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Utah Travel Headlines

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Quick Video Tour Of Canyonlands, Arches and Dead Horse Point

Tom Whipp has posted a beautiful new video on the sharing site and you an see it below. He called it "A Trip Too Hurried" gave it this title: Canyonlands, Arches and Dead Horse Point National Parks.

Canyonlands and Arches are indeed national parks. Dead Horse Point is actually a Utah state park. Still, the video is beautiful and shows some of the fun to be found in these areas.

Canyonlands, Arches and Dead Horse Point National Parks. from Tom Whipp on Vimeo.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Bryce Canyon Winter Festival

The annual Bryce Canyon Winter Festival will be held February 18-20. It is headquartered at Ruby's Inn, just outside of the park entrance.

Bryce Canyon National Park is located at a high elevation where snowfall is usually plentiful. The festival offers a wide assortment of snow sports and other winter activities. Scheduled activities are listed below. (Activities may vary depending on weather conditions.)
  • Cross country ski tours
  • Snowshoe tours and races
  • Archery clinic
  • Ski Archery competition
  • Kayaking demos
  • Waxing clinics
  • Photography clinics
  • Photo contest
  • Snow sculpture contest
  • People-powered sled race
  • Kids snowboot races
  • Entertainment
Watch the festival website for updates on conditions and activities.

The Salt Lake Tribune has this article about the festival. Below are excerpts.

The keystone events of the Winter Festival occur on Presidents Day when a 2KM kids cross-country ski race and a 10KM free technique race are held on the groomed track at Ruby’s Inn. Children who aren’t quite ready for the ski race can compete in Kids Snowboot Races in several age divisions.

Another popular ski-related event is the archery 6KM biathlon, being held on the 19th this year. Got no archery equipment or never pulled back a bow? No worries, an archery clinic held on the 18th will be enough to prep anyone for the biathlon and a limited amount of archery equipment is available.

Friday, January 27, 2012

See Bald Eagles In Utah On Feb 11

Utah offers many spots where you can watch and photograph wildlife and one of best related opportunities takes place on Bald Eagle Day. A large number of eagles spend the winter in Utah and they are relatively easy to find, view and photograph. Utah's Department of Wildlife Resources (DWR) has set up viewing spots throughout the state to help people see the majestic birds. Over the years, Bald Eagle Day has evolved into our most popular wildlife viewing event.

The DWR provided this news release about the event:

Bald Eagle Day is Feb. 11

If you’ve ever seen a bald eagle in the wild, you know it’s an experience that can take your breath away.

On Feb. 11, you’ll have a chance not only to see bald eagles, but to learn more about them. The Division of Wildlife Resources will hold its annual Utah Bald Eagle Day that day.

Bald Eagle Day is free. You can see eagles at five locations across the state. Viewing times vary depending on the viewing site you visit.

Northern Utah
Salt Creek Waterfowl Management Area (Compton’s Knoll), located about 10 miles northwest of Corinne

Viewing will take place at Salt Creek from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

In addition to seeing the eagles at Salt Creek, you can also see a captive bald eagle that volunteers from the Ogden Nature Center will bring to the event. The captive eagle will be at the event from 10 to 11:30 a.m. Make sure you bring your camera with you—this will be a great chance to take a picture of your kids standing next to a real bald eagle!

To reach the WMA, take Exit 365 off of Interstate 15 and travel west on state Route 83 through Corinne. Stay on Route 83 until you get to 6800 West (Iowa String). Travel north to 6800 N. Travel west on 6800 N. until you reach the Salt Creek WMA/Compton’s Knoll Watchable Wildlife site.

Farmington Bay Waterfowl Management Area, located on the west side of Farmington at 1325 W. Glover Lane (925 South)

Viewing will take place at Farmington Bay from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

In addition to seeing the eagles, you may want to visit the Great Salt Lake Nature Center. The center is at 1700 W. Glover Lane on the northwest side of the WMA.

