Browsing the archives for the Central Utah category

The Family History Library – Salt Lake City, Utah

Central Utah

fscenter_lib_slc (1)The Family History Library – Salt Lake City, Utah

Operated by the church of the Jesus Christ of the Later Day Saints this library is open and free to the public to help in the search for your family ancestors.  It is operated by FamilySearch, the genealogical arm of the The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints(LDS Church).

Family History Library can be traced to the founding of the Genealogical Society of Utah in 1894.  It is  largest genealogical library in the world and is open to the general public at no charge.  Not only does it trace the ancestors of the LDS community but also anyone else that wants to find their history.  With the huge data base and microfilms and books available from more than 110 countries the information is available.  There are even people that will assist you with your search for no charge.

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Temple Square – Salt Lake City, Utah

Central Utah

Temple Square – Salt Lake City, Utah

Almost everyone has heard of the Temple in Salt Lake City and many of the tourists that come to Utah come for the specific purpose of visiting the temple and the attractions leading to it.  There are three city blocks in downtown Salt Lake City that contain nearly 20 attractions related to Mormon pioneer history and genealogy.  Besides the Temple there is the Tabernacle, and the Family History Library.

The Salt Lake Temple is a worldwide icon of the Church of Jesus Christ of Lteer-day Saints.  This massive granite ediface was constructed in a neo-gothic style over the course of an astounding 40 year period of time between 1853 and 1893.  Only members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are permitted to enter the temple, but all visitors are welcome to persue the gerounds and see the grandure of the workmanship of the building and the beautiful flowers and shrubs surrounding the area.

The South Visitor Center is just to the south of the temple and contains exhibits on the building of the Temple and on the family.  At this site you can also see pictures of the temple interior.  The staff will be glad to answer any questions that you have.  The Center is open seven days a week from 9 am to 9 pm.

Assembly Hall is the most ornate and colorful building on Temple Square.  It was built in 1877.  It is used today for free weekend concerts.If youa re there on a Friday or Saturday evening you may want to attend the concerts, which are free, and do not require tickets but those under the age of 8 are not permitted to attend.

Salt Lake Tabernacle is the home of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.  It is located just north of Assembly Hall and is truly an architectural and acoustic wonder.  The organ at the front of the Tabernacle contains 11,623 pipes, making it one of the largest and richest-sounding organs in the world.  The building was constructed so that even the drop of a pin at the front of the building can be heard at the back!!  The Tabernacle is usually open daily for tours.  The public is also welcome to attend choir rehearsals on Thursday evenings and the Music and the Spoken Word broadcasts on Sunday mornings.

The North Visitors Center offers the same hours as the South square.  Here is the impressive 11 foot statue of Jesus Christ known as The Christus.

If you are looking for information of genealogical study then you will want to visit the Family History Library.  There are volunteers there to help you through the process if necessary.  The Family History Library is open Monday 8 am to 5 pm and Tuesday – Saturday 8 am to 9 pm.

The Deuel Pioneer Log Home is waiting for you to come and visit.  This is a typical home built in the Salt Lake Valley after it was settled in 1847.

The Museum of Church History and Art features numerous hands-on exhbits such as covered wagons like those the pioneers used.  There is a model log home for you to get the feel of what it would be like for the pioneers to live.  Visitors can also see an 1830’s edition of the Book of Mormon, as well as historical actors, films, and demonstrations.  The museum is open Monday-Friday 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m., and on weekends and holidays 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

The Conference Center seats 21,000 in the auditorium and 850 in the theater.  There are free guided tours available  daily from 9 – 8.  During renovation of the Tabernacle, Music and the Spoken Word is recorded here each Sunday at 9:30 a.m. (Visitors must be seated by 9:15 a.m.) The Conference Center is occasionally home to other events, so you might want to consider calling (800) 240-0075 for information before visiting.

