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Utah Travel Headlines

Friday, June 28, 2013

Deer Valley Music Festival - Music In Utah's Mountains

The Deer Valley Music Festival is the summer home for the Utah Symphony and Utah Opera. It brings outstanding musical performances to the mountain resort town of Park City.

The Festival offered this introduction: "We are celebrating our 10th season of providing chamber music, classical, and pops offerings in several venues: the Deer Valley Resort Snow Park Outdoor Amphitheater, St. Mary’s Church, Temple Har Shalom and salon events in private homes in the Park City area."

The Festival offers something for everyone. This season's schedule includes:

1812 Overture!
June 29 | 7:30 PM | Deer Valley® Snow Park Outdoor Amphitheater

After Hours, Featuring Blues Traveler
July 5 | 9:45 PM | Stein Eriksen Lodge

Take Me Home - The Music of John Denver starring Jim Curry with the Utah Symphony
July 6 | 7:30 PM | Deer Valley® Snow Park Outdoor Amphitheater

Bravo Broadway: The Wicked Divas
July 12 | 7:30 PM | Deer Valley® Snow Park Outdoor Amphitheater

Arturo Sandoval with the Utah Symphony
July 13 | 7:30 PM | Deer Valley® Snow Park Outdoor Amphitheater

Haydn, Mozart, & Schubert
July 17 | 8 PM | Saint Mary's Church

Steve Martin and The Steep Canyon Rangers Featuring Edie Brickell with the Utah Symphony
July 19 | 7:30 PM | Deer Valley® Snow Park Outdoor Amphitheater

Indigo Girls with the Utah Symphony
July 20 | 7:30 PM | Deer Valley® Snow Park Outdoor Amphitheater

Muir String Quartet
July 23 | 8 PM | St. Mary's Church

French Favorites
July 25 | 8 PM | Temple Har Shalom

Mozart's "Prague" Symphony
July 31 | 8 PM | Saint Mary's Church

Skyros and Battery String Quartets
August 1 | 8 PM | Saint Mary's Church

Bond and Beyond
August 2 | 7:30 PM | Deer Valley® Snow Park Outdoor Amphitheater

Mandy Patinkin with the Utah Symphony
August 3 | 7:30 PM | Deer Valley® Snow Park Outdoor Amphitheater

Beethoven's Symphony No. 1
August 7 | 8 PM | Saint Mary's Church

Utah Opera in the Open Air
August 9 | 7:30 PM | Deer Valley® Snow Park Outdoor Amphitheater

The Music of the Rolling Stones
August 10 | 7:30 PM | Deer Valley® Snow Park Outdoor Amphitheater

"Our 10th Anniversary Festival closes as we celebrate 50 years of "Satisfaction" with a tribute to the Rolling Stones. With the Utah Symphony backing Brody Dolyniuk's screaming vocals, you'll hear your favorite Rolling Stones hits in a whole new way."

Thursday, June 27, 2013

NY Post Tours Utah National Parks

The New York Post his this article with this title:

Three national parks make for one big adventure

Writer Jennifer Ceaser describes her recent trip to Zion, Bryce Canyon and Capitol Reef. She gives a pretty good synopsis of what travelers can expect at these national parks, along with some tips and suggestions to help others have great trips.

Nice photos illustrate the article.

Here are some excerpts:

Once you’ve hiked several miles into a canyon, scrambled across slick rock faces and squeezed through crevices to reach a precipitous ledge where you’ll drop 150 feet by a rope, there’s no turning back. Well, there is, but if you’ve gone this far on your canyoneering expedition, it’d be a long, shameful trek.
Of course, there’s no need to go to such extremes to navigate Zion, which attracts nearly 3 million visitors each year (making it the most visited of Utah’s five national parks).
But there’s no substitute for hiking down into Bryce’s maze of slot canyons, arches and funky sandstone formations. Take the Navajo Loop (the most popular route), then tack on the easy Queen’s Garden Trail to get even better views of those wacky hoodoos (the combined route is about 3 miles).
Now you probably don’t know it, but you’re just a few hours’ drive from another of Utah’s national parks, Capitol Reef. That’s not surprising, given that only 750,000 people annually make the trip along scenic Highway 12 to this 242,000-acre park (it’s nearly seven times larger than Bryce, which gets 1.4 million visitors).
Read the entire article.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

The Lone Ranger: Armie Hammer Talks About Filming In Utah

Below are some impressive quotes from this article that run in The Telegraph, UK. It describes the much-talked about movie, The Long Ranger, which was filmed around Moab and the Monument Valley area.
The latest offering from Hollywood is The Lone Ranger, an adventure comedy released on August 9 - a big screen showcase for the even bigger landscapes of Utah.