Diana Vos, the center’s director, says the center will hold special Bald Eagle Day activities for kids and families. “HawkWatch International will also bring some live birds of prey to the center,” she says. “You can see the live birds from about 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.”

You can also get a close look at a stuffed bald eagle. The eagle is on display at the nature center.

If you’re traveling north on Interstate 15, coming from Salt Lake City and other areas south of Farmington:

To reach the WMA, travel north on I-15, and exit the freeway at Exit 322. After you exit the freeway, the off ramp will fork left and right—stay to the right. After the road forks, take your first right turn, and continue south on the frontage road to the stop sign on Glover Lane. Turn right on Glover Lane, and follow the road west.

To reach the Farmington Bay WMA, travel to 1325 W. Glover Lane, and turn left into the WMA.

To reach the Great Salt Lake Nature Center, continue west on Glover Lane to 1700 W. After going past a "Dead End" sign, the paved road to the nature center will be on your left.

If you’re traveling south on Interstate 15, coming from Ogden and other areas north of Farmington:

To reach the WMA, travel south on I-15 and exit the freeway at Exit 325. Go to the stoplight and turn right on Park Lane. Travel south to the next light, which is at Clark Lane, and turn right. Travel west to the first stop sign, which is at 1525 West, and turn left. Travel south to Glover Lane.

To reach the Farmington Bay WMA, turn left (east) on Glover Lane, and travel to 1325 W. Then turn right into the WMA.

To reach the Great Salt Lake Nature Center, turn right (west) on Glover Lane, and continue west to 1700 W. After going past a "Dead End" sign, the paved road to the nature center will be on your left.

Central Utah
Fountain Green State Fish Hatchery, located east of Nephi

Viewing will take place at Fountain Green from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

If you’re coming from the north, you can reach the hatchery by taking Interstate 15 and exiting the freeway at the second Nephi exit (Exit 225). After exiting the freeway, turn east on state Route 132 and travel about 10 miles. About 1 mile before the city of Fountain Green, a Bald Eagle Day sign will point you to an access road that leads to the hatchery.

Once you reach the hatchery, you’ll be given a driving map of the Sanpete Valley that highlights the best areas in the valley to view eagles. Literature, displays and bathroom facilities will also be available at the hatchery. Spotting scopes will be set-up at a viewing location about one mile from the hatchery where eagles often gather in a large tree.

Northeastern Utah
Split Mountain/Green River, located north of Jensen and below the Dinosaur Quarry in Dinosaur National Monument (DNM).

Viewing will take place from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

To reach the site, drive north from U.S. Highway 40 in Jensen on the road (state Route 149) to the Dinosaur Quarry.

Your first stop should be at the staging area located just inside the DNM boundary. Displays and spotting scopes will be available at the staging area, and you might be able to see bald eagles and other raptors in the distance.

You can also see live birds close up! At least two live birds of prey—and maybe as many as four—will be on display at the staging area. Their handlers usually bring the birds to the staging area in the morning. The birds are kept at the staging area until the birds decide they no longer want to cooperate with the crowds.

From the staging area, biologists will direct you to other sites where you may have better views of eagles and other wildlife of interest. In past years, visitors have seen bald and golden eagles hunting and feeding, as well as prairie falcons, hawks, mule deer, river otters, pheasants, turkeys, sandhill cranes, porcupines, mergansers, Canada geese and other wildlife.

During your trip, you may also want to stop and see the dinosaur bones and exhibits at Dinosaur National Monument. The Dinosaur Quarry and DNM’s new visitor center are open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. The visitor center also includes a small bookstore and warm bathrooms.

Southern Utah
Cedar Valley, about four miles northwest of Cedar City

Viewing will take place in Cedar Valley from 3 p.m. until dusk.

To reach the site, exit Interstate 15 at Exit 59, and travel west on state Route 56 to 3900 W. Turn right on 3900 W., and travel north to 2800 N. The viewing site is at 3900 W. and 2800 N.