Relief Society Building which is where the church offices and a resouce center are located.  It is the oldest women’s organizaiton in the world and an important part of the church.  It is located on the lower level and offers visitors great ideas how to achieve the goal of strengthening home and family.  Hours are Monday – Friday 9 am – 4:30 pm.

The Church Office Bulding is the administrative center of the church.  It stands 28 stories high and dominates the Temple Square skyline.  Visitors are welcome to take an elevator to the 26th floor and stand on the observations deck.  It is open Monday through friday 9 – 4:30 (5 during the summer).

Brigham Young Historic Park is a  small park which used to be part of Brigham Young’s farm.  During the summer, the park hosts concerts each Tuesday and Friday evening (8:00 p.m. in June and July; 7:30 p.m. in August). Seating is provided, but you can also bring blankets or chairs.

Mormon Pioneer Memorial Monument honors the more than 6,000 pioneers who died crossing the plains between 1847 and 1869.  Brigham Yound is also buried there.

The Social Hall Heritage Museum shows the difficult lives of the pioneers.  The museum, located half a block south of the Pioneer Memorial Monument, is open from Monday through Friday 10:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. and Saturday 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Admission is free.

On the corner of State Street and South Temple is the Beehive House, Brigham Young’s mansion residence. The mansion has been beautifully restored and serves as a museum offering tours showing what life was like for the Young family back in 1855. Tours are free and are available Monday-Saturday, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., beginning every 10 minutes.

Next to the Beehive House on South Temple is the Lion House, another of Brigham Young’s residences. Today the building operates as social center and has a restaurant on the street level called the Lion House Pantry, featuring homestyle meals and baked goods. The Lion House is open Monday-Saturday 11:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Finally you can visit the Joseph Smith Memorial Building which was built in 1911.  It houses several attractions of interest so you may want to stop there.

Heritage Highway 89 – Sevier Valley Region

Central Utah

Heritage Highway 89 – Sevier Valley Region

This portion of the Heritage Highway 89 will give you a taste of the history of the area from pre-historic Indian sites to remnants of the old west.  The farmers and ranchers of the area follow the ancient Native American tradition of living off the land.  There are forts, state parks and historical markers all along the way to give you a history lesson as you travel.

If you can spend a little time in the area you will be able to take in some of the local culture like livestock auctions and Dutch oven dinners that are filled with stories of Butch Cassidy characters.  Truly an enjoyable area to spend some time in.

The highway passes through 13 different areas with history and culture all their own.  Salina was settled in 1864 but was abandoned after the Blackhawk War and rebuilt a few years later.  The community was founded by about 30 families from the Mormon groups.  The found abundant salt deposits in the area so they named the area Salina.

With the creek north of the settlement being able to provide power and water for irrigation, domestic purposes, and run the sawmills, grist mills, salt refineries and generation of electricity the community was well on the way to advanced living.  When the railroad ran through the area in 1891 it became a shipping terminal between the areas settlements and the rest of the state. 

During WWII Salina contained a POW camp, housing 250 German prisoners.  Not all went well during this time because of a Private Clarence Bertucci who climbed one of the guard towers and took aim at the tents of the prisoners.  He fired 250 rounds and managed to hit thirty tens in his 15 second ramage.  By the time he was disarmed he had killed 6 prisoners and wonded 22, three of these would later die of their wounds.

Glenwood was established in 1863.  There was a stone fort constructed at this site in 1866.  It didn’t help when the Black Hawk War of 1867 began.  The settlers and the local indians left Glenwood for a one year period although they came back when peace resumed in 1868.  There are a number of historic buildings to see in Glenwood.

Fish Lake is a small town boasting of deep waters and record trout.  Fish Lake is stocked with rainbow, brown and lake trout, as well as splake.

Redmond is names because of the red mounds west of town.  Bentonite clay deposits and a salt mine are part of this area witht he salt mine being nearly 100 years old and still remains active.

The little town of Aurora offers you some fun shopping in their antique stores and seeing the beautiful hand-sculptured stone furniture.

In Siguird the post office was the key to the community.  You will enjoy seeing all the crafts available in this area.