The state’s magnificent scenery might just well steal the show, with all-action horse rides played out against a backdrop of red-hued canyons and dramatic rock formations.

In this video clip, Armie Hammer, the actor who plays the masked vigilante, talks about how Utah provided the perfect film location, with no awkward telephone lines to edit out post-production.

Here's the video clip:

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

The Extraordinary Wave

The Wave - Photo By Dave Webb has this great article describing "The Wave." The article also provides good information on how tickets are distributed.

The Wave is a colorful sandstone formation along the Utah/Arizona border, in Vermilion Cliffs National Monument, located just south of Kanab.

Here are excerpts from the article:

The Wave's dramatically flowing contours in bright orange, red, pink and yellow, are a prized image among landscape photographers, who can be seen lugging tripods across the desert wilderness. The fiery swirls have been emblazoned on postcards, posters, maps and computer screensavers.

"It's just become such a ubiquitous, iconic photo," said Kevin Wright, monument manager of Vermilion Cliffs National Monument, where The Wave is located in the Arizona backcountry near the Utah border. Among "people that love the outdoors and have these bucket lists, I think it's become something to check off their list." About a third of visitors are from other countries, particularly Germany, with an upswing from Japan and China in recent years, according to Wright.

Sandstone buttes and huge mesas surround the area throughout the richly colored geological upheaval. The work of powerful tectonic force through the ages is on full display. Panoramas full of jagged red rock project out of the sand. Beyond them, towering hills of rosy stone loom in the backdrop. Some may find the scenery along the way as stunning as the destination.

... Part of the thrill of visiting is wandering around to drink in various angles, which provide a smorgasbord of images for a photographer. The colors change noticeably as varying degrees of cloud cover pass and time goes by.

Read the entire article.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Where To Catch July 4th Celebrations In Utah

If you are traveling in Utah over the Fourth of July, feel free to participate in one of our many Independance Day celebrations.

All of our larger communities, and many small towns, will host festivities that may include pancake breakfasts, parades, patriotic services and fireworks shows. See our events database for info about activities all around the state. Below we give links to some of the more popular celebrations.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Groovefest And Cedar City Arts Festival

The annual American Music Festivalgroovefest and Cedar City Arts Festival will be held June 24-30. The Festival is dedicated to American music: “Whether it is Blues & Folk, Bluegrass & Country Western, Americana, Jazz, Jam… well, the list goes on.”

Click on the photo at right and rotate it to catch the spirit of the Festival. See the graphic below for a schedule of events.

The bulk of the festival happens on Friday and Saturday in the Main Street Park.

To get to Main Street Park from I-15. Take exit 59 in Cedar City and head east on 200 N. Go Just past Center street and look to your left. The Main Street Park is on the corner of 200 N. & Main. You can’t miss it!

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Popular Trail In Dinosaur National Monument Closed Because Of Rock Slide

The Jones Hole Trail in the Dinosaur National Monument has been closed because of unstable rock slide activity.

The Monument provided this news release:

Due to an active rock slide affecting the Jones Hole Trail and adjacent creek, the trail and surrounding NPS lands from the NPS/USFWS fish hatchery boundary to Ely Creek are closed to all public use until further notice, announced Superintendent Mary Risser.

The first reported rock slide occurred on Tuesday, June 18, 2013. A large slab of rock broke free from a cliff face just a short distance inside the monument boundary, about a ¼ mile from the Jones Hole Fish Hatchery. One fisherman reported having to run from a boulder that landed in the stream not too far from his location. After receiving reports, park rangers checked the scene and did not see any further activity.

On Thursday morning another small slide occurred. Then sometime in the late morning/early afternoon a massive slide was reported to staff at the fish hatchery. The slide was large enough to send boulders across Jones Hole Creek and the trail. Numerous trees were also reported to be knocked down and currently blocking the trail. Further details on the extent of the damage will be provided as they become known. The area will remain closed until further notice.

If necessary, National Park Service Rangers will issue citations to persons violating the terms of this closure under authority of Title 36 Code of Federal Regulations 1.5(a)(1). The park asks for everyone's cooperation to protect both visitor and staff safety.