Get a close look
Bob Walters, Watchable Wildlife coordinator for the DWR, says spotting scopes will be available at each viewing site so you can get a good look at the eagles. “Biologists and volunteers will also be on hand to help you spot the eagles and to answer your questions,” he says.
You can also pick up information about bald eagles and wildlife watching and birding opportunities in Utah. The material will be available for free, or for a small cost.

The best time to attend
The best time to see eagles on Feb. 11 depends on what’s most important to you: staying as warm as possible or seeing more eagles!

If staying warm is most important, attend late in the morning or early in the afternoon. Walters says the warmer temperatures during this time of the day are especially important if you bring young children with you.

Late morning and early afternoon is also the best time to get a clear view of the eagles.

If you want to see the greatest number of eagles—with fairly good light conditions and reasonably warm temperatures—attend between 2 and 4 p.m.

Between 2 and 4 p.m., eagles will start flying to trees at many of the viewing locations to roost for the night.

“If you want to see the greatest number of eagles,” Walters says, “mid to late afternoon is usually the best time to attend.”

Items to bring
If you attend Bald Eagle Day, dress in warm clothes and bring waterproof boots. Also, if you want to take photos of the eagles, bring a telephoto lens.

“The eagles will be a fair distance from the viewing areas,” Walters says. “In the past, we’ve had photographers try to get close to the eagles. They ended up scaring the eagles away.”

Utah’s most popular viewing event
Walters started Bald Eagle Day in 1990 as a way to introduce people to Utah’s wildlife.

“I started Bald Eagle Day because I wanted to make people aware of the wildlife around them,” Walters says. “I wanted to whet their appetite to see more.”

Since it began, Bald Eagle Day has become Utah’s most well attended, and one of its most enjoyed, wildlife-viewing events.

“I think the event is still accomplishing its purpose,” he says.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Salt Lake 2002 - Ten Year Olympic Anniversary Celebration

It’s been 10 years since Salt Lake City hosted the 2002 Winter Olympic games. The games were a smashing success and the legacy they left has had a positive influence on our state.

A big anniversary celebration will be held during February, with plenty of opportunity for people to participate.

A prominent business executive named Mitt Romney headed up the Olympics and he will be in town for some of the festivities. KSL TV has this report about this visit. Here are excerpts.

Romney, the former head of the Salt Lake Organizing Committee, will speak at a Feb. 18 ice skating show at Energy Solutions Arena.

The 2002 Olympic Games taught us that our aspirations can become reality. The 3,500 athletes and more than 50,000 members of Team 2002 dared to make their dreams real," Romney said. has detailed information about celebration events. Here are highlights:

- Relighting the Flame - A ceremonial relighting of the 2002 cauldron takes place the evening of February 8, remaining lit for public viewing through February 11.

- 10-Year Anniversary Olympic Sport Festival - Saturday, February 18

- A Tribute To Salt Lake 2002 With Stars On Ice - February 18

- Park City Community Celebration - February 1

- Utah Olympic Park Community Celebration - February 9

- Kearns Community Celebration - February 17

In addition, there are ongoing Olympic exhibits and activities at venues.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Utah Hotels Rank With The Best In The US

Recent travel industry rankings show Utah has hotels and restaurants that rank among the best in the US. has this report about rankings by Here's an excerpt:

The Grand America in downtown Salt Lake City was ranked as the second-best luxury hotel in the U.S., the Waldorf Astoria Park City ranked fifth and the St. Regis Deer Valley in Park City ranked 18th. The Sky Lodge in Park City was rated the 14th-best overall hotel in the U.S., while the Red Mountain Resort in Ivins ranked as the 16th-best relaxation spa in the country.

