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Utah Travel Headlines

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Impressive Video: Logan And Extreme Biking

Two videos caught my eye today, and I have embedded them below.

The first was made by the Logan, Utah, Chamber of Commerce and it is an impressive work intended to entice people to travel to, play in and move to the Cache Valley area. The photography is splendid - worth taking a look.


Then there is the little biking video, showing part of the Red Bull Rampage. It has become a viral hit on the Internet and we are pulling it from the UK's Daily Mirrorwebsite. Here are quotes from the accompanying article:

This video will have you holding your breath as you watch a brave cyclist navigate his way down a rocky mountainside in Utah.

But this is no ordinary cyclist, mountain biker Geoff Gulevich is known for tackling the world's most extreme landscapes on two wheels and living to tell the tale.

But it's not often that we can experience all the gasp-inducing drops and dramatic stomach-churning turns for ourselves without leaving the comfort of our own home.

The video doesn't show much scenery, just a razor thin trail under the bike's wheels. But you get a good taste of the action. Of course, there are plenty of Utah bike trails that are not this extreme. Still, enjoy...

Monday, April 21, 2014

Celebrate International Dark Sky Week At Utah's Dark Sky Parks

This is National Park Week in the U.S. and special activities are being held at many of Utah's Mighty 5 parks.


The is also International Dark Sky Week (April 20-26, 2014). Some of our national parks and monuments have certified dark skies and often host star parties and other events. Below we provide dark sky info about some of our parks, along with links where you can get additional information.


Natural Bridges National Monument
On March 6th, 2007, Natural Bridges National Monument became the first International Dark Sky Park certified by the International Dark-Sky Association. This is one of the great places in the world to set up a telescope or do time-lapse photography to capture star tracks.


Bryce Canyon National Park
Bryce will host its 14th Annual Astronomy Festival June 25 - 28, 2014, when the park's Dark Rangers and the Salt Lake Astronomical Society welcome Australia's award-winning photographer and amateur astronomer Alex Cherney. Don't miss this keynote presentation on Friday, June 27 at 9 pm.

Cedar Breaks National Monument
To celebrate and share the beauty of its dark night skies, Cedar Breaks will be hosting a series of Star Parties, to be held at the Point Supreme Overlook on Saturday nights beginning July 6 through August 31. A constellation tour and telescope viewing through several large telescopes will be facilitated by park staff and astronomy volunteers. Visitors who have their own telescopes are invited to bring them to the Star Party.


The spectacular annual Perseids meteor shower will be highlighted with Star Party activities on August 12. Activities will begin at 9:30 pm in June and July and 9 pm during August. Call 435-586-0787 for more detailed dates and information. NOTE: These events are dependent upon good weather!


Summary of Star Party Dates:
July 5, 12, 19, 22, 26
August 2, 9, 12 (Perseids), 16, 23, 30

Friday, April 18, 2014

National Parks Are Free This Weekend, Other Spots Crowded

Admission will be free at U.S. National Parks tomorrow and Sunday - including Utah's Mighty 5 parks. Special events will be held at many, as we kick off National Parks Week.

KSL.com has this article about National Parks Week. Below are excerpts.

Entrance fees will be waived at all U.S. national park sites this Saturday and Sunday, April 19-20, to kick off National Park Week, which runs through April 27.

Visitors still have to pay the usual fees at campgrounds and concession stands.

Many of the parks will have special activities for kids on National Junior Ranger Day on April 24.

Expect Crowds At Little Sahara Recreation Area

Easter weekend always brings crowds to Little Sahara Recreation Area, in west central Utah near the town of Delta. Sand dunes there are ideal for buggies, ATVs, dirt bikes and other machines. Expect campgrounds to be overflowing and a party atmosphere.

The Deseret News has this article about the Easter tradition. Below are excerpts.

This Easter tradition goes back a ways. The largest gathering at the dunes is reputed to have occurred in 1977, when some 60,000 sand enthusiasts showed up for the weekend. That was two years before the BLM organized Little Sahara into a national recreation area in 1979.

After that, user fees resulted, predictably, in lower but still impressive numbers. Anywhere from 15,000 to 30,000, depending on weather conditions, have showed up on Easter weekend ever since.

Jay’s point is that there is no “normal” when it comes to dune-seekers. Some come in families and play in the sand like they’re going to the beach. Some set up their 45-foot motor homes and dine on Chateaubriand. Some sleep under their dune buggy. Some go to bed at sundown. Some don’t go to bed at all.

This weekend kicks of the camping season for many people and many of our state parks and other recreation areas will see plenty of visitors.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Digging Utah's Dinosaurs

Major new dinosaur sites are discovered in Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument on a regular basis and the world has taken note. News articles have been frequent. Now, National Geographic magazine is spotlighting the area in a huge, 20-page feature, complete with impressive photos and graphics.

National Geographic titles the feature: Digging Utah's Dinosaurs. It will appear in the May 2014 issue.

Deseret News and Salt Lake Tribune both have background articles on the magazine article.


Here are a couple excerpts from the National Geographic article:

Around 75 million years ago, Utah was part of an island landmass called Laramidia. It was hot and swampy—and dinosaurs ruled...

...During the 20 million years or so that it existed, Laramidia seems to have been a runaway dinosaur factory, cranking out large and small dinosaurs in a surprising diversity of species. Figuring out how and why that happened, the researchers said, could tell us something fundamental about the interplay between ecology and evolution.