The Jones Hole Trail is a popular hiking trail that connects the Jones Hole Fish Hatchery with the Green River. It is approximately 4.25 miles long one way. The area is also very popular with anglers due to the access to Jones Hole Creek. For more information on Dinosaur National Monument, call us at (435) 781-7700. You can also follow us on twitter at, or find us on facebook at

East Canyon State Park Closed This Weekend

East Canyon State Park posted this info on its Facebook page:

The RAGNAR Wasatch Back Relay is in the HOUSE! They will be here today, tomorrow, and Saturday morning. All park facilities are closed down to accommodate this HUGE event! Highway 66 will be closed from Mile Marker 2 to Highway 65. If you have travel plans, be sure to avoid the area.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Utah Arts Festival Begins Thursday

The Utah Arts Festival will run June 20-23 in Salt Lake City.

The Festival provided this summary:

We're excited to be putting on our 37th Utah Arts Festival and presenting -- among many other talented artists -- Bandaloop, African Showboyz, The Iguanas, and Jason Isbell, along with dozens of local bands, 135 Visual Artists in our Arts Marketplace, and film, urban arts, and interactive art.

The festival is a big draw for the downtown Salt Lake area. It is held at Library Square & Washington Square, 200 East 400 South, Salt Lake City.

The Youtube video below shows highlights from the festival and gives some of its history. It also describes the Festival's collaboration with the J.W. Marriott Library.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Fire Restrictions Imposed In Southern Utah

In southern Utah conditions are dry this year and wildfire danger is high. People traveling and engaging in recreational activities are encouraged to use care and obey fire regulations.

At this writing, three significant wildfires are burning in Utah. They are not interfering with travel or recreation in major tourism locations but may at times cause closures in some specific areas. These fires are listed below:
  • Lackey Fan Fire - 3 mile northwest of the community of La Sal, southeast of Moab.
  • Dark Canyon Fire - Just south of Gooseberry Guard Station, on the edge of Dark Canyon Wilderness Area. If you hope to hike/backpack in the Dark Canyon area, contact BLM to find current conditions.
  • Rock Creek Wildfire - In the Book Cliffs, about 15 miles east of East Carbon City.
Officials have now imposed fire restrictions throughout southern Utah, and similar restrictions will probably be imposed soon in northern Utah. Basically, open fires are prohibited everywhere except in approved fire pits in developed campgrounds. Smoking is prohibited except in vehicles, buildings and developed recreational areas that offer areas cleared of brush.

All kinds of fireworks, tracer ammunition and other pyrotechnic devices are prohibited in developed campgrounds and backcountry areas.

Many communities will probably ban fireworks from foothill areas.

This new article has details about fire restrictions.

Watch the Utah Fire Info website for details about active fires, and for tips and safety rules.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Summer Balloon Festivals

Photo Credit: Deb Hill
Colorful hot air balloons will dot the skies above Utah's scenic landscapes during the next several weeks, as summer festivals are held in many areas. Below we mention some of our favorites.

In Central Utah, the annual Eyes to the Sky Hot Air Balloon Festival will be held June 21-23, launching one mile west of the town of Salina. Some 25 balloons are expected. Balloon launches will be each morning at approximately 6:30 a.m.

Many other events will be held as part of the festival including:
  • Aurora Fire Department Breakfast at launch site
  • Motorcycle Poker Ride
  • Hot Rods & Classic Car Cruise
  • ATV Poker Ride
  • 3 on 3 Basketball Tournament
  • FREE concert with The Long Run, an Eagles tribute band
In Panguitch, down in Bryce Canyon Country, the Panguitch Valley Balloon Rally will be held June 28-30. It will feature 35 hot air balloons plus vendors in the downtown area and a wide assortment of activities including:
  • Live entertainment at Main and Center Street
  • Lion's Club Breakfast
  • Harley Davidson Parade
  • Dog Contest - Prizes for best dressed, owner look-a-like, best kisses, best trick, and best waggin' tail
  • Balloon Rally Bingo
  • Amateur Karaoke Contest
  • Chocolate Fest and Home & Garden Show
  • After the Glow Dance

Other upcoming events with balloons include:

Friday, June 14, 2013

Join The Fun At The Annual Heber Valley Pow-Wow at Soldier Hollow

The annual Heber Valley Pow-Wow at Soldier Hollow runs today through June 16, 2013.