See the page with the rankings. has this report about rankings by AAA. Stein Eriksen lodge in Park City and The Grand America Hotel in Salt Lake City earned prestigious 5-diamond awards. AAA gave 14 Utah lodging establishments were ranked as 4-diamond. Thirteen Utah restaurants ranked as four-diamond.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Utah Now Has Massive Snow - Even Some In Our National Parks

We've just ended a string of several stormy days, and the results are dramatic. Some of our ski resorts have received more than four feet of new snow during the past week. Conditions are now very good for skiing and boarding.

Our newest resort, Eagle Point, located near Beaver in southern Utah, was left dry until this last series of storms. It now has three feet of snow and will open this Friday for daily operation.

Yesterday's storm pushed through southern Utah and dropped a little snow at Zion Park. An unnamed park employee posted an amazing photo to - you can see it here. (It is copyrighted and so we can't show the image.)

Canyonlands National Park reports snow on Island In The Sky Mesa: Snow, snow, snow at ISKY! Highway 313 is plowed to Dead Horse Point SP but not beyond yet. Shafer Trail is closed again. (Didn't last long.)

The snow will melt quickly from our national parks - it may already be gone from exposed areas but it will linger a bit longer in shady spots. It creates dramatic scenery. Wish I could get down there tomorrow.

- Dave Webb

Monday, January 23, 2012

Major Motion Picture Studio Coming To Park City

The annual Sundance Film Festival is underway in Park City and so many of Hollywood types are wandering around town. Now, a new deal may bring some of them back on a more permanent basis, since the city has inked an agreement to bring a major Hollywood studio to town.

Here are a couple new headlines from Sundance: has this report about the studio deal. Here are excerpts.

Summit County and Park City officials have reached an agreement that would bring Raleigh Studios to Quinn's Junction. The deal, which has been five years in the making, also includes a hotel and entertainment center.

Raleigh Studios is the largest independent motion picture operator in the country. It produces popular TV shows like CSI:Miami and films like Iron Man 2 and The Avengers. The project, and the included soundstages, would allow Utah to compete with neighboring states for production.

There is one more step in the process, though. As part of the agreement to bring Raleigh Studios here, Park City would have to annex the land. The City Council will consider that during its meeting on Thursday. Once approved, the development could break ground this summer.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Heavy Snow In Utah's Mountains, Rain And Flood Problems In Some Valleys

Skiers and board riders are celebrating because Utah resorts have received heavy snowfall during the past few days. Some resorts report up to 30 inches of new snow, with another big storm on our doorstep.

Avalanche danger is now significant in backcountry areas. Developed ski resorts perform avalanche control work that minimizes danger. Avalanche control is also done above highways that pass through mountainous areas. The danger comes in the backcountry. If you ski or snowmobile into the backcountry you need to be very careful and take measures to stay safe. The Utah Avalanche Center has information on current conditions along with forecasts and safety information.

Valley rain has caused flooding in some areas near Logan and Ogden. In the small town of Liberty, several basements have been flooded and there is standing water across some streets. A storm coming in tomorrow could drop more rain the area and that could aggravate the problem.

Major highways have not been affected - they are safe and in good shape. Some secondary roads near Liberty have been flooded. People are advised not to drive into flood water because it may be deep and hazardous.

These storms have not extended far into southern Utah. Conditions there have been mostly dry and mild.

Travelers should monitor weather and news reports to get the latest information about these potential problems. Here are some news stories to get you started.

Standing flood water amounts to feet in some areas

Cache battles flooding; snow raises avalanche danger

Utah gets socked with mountain snow, valley rain

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Record Crowd Expected At Outdoor Retailer Winter Show

Sundance isn't the only show in town this week. The Outdoor Retailer Winter Show is bringing crowds to Salt Lake City and other show venues. It is Utah's largest trade show and it is expected to draw record crowds this year. It runs today through Sunday.

Most events take place in and around the Salt Palace, in downtown Salt Lake City. Traffic will be heavy in the downtown area. Hotels close to downtown will be full and restaurants will be overflowing.

The Salt Lake Tribune has this article about the show. Below are excerpts.