Richfield is the largest city int he area and is truly a rich farming area.  Creameries, museums, antique stores and more wait for you to come and visit.  While there enjoy the mystic hot springs of the area.

Monroe was a fort built to protect agains Indian invasions.

Joseph (once known as Jericho) honors the heritage of early pioneers and farmers with its Old Farm Museum.  There are tools from the era on display for you to see.

Then there is Sevier which was names in honor of the river and county.

Heritage Highway 89 – Little Denmark Section, Utah

Central Utah

Heritage Highway 89 – Little Denmark Section, Utah

This area of the Hertiage Highway 89 is primarily influenced by Scandinavian prioneers that were sent by Brigham Young to settle the area.  The skill of the Masterful Scandinavian woodworkers and the stained glass providers are relected in many of the marvelous local bed and breakfast inns in the area.  There are 11 different communities that youw ill pass through on this leg of the journey.

Fairview, which was originally named North Bend in 1859, was a site for gathering wild hay.  The name was changed to reflect the few available from the town, 30 miles of grain were visible from the site.  At one time there was a stone fort built with 10 foot walls to protect the settlers from Indians.

Mt. Pleasant was settled first in 1852 as Hambleton Settlement.  The Native Americans drove the origianl settlers from the town and burned the community to the ground.  The settlers relocated to Spring Town (Spring City) and later to Manti for protection.   Wehn a large colonizing party from Ephraim and Manti returned to the area in 1859 they laid out a new, permanent townsite located one hundred miles south of Salt Lake City and twenty two miles northeast of Manti.  By 1880, at which time Mt. Pleasant was the county’s largest city, with a population of 2,000, more than 72 percent of its married adults were foreign born. This ethnic diversity had an important impact on village life during the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. For decades, five languages were commonly spoken in town, creating confusing and sometimes amusing communication problems.  The treaty ending the Black Hawk Indian War was signed here.

Fountain Green was originally a campground for Mormon colonists immigrating to Sanpete VAlley.  The twon was settled in 1859.  With Big Springs, Silver Creek and large artesian wells at this locaiton it helped to jusitfy the town’s name.  It has long been known for its cooperatively owned Spanish Merino sheep herd.  Each July the community has a celebraiton called Lamb Day.  It is famous for its underground pit cooking over 30 lambs that are made into lamb sandwiches.  The event includes a play mutton busting, carnival, softball games, fun run, and a parade so if you are in the area in July, join the celebration.

Moroni was orginally names Mego and Sanpitch which were the names of the local Native Americans.  It was established in 1859 and renamed Moroni for the Book of Morman prophet and angel.  The community is also home to Moroni Feed Company, one of the world’s most successful turkey cooperatives.

Ephraim was settled in 1854 and was once the most important fort built for protection from Indians during the Black Hawk War.  Ephraim is the home of historic Snow College.

Manti was settled in 1849 and is the oldest community in Sanpete County.  Chief Waler invied Brigham Yount to establish the village.  The Manti Temple was bult from local stone between 1877 and 1888.

Sterling was settled in 1873, it has also been known as Pettyville, Pettytown, Leesburg and Buncetown.

When you get to Mayfield you will see why the town got that name, the flowers in the spring are beautiful.

Gunnison was established in 1862 by settlers from Chalk Hill Point and Kearns Camp came together to form a single community on higher ground.

Canyonlands National Park – Moab, Utah

Central Utah

Canyonlands National Park – Moab, Utah

This park is open year round for enjoyment anytime.  You can start out at the Island in the Sky Visitor Center which is located just inside the park, on the main orad leading into the Island in the Sky District.  It is open from 9 am to 4:30 pm daily, except some winter holidays.  They have extended hours spring through fall.  There are exhibits, publicaitons and inforamtion available at the center.  You can also buy some bottled water to have with you when you go out to see the canyons.

If you start in Needles there is a visitor center there too, located on Route 211, just inside the park.  They also have the same information as Island.