Now in its eighth year, Pow-Wow attracts over three and a half thousand people to the mountains around Soldier Hollow, in beautiful Heber Valley. This three day event has become a family tradition for Native American art enthusiasts, and people who just want a fun summer escape to the cool mountains.

Bring a tent for free camping, or take a quick drive to nearby Heber City, Midway or Park City and stay in a nice hotel or luxury resort. With so much to do in the surrounding area, you're weekend vacation will be one you want to repeat year after year.

The Pow-Wow will include vendors with their own traditional Native American foods and hand crafted jewelry. Looking for authentic Native American pottery or paintings? The Pow-wow will host many different tribes from all over the country, and their unique tribal arts.

Each day shortly after the vendors open, the dancing will begin. The main attraction at the Heber Valley Pow-wow at Soldier Hollow, is the dance contests. Performers from varied tribes compete with their own traditional dancing for a cash prize.

If you find yourself in the Heber area on July 14-16th, this is a unique opportunity to step back in time and enjoy the peace and hospitality found at the Heber Valley Pow-Wow at Soldier Hollow.

For more information go too

The video below shows some of the fun at a previous Pow-Wow.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Help Needed To Move Dinosaur Fossils

Moab Dinosaur Fossils - KSL Photo
If you have a really big helicopter or some extra cash, the Utah State Paleontologist would like your help.

Fossils from a “herd of Utahraptors” sit on the an unstable slope near Moab, and scientists would like to move them to a lab where they can be safely studied.

The associated rocks weight about 5 tons, so a big, powerful helicopter could actually do the job.

KSL has this interesting report about the fossils, complete with video and impressive photos. Here are excerpts:

The area the dinosaurs were found in is believed to have been a death trap. State paleontologist Jim Kirkland theorizes that 100 million years ago a pack of Utahraptors attacked a plant-eating dinosaur stuck in quicksand.

"(They) found this big hulking herbivore stuck in the mud," Kirkland said. "They went in, probably a feeding frenzy, these Utahraptors — old ones and young ones — and in turn, a bunch of these animals got stuck in the mud."

"What's really good about this, too, is the preservation of the bones is just exceptional," said Scott Madsen, another paleontologist with UGS.

The biggest problem the scientists are running into is how to get the mass from place to place. It will require a heavy-lift helicopter from out of state, and that's far outside the UGS budget. Instead, the group is hoping for donations to help fund the project.

Read the complete report.

Utah has many fascinating dinosaur sites. Learn more.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Top 25 Things to Do in Park City has this interesting post with this title:

Park City, Utah Bucket List: Top 25 Things to Do in Park City

Skiing weighs heavily in the Park City list, of course, but also included are ideas that work in any season. Below are titles for the the top 10 items on the list. Read the article to learn details, and to see the remainder of the top 12.

1. Dine on Main Street

2. Ski down Quit 'N Time for a tour of High West Distillery & Saloon

3. Ride the Town Lift

4. Have lunch at the Lookout Cabin

5. Ride the Orange Bubble Express

7. (Window) Shop on Main Street

8. Snag some deals at the Tanger Outlets

9. Ski Neff Land

10. Visit Dolly's Bookstore

See the full list.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

2012-13 Ski Season Brought 5.6% Increase

The numbers are now in and the look good. During the 2012-13 ski season, Utah resorts saw a 5.6% increase in skier days, over the previous year. Now the resorts have switched to summer activities while also launching projects aimed at improving the skier experience and making the next season even better.

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

The total of skier days at Utah resorts for 2012-13 season was slightly more than 4 million visits...

Susie English, director of communications for Ski Utah, said early snowstorms and an improving economy were contributing factors in the 5.4 percent increase is skier days.

“I think one of the biggest things we saw was a ton of demand in the early season,” English said. “With the early snow we got in October and November, people were really excited, which helped carry the excitement through the rest of the season, even though the snow slowed.”

The Rocky Mountain region — Colorado, Idaho, Montana, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming — saw a 1.9 percent increase in skier days in 2012-13.

Read the entire article.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Adopt A Wild Horse Or Burro

Wild horses and burros roam Utah's extensive open ranges – they are living symbols of the American West and important national resources. Some of the mustangs here are direct descendents of the original horses brought over by the first Spanish explorers.