The not-open-to-the-public show connects buyers from outdoor specialty stores with more than 900 manufacturers from around the world.

“We are expecting an attendance uptick,” show manager Kenji Haroutunian said. “We can see hotel registration numbers are coming in quite strong. There will be 273 new exhibitors at the show. This is the biggest Winter Market ever staged, even without much snow.”

New this year is a confluence between Outdoor Retailer and the Sundance Film Festival, which also opens this weekend, as well as the fact that snowboarding giant Burton will attend the Winter Market for the first time.

“It is still exciting that the outdoor industry continues to embrace our destination and the business opportunity this trade show represents for the industry,” said Scott Beck, president and CEO of the convention and visitors bureau. “Our community’s commitment to our natural environment, as evidenced by the ongoing installation of the nation’s largest rooftop solar panel array [at the Salt Palace], is a reflection of our commitment to clients such as the outdoor industry. The participants in the two annual Outdoor Retailer Markets have helped to engender a vibrant Salt Lake community that celebrates the outdoors in many ways.”

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Sundance Brings Crowds To Park City

The annual Sundance Film Festival begins tomorrow. It is headquartered in Park City and also has many activities in Salt Lake City and surrounding communities. It runs through Jan 29.

Park City is a busy town during the festival. Traffic is often congested or totally clogged on roads into the downtown area. Snow is expected during the next few days and that will add to snarls. People are encouraged to take mass transit buses around town.

Hotels in Park City book out weeks before the festival begins but excellent lodging is always available in Salt Lake City.

A-list celebs will be seen at screenings, parties and sometimes in shops and on the streets. Many people come to the festival hoping to catch a glimpse of a star or two.

The news media will be all over town, along with the paparazzi. Stories and photos from the festival will be published around the world. Below we offer links to a few interesting preview articles.

The Wall Street Journal: What Sundance Is Really Like

The Hollywood Reporter: Sundance 2012: A Cautiously Optimistic Look at This Year's Market

Deseret News: Sundance time: Indie film world gathers in Utah

The Toronto Star: Sundance 2012: 18 movies we’re excited about

MTV: Sundance Brings Out A-Listers And Indies

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Ogden City Cancels Its Winterfest Activity Because Of Weird Weather Forecast

The popular Winterfest celebration in Ogden has been canceled this year because weather conditions are not expected to be favorable. The festival was scheduled to run Jan 27-28.

Northern Utah valleys have received little snowfall so far this winter, and so there is no base for snow sports. An impressive storm is in the forecast for later this week, and it is expected to dump considerable snow on Utah's ski resorts, but valleys may be warm enough that the precipitation comes in the form of rain. That would make it impossible to hold festival events.

The city provided the news release give below:

Ogden City to Cancel 2012 Winterfest

Ogden, Utah (January 17, 2012) - Due to weather conditions and current forecasts, Ogden City has made the difficult decision to cancel Winterfest 2012 scheduled for January 27 and 28 in downtown Ogden.

Little snow accumulation in December 2011 and early January 2012 as well as rain anticipated in the 10-day forecast, has made preparations impossible for the free annual community event. Thus the event will be cancelled for 2012 and is anticipated to resume in January of 2013.

“Unfortunately, it is with deep regret that we announce the cancelation of this year’s Winterfest celebration. We want to express our appreciation to all of the organizations and supporters involved, and we look forward to next year’s festivities,” said Kevin Ireland, Winterfest event coordinator.

Thousands of people were expected to gather for the annual community celebration in downtown Ogden. The event is held at the height of the winter season giving the public an opportunity to enjoy cold weather activities. Most events are free and accessible to all ages. Winterfest activities include snowmobile drag races, human dog sled races, a polar bear swim, skijoring and the new snowmobile freestyle stunt team performances. Winterfest is funded and supported by generous local businesses and organizations.

