Fun things to do in Utah

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    Explore Bryce Canyon National Park

    by blueskyjohn Written Sep 23, 2013

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    Bryce Canyon National Park has some very unique features known as "hoodoos." These hoodoos are formed by erosion from ice and rainwater wearing away the weak limestone. Bryce is open year round but can have many trail closures, especially in winter. Winter can be severe because Bryce Canyon rim is at 8000 feet above sea level and that is where you can gain access to the park.

    There is a $25 entrance fee. The main area of the canyon is toward the entrance and the one most photographed. Camping is available and reservations can be made online at www.recreation.gov

    Bryce also has a Lodge in the park and a visitor center.

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    Explore Zion National Park

    by blueskyjohn Updated Sep 23, 2013

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    Zion National Park was the first national park I visited many years ago. One of my favorite parks. Zion is located in the southwestern part of the state and is only a 3 hour drive from Las Vegas. There is a $25 entry fee. In 1997, the park service introduced a shuttle service to replace the number of vehicles driving to Zion Canyon Scenic Drive. The shuttle must be used from mid March to the beginning of November. Vehicle are permitted all other times. The drive through the park on route 9 is one not to be missed.

    There are two visitor centers, Zion Canyon (Main entrance) and Kolob Canyon to the north. These two are not connected by road and you would have to exit the park to get to the other. There is also a hotel in the park, Zion Canyon Lodge.

    Zion is different than other "canyon" national parks such as Bryce or Grand Canyon because all visitor centers, camping and the lodge are on the canyon floor. There are several hiking trail throughout the canyon floor, included the hike up the Virgin River to the "Narrows." All over night backpacking requires a back country permit that can be obtain at Zion Canyon visitor center.

    There is several campgrounds within the park. You must reserve this in advance at www.recreation.gov

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    Golden Spike National Historic Site

    by Jim_Eliason Updated Aug 18, 2013

    This is the point at which the first rail line across the US from east to west came together in May 1869. The site is literally still in the middle of nowhere ( about 1 1/2 North of Salt Lake City). At the site are replicas of the two trains that met and the site where the spike was laid.

    Golden Spike National Historic Site Golden Spike National Historic Site Golden Spike National Historic Site Golden Spike National Historic Site Golden Spike National Historic Site
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    St George's

    by Jim_Eliason Written Oct 28, 2012

    This town in Southwestern utah is the gateway to Zion National park and many of the other National parks of southern Utah. In addition it has its own history as a early center of mormonism and as the winter home of Brigham Young.

    St George's St George's St George's St George's St George's
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    International Balloon Festival

    by emw.weaver Updated Dec 22, 2011

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    If you are visiting Utah in January, you might want to check out the annual International Balloon Festival in Bluff, Utah. Bluff sits right at the southeastern corner of Utah right next to the Valley of the Gods. Sounds important?! Because it is. To get to Bluff you can go through the switchbacks of the overwhelming Valley of the Gods. Once you enter Bluff you have a sky full of hot air balloons of all colors and themes. The experience is amazing and once the balloons ground mid-day you have not only the valley to see, but also Goosenecks State Park and the Natural Bridges National Monument you can visit within a few minutes of each other.

    Balloons! In the distance
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    Arches National Park

    by AcornMan Updated May 16, 2011

    No trip to Utah would be complete without a trip to Arches National Park. From outside the park you'd never guess there's anything unique up there. But after just a short ascent after entering you'll be amazed by the landscape and of course the arches that dot the landscape.

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    Bryce Canyon National Park - Don't miss it!

    by AcornMan Written May 16, 2011

    People come from all over the world to visit Bryce Canyon National Park, and after you see it for yourself you'll understand why. There is truly no other place on earth like it. For more information have a look at my VT page:

    http://members.virtualtourist.com/m/71f79/d7676/

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    Great Salt Lake

    by Segolily Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    There are so many things to see and do on and around the Great Salt Lake. For the brave you can boat (too salty), or float (too salty and too many brineshrimp). You can walk and walk and walk through its waters trying to get deep enough to try to float. You can hike Stansbury and Antelope Islands. Antelope Island State Park also has biking, and kayak rentals, buffalo roundups, and an old farm with tours and wagon rides, You can visit world renowned landscape art at the Spiral Jetty. Bird watching at Farmington Bay and Bear River Bird Refuge usually offers avocets and Wilson's Phalarope, swifts, eagles and more. Saltair resort hosts concerts from new and off-beat bands. I know I should have an entry for each of these, but right now I'm just thinking overview. I have a love/ ignore kind of relationship with the lake... I love it, but it is so easy to ignore. Yet there is no more beautiful sunset than from its shores, there are no more quiet moments than from its waters. If you want any specific information email me and I'll answer any questions.