But our range lands can only support a limited number of animals. When they become over-populated, surplus animals are made available for “adoption.” When given proper care, they can be gentled and make excellent riding stock. Many people say they make excellent pets.

Most of the open ranges are located on land controlled by BLM, and that agency manages the animals.

BLM will hold a Wild Horse & Burro Adoption June 14-15 in Kanab. It is being held as part of Kanab's annual Jacob Hamblin Days, which also includes a rodeo, cowboy poetry and other Western activities. The graphic below gives details about the horse & burro adoption. This pdf document has the schedule for Jacob Hanblin Days.

Friday, June 07, 2013

Tour of Utah Race To Make Unprecedented Trip Through National Parks

Since its inception, the Tour of Utah bike race has been known as one of the toughest, and most scenic, bike races in the country.

This year the toughness and scenic quality will both take a bump upward, as the race will cut through the red rock and national park country of southern Utah. has this article describing the race. Here's a quote:

The Tour of Utah has scored one of American cycling's biggest coups, gaining permission to pass through some of the USA's most scenic National Parks, including the Cedar Breaks National Monument, Bryce Canyon National Park and the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument in its first foray to the southern part of the state.

"It makes us proud to host the Tour of Utah - one of the world's premiere professional cycling races. Utah's spectacular and diverse scenery is on the world stage as we host the sport's elite riders right after the Tour de France. Television viewers will get a peek at The Mighty Five™ our five spectacular national parks and will experience our scenic byways that transport visitors through our red rock country. The world will see that some of nature's greatest accomplishments are right here in Utah," said Vicki Varela, managing director of the Utah Office of Tourism.

Stage One presented by Zions Bank begins in Brian Head, the home of Utah's highest-elevation ski resort. The 112-mile (180-km) road race on Tuesday, August 6 begins with a sharp ascent to Cedar Breaks National Monument. The spectacular red rock spires of the Monument contrast sharply with the alpine forest of the Markagunt Plateau as the racers crest the day’s highest point at 10,300 feet. From there the course descends past Panguitch Lake and the undulating roads of Cedar Canyon, meandering alongside the ancient lava beds and alpine lakes of the Dixie National Forest. It reaches a summit of 9,600 feet in the shadow of Cedar Breaks National Monument and overlooks the northern portion of Zion National Park. Due to the location on a high plateau, temperatures in this area are expected to be moderate for summer, highs ranging from 68 to 88 degrees Fahrenheit. The racers will descend nearly 4,000 feet to the finish in Cedar City, with three loops through downtown Cedar City and the campus of Southern Utah University.

Stage Two presented by Utah Office of Tourism will begin on Wednesday, August 7 in Panguitch and meander through the multi-hued sandstone terrain that has been sculpted over 325 million years into hoodoos, spires, mesas, cliffs and slot canyons. This is the longest day for the pro peloton at 131 miles (210 km) and will include 9,877 feet of elevation gain. The road race will pass through portions of Bryce Canyon National Park, the first time the race has entered a national park. It will also cross through Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, the nation’s largest national monument. This stretch will use Highway 12, one of America’s top scenic byways. The second day of racing will conclude with a climb of Boulder Mountain, which is part of the Dixie National Forest, and a sweeping descent into Torrey. This part of Wayne County rests in the shadow of Capitol Reef National Park and the geologic wonder known as the Waterpocket Fold.

The 119 miles (191 km) of racing for Stage Three on Thursday, August 8 begins in Richfield, the seat of Sevier County. This is a relatively flat day, and is the second longest stage of the week. The course does turn upward for a climb of Mount Nebo, which returns after a two-year hiatus from the Tour route. Mount Nebo is the southernmost and highest mountain in the Wasatch Range of Utah, with its lofty peak sitting at 11,928 feet. The cyclists will summit the roadway at 9,300 feet, then have a twisting and exhilarating 22-mile descent into the city of Payson, which rests between the foothills of the Wasatch Mountains and Utah Lake. While the Tour of Utah has passed through this section of Utah County in previous years, it is the first stage finish in this classic western town.