For more information, please contact the Ogden City Public Services Department at 801.629.8337.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Utah Finally Gets Snow, And More Snow Is Coming

If you are a skier, this would be a great week to visit Utah resorts. In fact, it may be worth changing plans and jumping on a plane to get here fast.

Preliminary reports say Park City and Snowbird both picked up about 2 inches of snow so far today, and other resorts probably received about the same.

Weather forecasters said today's storm would be weak, but that a much stronger system is expect to come in Wednesday. Right now they say there is a 70% chance Park City will get snow Wednesday and Thursday, and a 30% chance they will get more Friday and Saturday.

We've had a dry weather pattern all winter. Now, finally, it looks like that pattern has been broken.

Traffic was a mess on I-15 and I-80 in the Salt Lake area. Temperatures were cold enough that snow stuck to the roads and conditions were slick in spots. KSL has this report about the traffic problems. Here are excerpts:

Although the number of accidents seem high, state troopers say it is actually typical for a light snowstorm, with many people underestimating the amount of snow. And for some, the overconfidence led to some big problems.

State troopers said balding tires and high speeds accounted for much of Monday's mess. Officers are asking drivers to continue to be extra careful while driving on the icy roads.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Where To Stargaze At Sundance

The Sundance Film Festival runs Jan 19-29 with events in the Park City/Salt Lake City areas. The festival draws some Hollywood stars and many people hope to bump into them while attending festival activities.

The celebrities will be in town for specific film events and so there are predictable spots where you are more likely to see them. The Salt Lake Tribune has this article which lists likely spots. Here's the lead paragraph from the article:

The first weekend of Sundance screenings in Park City offer the best chances for stargarzing, thanks to the lineup red-carpet premieres. That’s why we’ve compiled this handy-dandy guide with confirmations of talent sent by movie publicists. Of course, no such list can ever be 100 percent accurate, but this offers locals an idea of where the star action might be.

See the festival website for details about events.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Have Fun in the Sun at St George Winter Bird Festival

The annual St George Winter Bird Festival runs Jan 26-28. It offers a great opportunity to view a large number of bird species while enjoying the marvelous weather in the St George area, which is known as "Utah's Dixie." The festival provided the news release below.

See more than 100 species of birds

St. George -- A chance is coming up to see more than 100 species of birds in southern Utah’s red rock country. The St. George Winter Bird Festival will be held Jan. 26 - 28.
The festival will be held in St. George and at bird watching hot spots in Washington County. For more information and a schedule of events, visit

Marilyn Davis, the festival’s coordinator, says the St. George and Washington County area attract birders from across the West. “The area is a hot spot for wintering birds,” she says.

Davis says at last year’s event, viewers saw more than 100 species of birds. “We saw everything from Vermillion flycatchers to roadrunners,” she says.
Lynn Chamberlain, regional conservation outreach manager for the Division of Wildlife Resources, says if you’re interested in birds, you should have a great time at the event.

The Division of Wildlife Resources, Red Cliffs Audubon, the city of St. George and Dixie State College have teamed up to put this year’s festival together. This is the ninth straight year the festival has been held.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Utah Has Lowest Gas Prices In The US

Travel with Utah just became easier, thanks to a double-digit drop in gas prices. AAA's gas survey shows the Beehive State has the lowest prices in the US, and that St George has the lowest prices of any metro area tracked by AAA. has this article about the report. Below are excerpts.

Utah’s current average price for a gallon of regular gasoline is $2.92, which is a decrease of 22 cents since last month’s AAA report on December 13. Today’s price is 12 cents higher than a year ago. Of the Utah cities surveyed by AAA, Salt Lake City had the highest average price at $3.10 per gallon. St. George’s price was the lowest at $2.85 per gallon. That was also the lowest price in the country in metro areas tracked by AAA.

The national average price of $3.37 is up by 10 cents, which is 28 cents more than the national price on this date last year, when it was $3.09.