...That’s why he and his team return season after season to the Utah badlands, where every trek into the desert sheds new light on Laramidia’s story. “Every rock you crack open, you’re saying, Oh my God, I’ve never seen that before,” Miller said. “It’s brand-new. Unknown to science.”

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Comic Con Runs April 17-19 In Salt Lake City

Downtown Salt Lake City will attract legions of strange creatures during the next few days, as the huge Comic Con event takes place at the Salt Palace. Many actors and performers will be in custom, as will many fans. There will be plenty of opportunity to see, learn and participate.

The Deseret News has these two articles about the convention. Below are the headlines and then excerpts.


Narrowing down the staggering amount of options at this weekend's Salt Lake Comic Con FanXperience can be a daunting task. The FanX event will play host to over 100 pop culture celebrities and provide over 200 hours of entertainment experiences, ranging from Q&A panels to dancing lessons, and from the cast of "Star Trek: The Next Generation" to the wildly popular actor Nathan Fillion, who was brought to the convention by the voice of FanX's Facebook fans.


From “The Walking Dead” stars Chandler Riggs and Jon Bernthal to the Monkees’ Mickey Dolenz to the Power Rangers and the recently announced appearance of the 1966 Batmobile, the Salt Lake Comic Con FanXperience will attempt to appeal to fans from many demographics.

The Salt Lake Comic Con website has this list of special guest. Many guests will participate in photo ops and sign autographs.

The convention released this interesting tidbit:

Salt Lake Comic Con 2013 was a record breaking event. In Utah, the previous largest convention in the state’s history was 27,000. Our first year Comic Con was attended by over 72,000 people. It was also the largest first year Comic Con in North American history and we sold over 50,000 tickets. On April 17-19, 2014 expect the event to be better in every way. Thanks for your support.
 
Here's a video clip from last year's event.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Utah Symphony To Perform At Utah's National Parks

Utah Symphony and the Utah Office of Tourism are partnering to bring musical performances to gateway communities near our Mighty Five national parks.

The Symphony held a news conference today announcing the tour. Here are some details:

The Utah Symphony's Mightly 5 Tour
Five National Parks. One Epic Week.

Only in Utah
When the heat of the summer day wears off, let the Utah Symphony’s Mighty 5™ Tour take you away to the desert evening sky for an inspiring symphonic experience you can only get in Utah. Go hiking, climbing or sightseeing in Southern Utah and capture these unforgettable performances set against the backdrop of Utah’s nationally treasured parks. In honor of the beautiful surroundings, supportive patrons, and generous sponsors these concerts are being presented for free.

Tuesday August 12 / 8 pm
Teasdale Community Park, Teasdale, UT (near Capitol Reef National Park)

Thursday August 14 / 8 pm
Red Cliffs Lodge, Moab, UT (near Arches and Canyonlands National Parks)

Friday August 15 / 8 pm
Ruby's Bryce Canyon Rim at Ruby's Inn, Bryce Canyon, UT (near Bryce Canyon National Park)

Saturday August 16 / 8 pm
O.C. Tanner Amphitheatre, Springdale, UT (near Zion National Park)

The Deseret News offers more detail in this news article. Here are excerpts.

These concerts will be free for tourists and our community members, making them as accessible as possible and allowing us to give back the great gift of music to our community,” (Symphony President and CEO Melia) Tourangeau said.

Tickets will be made available May 1 through select partners when booking lodging and recreation packages. Starting July 1, tickets will then be made available at select Zions Bank locations and online. Any remaining tickets will be distributed at the gate on the evening of the performance. Visit utahsymphony.org/mighty5 for additional information.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Enjoy A Taste Of Cache Valley Plus Volunteer At State Parks

Now's the perfect time for spring road trips and one destination often overlooked this time of year is the Cache Valley/Logan area in northern Utah. Logan is a beautiful small city surrounded by checkerboard farms and towering mountains. It is fun to watch the agricultural land come to life now that the earth is warming.

The Cache Valley Visitor Bureau has put together this fun "Food Tour," providing information about local businesses that provide outstanding service and tasty culinary offerings. Here are a few excerpts, title lines. You'll have to view the complete guide to get the details.

Chocolates
Bluebird Candy Company, 75 West Center, Logan
(435) 753-3670

Dairy Products
Aggie Ice Cream and True Blue Aggie Cheese, USU Nutrition & Food Science Building, 750 North 1200 East, Logan
(435) 797-2109

Honey
Cox Honeyland, 1780 South Hwy. 8
(435) 752-3234

Volunteer At Great Salt Lake Nature Center
If you enjoy children and wildlife, consider becoming a volunteer at GSL Nature Center, located just northwest of the Farmington Bay Waterfowl Management Area near Farmington, in Davis County.

Diana Vos, director of the nature center, says the center's spring field trip season for school kids is underway. "We're looking for energetic and enthusiastic people to help us run the weekday field trips," she says.

If you'd like to help run field trips or staff the nature center, contact Vos at 801-589-2373 or dianavos@utah.gov.

Work At Jordanelle State Park
Jordanelle State Park provided this information:

Would you like to work in the outdoors? Jordanelle still has some openings for Quagga techs and maintenance. Contact the park and pick up an application if you are interested in a summer job. 1-435-649-9540
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