Stage Four presented by University of Utah Health Care reprises the popular circuit race in Salt Lake City on Friday, August 9. The route is similar to the circuit race held in 2011, with the start/finish on Capitol Hill. This year’s 33.8-mile (54.7-km) version will start later in the afternoon, at 5:30 p.m., and include five laps from the Capitol, past the University of Utah, and through the Historic Avenues community. From a start in front of the Utah State Capitol, the course skirts the mouth of City Creek Canyon, with a beautiful panoramic view of the city. Fans in Reservoir Park will get great vantage points as the race passes on three sides before making a hard turn westward onto South Temple. This wide, leafy avenue is Salt Lake City’s stateliest boulevard, including the Governor’s Mansion. After a sharp right turn under the Eagle Gate in front of Brigham Young’s house, riders will confront the 11 percent climb up East Capitol Street toward the front door of the Capitol Building, and complete the circuit.

Saturday, August 10 is Stage Five, the “Queen Stage” of the Tour of Utah which covers 10,611 feet of climbing over 113 miles. This year marks the sixth consecutive finish at Snowbird Ski and Summer Resort for this stage. The stage features a new start at Snowbasin Resort, just northeast of Ogden, for the first time. Stage Five will cross five counties and pass six ski resorts. From the Snowbasin Resort, it’s all downhill into Mountain Green and the Morgan Valley, then up and over an imposing red rock escarpment to East Canyon Dam. After skirting East Canyon reservoir, the peloton will make a short but steep climb over Hogback Summit into the town of Henefer. The route will roll through scenic ranchland areas and take a long, gradual ascent of Brown’s Canyon to access Park City. The showdown for the true climbers begins at this point with an 11-percent gradient across Guardsman’s Pass and crossing for the first time ever into Big Cottonwood Canyon. Following a 14-mile descent through the canyon, the route enters the south end of the Salt Lake Valley to conclude with the final legendary six-mile climb into Little Cottonwood Canyon for the finish at Snowbird Ski and Summer Resort.

For the third time, the Tour of Utah returns to Park City for the grand finale, this year on Sunday, August 11, Stage Six presented by VLCM & Barracuda Networks. Like 2012, the route climbs through the scenic and private Wolf Creek Ranch, with its 2.15-mile climb among aspen trees that reaches a maximum pitch of 22 percent. The race crosses the Heber Valley through the friendly mountain towns of Heber City and Midway before winding its way to the base of Empire Pass. This six-mile climb has sections that surpass a 20-percent gradient and should witness another all-out assault by the pure climbers. Following a blistering descent down Mine Road that was climbed one day earlier, the 78-mile (125-km) road race expects to finish in front of massive crowds in historic Park City on lower Main Street.

Thursday, June 06, 2013

Hike The Narrows With A Zion Naturalist

Hiking in The Narrows - Dave Webb photo
With air temperatures rising and runoff over, now's the time to start hiking the water-filled slot canyons in southern Utah. We offer many great canyon choices and the famous Narrows in Zion Park is perhaps the best of all.

No barriers: Father takes disabled daughter on Zion hike
An interesting news story is being published in papers around the world right now. It describes a father/daughter adventure where a Florida man is working to take his wheelchair-bound daughter on a great hike in each of the 50 U.S. states. Their trek through The Narrows is described in this article first published by the St. George Spectrum. The guy used a special inflatable raft to push/pull/float the girl through the narrow canyon. I found it inspiring.

Hike The Narrows With A Naturalist
The Zion Field Institute has announced its summer workshops and field trips. You can see the schedule here. Included are guided hikes into The Narrows on several dates. These trips are very popular; if you are interested then register ASAP.

Here's the description of the Zion Narrows hike

This 7-mile interpretive hike in the Zion Narrows is an opportunity to experience this dramatic area with a naturalist who will discuss its geology, plants, and animals. Enjoy adventure, service, and learning. Much of the walk takes places in the Virgin River and participants should be prepared to get wet and walk on river rocks using a walking stick. Learn about the power of flash floods to shape the landscape, see hanging gardens, and be awed by the massive vertical slabs of Navajo sandstone that form the canyon. The group will hike to the confluence of Orderville Canyon. During the return trip, participants will perform a brief clean-up in the Narrows to help keep this area beautiful. Limited to 11 participants.

FEE: $60
AGES: 16 years and up

You can register right on the Institute website.

- Dave Webb

Wednesday, June 05, 2013

Moab: A Destination That Could Change Your Vacation Plans

Delicate Arch - Photo by Dave Webb
LA based writer Lanee Lee to a trip to Moab and enjoyed it so much, she penned this glowing article published on

Her title: Rocking Red: A Few Days in Moab

Here's here lead paragraph: World, meet Moab, Utah. Like Disneyland for the outdoors, Moab is a magical place with sci-fi rock sculptures, fossilized dinosaur footprints, and Mars-red dirt adventures. John Wayne probably described it best, as “Where God put the West.”

