In a single day tenting charges taking chomp at your pockets as Utahraptor State Park takes form

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Recreational vehicles parked where Utahraptor State Park is located northwest of Moab on July 15, 2021. Beginning May 15, there is a $15 nightly fee at the park. (Alex Cabrero, KSL-TV)

Estimated reading time: 2-3 minutes

MOAB – Utahraptors are not a threat to humanity because they are known to have been dead for millions of years; However, the new Utah State Park, named after the extinct creature, is about to get its revenge on your wallet.

The Utah Division of State Parks announced Friday that they will begin charging starting April 15. The fee includes tents, vehicles, trailers, and RVs, as well as any other form of overnight use.

According to division officials, there are no changes in the way people camp overnight, which “was historically permitted at existing scattered sites.” Visitors coming to the park can pay through the Iron Ranger locations at the park entrance or online. The park will continue to not charge for day use, at least for now.

“We ask eager adventurers to remain patient as the area is currently underdeveloped with only primitive campsites available,” division officials wrote in a statement. “Fixed bathrooms, dumpsters, and portable toilets can be found throughout the area. Please use them appropriately and continue to practice responsible rest.”

Utah lawmakers designated Utahraptor State Park last year. Not only is the area where many dinosaur bones were uncovered, it also has recent historical significance. The Civilian Conservation Corps’ Moab camp and WWII Moab Isolation Center were also located on the site, which is now a state park.

The park is to have a visitor center with historical and paleontological exhibitions in the coming years. Additionally, park officials say there will be a modern campground, restrooms, and trailheads for both motorized and non-motorized vehicle trails in the area.

“This is really going to be a park that will appeal to a variety of outdoor enthusiasts,” division officials said. “(State Parks) has been hard at work planning and preparing Utahraptor State Park for updates and construction. Utah State Parks believes that with proper planning and coordination with partners, we can better protect the area while maintaining its recreational value.”

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Carter Williams is an award-winning reporter covering general news, nature, history and sports for KSL.com. He previously worked for the Deseret News. He is a Utah transplant next to Rochester, New York.

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