The Maze Dstrict – Hans Flat Ranger Station has the same hours and is located 24 miles south of I-70 on Utah HWY 24.  Just south of the Goblin Valley State Park turnoff, on the east side of the road is a dirt road. Follow this road 46 miles to the Ranger Station. Here is where you obtain permits for overnight trips in The Maze District. You may also call 435-259-2652 for permits.

If you go to the Horseshoe Canyon District you will not find a visitor center or ranger station.  The main turn off to Horseshoe Canyon is 24 miles south of I70 on Utah HWY 24. Just south of the Goblin Valley State Park turnoff, on the east side of the road is a dirt road. Follow the dirt road for 30 miles. There is a fork in the dirt road with directional signage. The left fork goes to Horseshoe Canyon and the Right fork to Hans Flat Ranger Station. No water is available at Horseshoe Canyon. There is a vault toilet but no other service. No camping is allowed in Horseshoe Canyon, but is available at the west rim trailhead. No entrance fees required.

Individual Entrance to Canyonlands: $5 (Good for 7 Days) This fee applies to motorcycles, bicycles and walk-ins (per person).

Vehicle Entrance to Park: $10 (Good for 7 days)
This fee includes all occupants of a vehicle.

Local Passport: $25 (Good for one year)
Good for entrance to Arches, Canyonlands, Hovenweep and Natural Bridges.

Island in the Sky is a sheer-walled mesa that consititues the northern part of Canyonlands National Park.  You can take a scenic drive along the rim of the mesa to see this area.  There are pullouts at vistas where you get a fabulous view of the area that has been created by the Colorado and Green rivers.  For those of you that really like to be way up there, just look down and you will see that in many places you are 1,000 feet above the floor, it is vertually straight down.

Island in the Sky is the most accessible district in Canyonlands.  If you are short on time this is the canyon you want to visit.  It is a great place for four-wheeled drivers and mountain bikers.  The route follows the shelves under the mesa rim and extends for about 100 miles.  Some bikers make it in a day but others choose to camp in the designated campsites and finish the next day.  You do need a permit for overnight stays anywhere in the park and be aware there is no potable water at these sites.

If you are looking at visiting the southeastern nportion of the park you will be visiting Needles.  This area has colorful sandstone spires, hundreds of them in fact, coming up from teh canyon floor.  Along with the spires there are entrenched canyons, natural arches and sheet-walled cliffs.  If you are a rock climber you may find this an enjoyable outting.

The area is famous for its rough jeep trails, some considered the most challenging in the world.  You will need to have a high clearance 4×4 optimized for off-road travel to drive some of the routes that are avaiable.

If you want a beautiful place to hike this is the place for you.  You can get ot Chesler Park, Cave Spring, Confluence Overlook, Elephant Hill or Roadside Ruin from the paths that are available here.

You can also see Newspaper Rock which is a large rock covered with figures carved by various prehistoric cultures.  It is a Utah State Historic Monument.

Another area that requires the 4×4 high-clearance four-wheel drive jeep is the Maze.  It is remote with difficult roads and trails.  If you choose to go here you will need more time than requried at the other stops just because of the remoteness of the area.  Rarely do visitors spend less than three days here and actually is better if you plan a week.

While you are in this area you will be able to see the Doll House, Maze Overlook, Land of Standing Rocks, Golden Stairs, and Orange Cliffs.

This isn’t an area that you casually drop into.  You need to know what you are doing, you need a topographical map and gps in order to get around here and not get lost.  You are 100 miles from nowhere, down axel-busing jeep trails where vehicles crawl along at 5 mph so you certainly don’t want to get lost.  Use the right skill set to visit here, it’s not for the amature first outting.