It is fun to read her descriptions of places and businesses I know well. For example:

If you only do one thing: Hike to Delicate Arch, the Marilyn Monroe of arches.

Arches National Park: The epitome of a wilderness theme park.

Canyonlands National Park: As theatrical as the Grand Canyon, but even more visceral.

Dead Horse Point State Park: Stunning vistas of the sage-green Colorado River, which snakes its way between mesas 2,000 feet below.

Rim Tours: If you’ve never mountain biked before, they lead you with the patience of a saint, instructing beginners on basics with Zen-like advice.

Moab Adventure Center: Like Cinderella’s castle, it’s a place to make your wildest outdoor fantasies come true.

Moab Museum of Film: Movie buffs should stop by the exhibition of cinematic memorabilia at Red Cliffs Lodge.

Sorrel River Ranch: This is where the urban cowboy and cowgirl can hang their hat in ultimate luxury.

There is plenty more in the lively narrative.

- Dave Webb

Tuesday, June 04, 2013

Farmers Marks Offer Fresh Produce At Many Spots Around Utah

If you enjoy fresh, vine-ripened, locally grown or locally produced foods, you should stop by one of Utah's many farmers markets. Many items reach sales tables just hours after being harvested. Some markets also offer local craft items and baked goods.

Of of Utah's products have become quite famous. For example, you won't find better watermelons than those grown in the Green River area in SE Utah. And for fresh apricots, plums, peaches and such, stop at one of the many stands along “The Fruitway” (Hwy. 89 running through the communities of Willard, Perry and Brigham City in northern Utah).

Many of our farmers markets are now open for the season and others will open withing the next week or two. There are markets in every part of the state.

The Deseret News has this current list of know markets, including large markets in the Salt Lake City area and smaller markets throughout the state. Take a look and then plan stops as you travel the state.

- Dave Webb

Monday, June 03, 2013

Public Comment Sought On Proposed New ATV Safari

ATVs seem to bring out strong feelings in people. Many love them, some hate them. There is a hot war ranging in Utah over whether we should expand or reduce the number of ATV trails and ATV events.

Environmental groups often oppose ATVs in every form, while many residents of southern Utah are fighting to maintain local control of roadways and trails, and pushing for more trails.

Now, the town of Monticello has applied for a special use permit to stage an ATV Safari on BLM land near Monticello and Moab in southeastern Utah. That would include trails in the Canyon Rims area, on the edge of Canyonlands National Park. Some groups are pushing for special protection for lands there.

BLM is seeking public comment on the proposal. Below are details provided by BLM.

BLM Seeks Public Comment on Proposed Recreation Permit in Eastern Utah

Monticello, Utah—The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Utah Monticello Field Office (MFO) today announced opportunities for the public to share comments and ideas relating to a Special Recreation Permit (SRP) application for an All-Terrain Vehicle (ATV) Safari in San Juan County.
The BLM is considering a proposal by the City of Monticello, Utah, to host and conduct guided ATV tours on 16 designated routes, also called trails, in areas throughout the Monticello and Moab Field Offices.
The BLM will be preparing an Environmental Assessment (EA) on the proposal and invites the public to provide input on preliminary issues and planning criteria for the EA. A reasonable range of alternatives will be developed to respond to identified issues. Each alternative will outline solutions to the issues and concerns identified.
The purpose of the public scoping process is to determine relevant issues that will influence the environmental analysis, including alternatives, and guide the planning process. The public scoping period is open until June 30, 2013.

Additional information about the proposed project is now available for public review and comment on the Environmental Notification Bulletin Board (ENBB) at:; search for project name “ATV Safari.”

Written comments will be accepted by letter or email until June 30, 2013. Please note that the most useful comments are those that identify issues relevant to the proposed action or contain new technical or scientific information. Comments should be as specific as possible. Comments which contain only opinions or preferences will not receive a formal response, but may be considered in the BLM decision-making process. Please reference “2013 ATV Safari” when submitting comments.
Written comments may be mailed or emailed using the following:

Bureau of Land Management
Monticello Field Office
Attn: Recreation Program
P.O. Box 7
Monticello, UT 84535
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