In heat of summer, Fossil Rim visitors urged to come earlier in the day

Reporter Staff

High temperatures in the Fossil Rim area over the next few weeks range from the 80s to upper 90s, so the time of your visit becomes more important to consider.

As summer temperatures in the Fossil Rim area over the next few weeks range from the 80s to upper 90s, guests should consider visiting earlier in the day when the air is cooler and the animals are more active.

Fossil Rim, 2299 County Road 2008, opens at 8:30 a.m. and that’s the best time of day for visitors to come see the animals. Hot afternoon visits decrease odds of seeing a lot of animals, according to reports from the center.

From the animals’ perspective, they would rather be more active during the pleasant parts of the day – as well as the evening – and nap when the heat really cranks up.

In order to help them stay cool, some of the animals at the Children's Animal Center get frozen treats from time to time, and those are also available for the carnivores every now and then. Carnivores and the larger animals can go indoors when they want to.

The pasture animals have sheds they can go under. Most enjoy just going under a tree, but the key to remember is that they might not want to be walking around greeting guests in the hot temperatures.

When visitors look at the weather forecast this time of year, it’s important to note that the picnic tables at the park's Overlook are in the shade.

Visitors can bring their own food for a picnic, or order food at the Overlook Café and take it to the nearby tables.

For first-time visitors to Fossil Rim, note that the Overlook area is about halfway through the drive and you will be able to stop there.

Visitors to Fossil Rim from July 2-5 will get some extra time with the animals. On those days, Fossil Rim will open early at 8 a.m. with the usual last-vehicle-out deadline of 6:30 p.m. However, the last-vehicle-in deadline will be extended to 5 p.m.

For more information or to purchase tickets, visit or call the park at (254) 897-2960.

Guests can also help support the animals at Fossil Rim by getting items of need through Amazon Wish Lists.

This link – – takes you to the Animal Care Wish List, but you will also see Wish Lists for APC, CAC Animal Enrichment, Carnivore, and Education.