    Stansbury Island from Great Salt Lake State park
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    Zion National Park - Checkerboard Mesa

    by Ewingjr98 Updated Apr 4, 2011

    In Zion National Park, which if full of unique landforms, Checkerboard Mesa is the most famous on the east side of the park. This area features stone with horizontal and vertical lines, forming a very rare checkerboard pattern.

    The checkerboard More checkerboard-patterned rock Rock formations

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    Newspaper Rock Recreation Area

    by windsorgirl Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    En route to Moab, we stopped briefly at Newspaper Rock to have a look at the ancient petroglyphs left by the Puebloan people hundreds of years ago.

    The sandstone cliff is covered with images of horses with riders, animal pelts, paw prints and human feet with six toes. The engravings were very well preserved and easy to view, it was fascinating to see and well worth the detour, I thought. There is also a primitive campground here amongst the large cottonwood trees.

    If you continue west past this site, you will soon arrive at The Needles District of Canyonlands NP.

    Newspaper Rock Art
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    Zion NP in Spring

    by imamtngirl Written Mar 13, 2011

    April is my fav time to go to Zion NP. Summers are to freakin hot!!! April is coolish at night but really nice in the day. We love the hikes and I seriously do not know how people do them in the summer when it's ridiculously hot. There is a chance that it will rain but we only ever had it storm on us once and we've been there a few times in April.

    I highly recommend the hikes. There are 4-5 shortish easy ones that won't take up all your time. The Riverside Walk at the end of the Scenic Road is beautiful. It gives you a taste of the hiking Narrows without actually going into the river. The Emerald Pools trail is also an easy one and is beautiful. I recommend lunch at the Park Lodge.

    If you are interested in an amazing hike that takes you to the top of the world you should really go on the Angels Landing hike. It's tougher and if you have a fear of heights parts of it will make your stomach turn over but it's worth it. I hate heights but the view from the top is so worth facing your fear.

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    Bonneville Salt Flats

    by Segolily Updated Mar 12, 2011

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    When the giant prehistoric Lake Bonneville began disappearing the salt content of the water became concentrated in the north end. Eventually all that was left was the Great Salt Lake. But in the flat land to the west of the lake the salt had nowhere to go and so it stayed behind. Miles and miles of white crystalline sodium cloride. In the winter the land may soak in water, but come the hot, hot days of summer and the water evaporates and again the salt flats are left behind.

    It is then the the cars show up, hoping to test themselves to see just how fast they can go. The flat and barren land is perfect for speed.

    Salt Flats close up of the salt
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    Hardware Ranch Elk

    by Segolily Written Feb 26, 2011

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    Check out the elk at Hardware Ranch. Much like the more famous elk winter feeding program in Jackson Hole, the Hardware Ranch feeds the elk in the winter in order to prevent them from coming further down into the valley to feed in the farmers fields- and more often now not having even that as housing takes over traditional feeding grounds.
    How many they have an any one time depends on the snow level. If the elk can find feed elsewhere they won't come to the ranch. But when the snow is deep they can have over 600 elk in the area.

    Visitors can take a half hour sleigh ride through the herd. Not allowed to leave the sleigh and subject to going where the driver directs, the experience may not be outstanding. Nevertheless it is amazing to get so close to so many elk at one time. They feed on the hay and rest. When we were there some younger elk were running at each other a little further away from the rest expressing their eagerness for action.

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    Tree of Utah

    by Segolily Updated Oct 16, 2010

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    Along 1-80, just east of Wendover along the Bonneville Salt Flats one drives by the "Tree of Utah". The joke is that there aren't natural trees, so the sculptor (Swede, Karl Momen) created one of his own. If you are heading west there is a pull off. Stop and take a look if you are in the area.

    Don't just drive by
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    Wander through a Slot canyon

    by Segolily Updated Oct 16, 2010

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    Slot Canyon: a sinuous trench carved by water, deeper than it is wide.

    Utah has its share of slot canyons. The first and still best is the Narrows in Zion National Park following the 2000 ft deep canyon carved by the Virgin River. There are plenty of others though.

    Walking though a canyon with rock walls hundreds of feet above you, going on and on and on through this crack in the earth carved by water can be an incredible experience. It is highly recommended. Find a book, search the web, ask guides once you get here and find yourself walking down a narrow slice of canyon.

    Zion Narrows central Utah slot canyon
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Utah Things to Do

Reviews and photos of Utah things to do posted by real travelers and locals. The best tips for Utah sightseeing.
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