'm also very interested in what they are going to do over winter. Close down the park and tarp the dinos? Keep it open? Christmas themed? T-Rex eating a reindeer would be fantastic. And not at all scary for the kids...

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