Wailuku, Hawaii, holds the dubious crown for the highest average price in the nation, at $4.36 per gallon. The highest price reported by AAA in the lower 48 states is in Eureka, California, where the average price is $3.88. Among the lower 48 states, the highest average state price reported by AAA was achieved by California, with an average price of $3.70.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Bluff Balloon Festival

The annual Bluff Balloon Festival will be held January 13-15, in the small community of Bluff, near Monument Valley. The festival provided the information below. (Also see this printable flyer.)

Bluff, Utah, the little town with the great can-do attitude is hosting the Annual Bluff International Balloon Festival on January 13-15, 2012. It started with one balloon and oodles of volunteers. We still have the volunteers, a tremendously supportive business community, and the nicest, most experienced group of balloonists imaginable.

Why do they return year after year? Simple. Bluff provides some of the most beautiful, unencumbered red rock flying in the Southwest. The big, colorful balloons are flown by a big, colorful cast of characters with hearts as large as their flying orbs.

Watch as their colorful balloons kiss the red rock bluffs! Fun lovers of all ages will enjoy this very friendly event in our beautiful river valley. For more information, contact Marcia Hadenfeldt at 435-672-2290.

Schedule of Events

All events take place at the Bluff Community Center

Friday, January 13
  • Fly Bluff - 7:00 am
  • Navajo Taco Supper (Bluff Elementary School benefit held at the school) - 5:00 pm
Saturday, January 14
  • Balloons fly in Bluff! - 7:00 am
  • 5K Run - 7:00 am
  • Arts Fair - 10:00 am-3:00 pm
  • Southwest Cuisine Cookoff - 3:30-5:30 pm
  • Balloon Glow-In - 5:30 pm
Sunday, January 15
  • Fly Valley of the Gods (check in at Bluff Community Center first for weather confirmation.) - 6:30 am
To become a sponsor, contact Steve at 435-672-2341
Art Fair vendors, contact Gene at 435-672-9959
For general information, contact Marcia at 435-672-2290
5K Run, contact Steve 435-672-2341

Monday, January 09, 2012

Find Deals During Learn To Ski And Snowboard Month

January is National Learn to Ski and Snowboard Month. During this month many Utah resorts are offering special deals and incentives to help people get hooked on these sports. Many of the deals are restricted to Utah residents only. Sorry about that.

If you are a Utah resident and you want to learn ski, check out the deals. You will never find any better. Ski Utah has this comprehensive information about the promotion.

Playboy Ranks Alta/Snowbird As #1
In other news, Playboy Magazine has ranked Alta/Snowbird as the number 1 ski area in America, based on the quality of the snow and the terrain.

The Salt Lake Tribune has this article about the article. Here is how it concludes.

If the resorts don’t provide enough excitement, Playboy suggests checking out Wasatch Powderbird Guides for a “plop in the endless sea of virgin terrain that is the Wasatch Range.”

There was a sexy picture with the story, but we were too busy reading the article to pay attention.

Friday, January 06, 2012

Get Ready For Sundance

The Sundance Film Festival is already generating considerable news coverage around the world, even though it does not begin until Jan 19. (It runs through Jan 29.) If you are interested, there is still time to get tickets for film screenings and other events.

The festival website has good information on "how to Sundance."

Park City lodging books solid during the festival but there are always lodging options available in Salt Lake City, Provo and Ogden. If you don't have lodging lined up, book it now. is updating a Sundance Diaries series and already has a few posts.

The New York Times has this article about a new deal that will bring past Sundance films to popular web outlets including Amazon, Hulu, Netflix, iTunes, YouTube and SundanceNOW. has this new article about the Occupy Park City movement. Participants are struggling to figure out how to push their agenda without "disrespecting the festival."

We will bring you more Sundance updates as the festival gets underway.

Thursday, January 05, 2012

Ski Big, Save Big! Alta, Brighton, Snowbird & Solitude

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Wednesday, January 04, 2012

SkyWest Launches Jet Airline Service Between Cedar City And Salt Lake

Rapid travel between Salt Lake City and Cedar City will be easier now because SkyWest has started service using jet aircraft.