Most trailheads start from four-wheel-drive roads. Visitors with two-wheel-drive vehicles may park at the North Point Road junction, approximately 2.5 miles southeast of the Hans Flat Ranger Station, and hike 15 miles to the Maze Overlook. Depending on the vehicle, hikers may also be able to negotiate the 14-mile road to park at the top of the Flint Trail switchbacks. Another popular way for backpackers to reach the Maze is via jet boat shuttle from Moab. A two-hour shuttle provides access to Spanish Bottom on the Colorado River. From there, a foot trail climbs over 1,000 feet to the Doll House.

Another exciting place to visit is Horseshoe Canyon.  It contains some of the most significant rock art in North America.  It has the “Great Gallery” which offers well-preserved, life-sized humanoid figures with intricate designs.

This canyon is not contiguous witht he rest of Canyonlands National Park.  It is located between the towns of Green River and Hanksville.  You can access it from the Hanksville side, from Utah Highway 24 via 30 miles of graded dirt road.  Or you can come from Green River on 47 miles of dirt road. 

Hike DetailsRound-trip distance: 6.5 miles
Elevation change: 830 feet
Difficulty: Moderately strenuous
Time needed: 4+ hours
Water: Carry all you need. (There may be running water in the canyon, but don’t count on it. Never drink stream water unless it is treated or filtered.)
Seasons: Spring and fall are best. Hiking can be pleasant during mild periods in winter. Summers are hot, but hiking can be enjoyable during morning hours.

Groups of 20 or more must arrange to hike with a ranger. Contact the ranger station at the number below.

Other rules: No pets; no bicycles; no motorized vehicles. A free permit is needed to bring horses into the area.

Tours: Ranger-led hikes are offered every Saturday and Sunday from April-November. Meet at 9 a.m. at the trailhead bulletin board.

Hans Flat Ranger Station: 435-259-2652.

Little Sahara Recreation Area – Jericho Junction, Utah

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Central Utah

Little Sahara.jpgLittle Sahara Recreation Area – Jericho Junction, Utah

Have you been looking for the best place to ride your ATV and face real challenges?  Then you may want to visit the Little Sahara Recreation Area (Jericho Sand Dunes) where you can ride with others on the Sevier Desert of central Utah. The area is big enough and diverse enough that you will enjoy the opportunity to test yourself in different situations that the sand will provide.  The winds also make it a challenge since you will need to be prepared to protect yourself while still being able to see as the wind whips the sand into your face.

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Paiute ATV Trail – Marysvale, Utah

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Central Utah

Paiute ATV Trail.jpg Paiute ATV Trail – Marysvale, Utah

The Pauite ATV Trail usually begins in Marysvale for riders that want to tackle the 275 miles long loop trail.  There actually isn’t a beginning or an end of this trail, you can start wherever you want but Marysvale is a good place to begin.  The trail runs through several towns as well as having side trails running into the main trail.  You will agree that this is one of the top ATV trails in the country when you have completed the ride.

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Fremont Indian State Park – Sevier, Utah

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Central Utah

Immerse Yourself in History at Fremont Indian State Park.  There’s so much to see and do at Fremont Indian State Park near Sevier, Utah, just 21 miles southwest of Richfield!  You could spend a week there and still not see everything available.  Fremont Indian State Park is home to the nation’s largest and most beautiful Native American pictograph treasury.  This historical site preserves the art of the Fremont Indians and provides a unique look into our nation’s history.

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Cleveland-Lloyd Dinosaur Quarry – Price, Utah

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Central Utah

Cleveland-Lloyd Dinosaur Quarry: An Awesome Day Trip for Kids. Have you had your fill of tourist traps, water parks, and malls with the kids?  Drop on in to the Cleveland-Lloyd Dinosaur Quarry, located just 30 miles south of Price, Utah.    A trip to the Cleveland-Lloyd Dinosaur Quarry leaves you and your whole family with lasting memories.

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Ski Vacations in Utah – Salt Lake City, Utah

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Central Utah

 Ski Vacations in Utah

If you want the best place in the world to snowboard or ski you want to come to the mountains of Utah.  There are a number of winter activities available in the mountains besides standard skiing so get ready for some fabulous adventures.

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