SkyWest provided the news release below:

CEDAR CITY, Utah, Jan. 4, 2012 – SkyWest Airlines is pleased to offer a faster, easier, more convenient travel experience for passengers flying between Cedar City and Salt Lake with new jet service! The twice-daily Delta Air Lines flights operated by SkyWest Airlines begin service today. The larger jet aircraft cuts down on travel time and provides added comfort for passengers.

“We’re pleased to bring jet service to Cedar City travelers; now it’s up to the community to build and sustain demand for its long-term success,” said Mike Thompson, SkyWest Airlines vice president – Market Development. “This jet service is a great opportunity to advance Cedar City’s development,” he continued. “Truly, there’s never been a better time to fly Cedar City.”

The new service is onboard the 50-passenger, Bombardier-manufactured Canadair Regional Jet 200 (CRJ200). Each state-of-the-art CRJ200 is outfitted with the latest technology and is designed to be one of the most comfortable aircraft in its class.

Passengers from Cedar City will continue to enjoy access to hundreds of daily departures to destinations around the world via Delta Air Lines’ global network in Salt Lake City.

Customers may begin booking flights immediately at or by calling Delta reservations at 800.221.1212. Remember, the best fares are always available at

An Open House to celebrate the new jet service will be held at the Cedar City Regional Airport on Jan. 12 from 4-5:30 p.m.

This press release and additional information about SkyWest Airlines can be found at

Tuesday, January 03, 2012

Bryce Canyon Among 25 Dazzling Snow Scenes On

Bryce Canyon National Park is very photogenic know matter what season you visit. But many people think the scenery is most stunning in winter. The folks at agree. They are featuring the park as one of 25 "dazzling snow scenes."

A prominent link on the website home page leads to a sideshow with images from the 25 scenes, which come from around the world. Besides Bryce Canyon, the scenes include "The Wave" on the Utah/Arizona border and the Grand Tetons in western Wyoming.

This link should take you to the article. However, it seems like their server is getting more traffic than it can handle and the page hasn't been coming up lately. I did see it, and it is impressive, but lately it comes up with a server error.

So, the photos shown here are mine. I visited Bryce last week specifically to get winter photos. That was an easy and enjoyable assignment. I hiked along the rim and also hiked a couple trails down into the canyon and came back with a bunch of great photos.

There was about a foot of snow on the ground. Trails were snowpacked with icy spots. Park people had sprinkled sand on the ice and so traction was not a problem.

I was surprised by the number of people in the park. There were people on all of the trails and at all of the viewpoints.

Bryce in winter is catching on.

Monday, January 02, 2012

Hiking Zion Park In Winter

Utah has been under a mild, dry weather pattern that looks like it will continue for a few more days. Skiers are lamenting the lack of new snow. Our resorts have been making snow to keep the runs open.

Me, I’ve been hiking in our national parks, taking advantage of surprisingly good conditions. Last week I hiked in Zion and had a great time. During the afternoon the temperature climbed into the low 50s F and I was perfectly comfortable wearing a light sweatshirt.

I explored around Checkerboard Mesa and found considerable snow in spots. The snow did not block trails and I think it added to the scenic qualities – the area was very beautiful.

I also dropped down into Zion Canyon and followed the Gateway to the Narrows trail to its end. There was just one ice spot on the trail and it was sandy, so the ice was not slick. Icicles hung from the canyon wall in many spots.

As the canyon narrowed, the trail was shaded and the temperature dropped a bit, but it was still very pleasant.

I was surprised by the number of people in the park. During winter the park shuttle does not run and visitors are free to drive to trailheads and parking areas. The Weeping Rock parking lot was full and the Temple of Sinawava lot was almost full.

I stayed in St George and saw many people out on that area's great golf courses. It looks like conditions are excellent right now for hitting the links.

- Dave Webb
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