Fall is the ideal time to hike the Wind Cave Trail to see the colorful foliage. Driving approximately 5 miles up the Logan Canyon National Scenic Byway, you will find the Wind Cave trailhead across the road from the Guinavah-Malibu Campground.
The Wind Cave is composed of a group of natural limestone arches and hollows. It was formed as water seeped through cracks in layers of underground limestone, creating caverns. Downward cutting from the Logan River exposed the caves, and the arches were created by water continuing to erode the limestone.
The trail is rated moderate with an elevation gain of approximately 1000 feet. It is 3.5 miles round trip. The elevation gain does not appear as steep due to switchbacks. The trail is well maintained and is clearly marked. If there is an unmarked trail that leads off, stick with the wider trail.
There is shade for the first half of the trail; however the last half does not have shade. It is advisable to dress in layers, wear a hat and protection from the sun. Be sure to bring plenty of water.
The trail is heavily trafficked at times, particularly during the weekends. If you prefer to hike when less people are on the trail, weekdays are a good option. Dogs on leashes are permitted.
The end of the trail leads to the top of the cave. If you have children with you, be sure to watch them carefully as there are steep drop-offs. You can climb down into the cave and explore the alcoves. It is a great place to rest in the shade of the cave and take photos of the gorgeous views.
Smokey skies from the wildfires did not discourage the volunteers who came out to clean up Antelope Island State Park on a very hot, windy day. A second group of volunteers met at the Great Salt Lake Marina State Park as part of the International Coastal Clean-Up Day.
For thirty-three years, the Ocean Conservancy has been organizing volunteers to clean up litter along their coastline. Volunteers throughout the U.S. and more than 100 countries join efforts to clean up beaches, waterways and oceans. In 2017, over 20 million pounds of trash (majority of it plastic) was picked up during the International Coastal Clean-Up Day.
Friends of Great Salt Lake organized Utah volunteers at two locations along the Great Salt Lake. Five million migrating birds representing 257 species will stop at the Great Salt Lake every year. Migratory birds are not only aesthetically beneficial to humans but have a vital role in the biodiversity for all ecosystems. They help pollinate, disperse seeds and regulate pests.
The effects from littering can have detrimental affects on birds. Discarded and rotting food can attract predators. Rats and feral cats attracted by food waste may also prey on the birds and/or their nests. Litter may lead to habitat loss, with fewer resources for nesting, feeding and shelter. Glass, plastic, fishing line and kite string can cause injuries to birds’ wings, legs, feet, or throats if entangled in them. Birds may mistake pieces of litter as food, and can suffer from digestive blockage or poisoning. Also, oil or grease could cause plumage disruption which would affect their ability to maintain proper insulation and easy flight.
Some people may believe that cleaning up the litter is an endless battle and that their effort really wouldn’t make a difference. However, just as every piece of litter that is carelessly discarded matters, the same goes for every piece of litter that is eliminated.
The Antelope Island clean-up focused on an area where shooters have been using discarded toys and electronic devices for target practice. Most electronics contain toxic materials including lead, nickel, zinc, and chromium. When released into the environment it can cause health problems to humans. Toxic materials can also seep into the groundwater affecting animals on land and in water.
The use of ammunition containing lead is discouraged. Accumulation of lead from ammunition on the lakebed will have a health impact on waterfowl.
Collected litter was weighed. Metal and toxic debris were separated from the paper, cardboard, plastic bottles and aluminum cans for proper disposal.
Within two hours, the combine efforts of hardworking volunteers were able to clear out 1000 pounds of litter.
“You are not a drop in the ocean. You are an entire ocean in a drop.” – Rumi
Festivities to educate, explore, restore, and enjoy the Jordan River and Jordan River Parkway are scheduled throughout the month of September during the annual “Get into the River Festival”. The Jordan River flows for fifty miles through sixteen cities in three counties.
Cities along the river are hosting events such as a Pancake Breakfast/ Puncturevines Pull, canoe and kayak float, riding the river trail with the Mayor, and a Children’s Beatles Tribute Choir. Although some of these activities have already taken place, there are many more fun events still to come. Check the schedule for information on activities.
There are additional opportunities scheduled for later this month to learn about the flora and fauna; plant trees and seeds, bird watch, listen to live music, play lawn games, mud volley ball, Ducky Derby Dash or enjoy a root beer float.
Each month, approximately 15,000 people utilize the Jordan River Parkway each month for walking, running, skating, cycling and horseback riding.
Although the festival events are scheduled only during September, the Jordan River and trails are enjoyable year round.
If volunteering as an individual or with a group to help with planting, weed pulling, or picking up trash to help maintain the Jordan River is of interest to you, (typically needed between April and October) check with Jordan River Commission for upcoming opportunities.
From boats, trains, races, mazes and more there are lots of options for celebrating fall and Halloween. It isn’t too early to purchase tickets or to schedule these events in your calendar.
Listen to the captain tell a scary story as you ride a riverboat down the Provo River as you pass over a hundred hand-carved jack-o-lanterns. Boat ride is approximately 20 minutes long.
Take a 40 minute ride on the pumpkin train and be entertained by costumed characters.
Always wanted to run in a race, but don’t like to run? West Haven has a 0.5 K lazy man’s race on October 13, 2018. Dress in costume to enter for a prize.
A Headless Horseman begins the race at Sugarhouse Park to Emigration Canyon for a 13.13 mile challenge on October 20, 2018. There will be a costume contest as well.
Dozens of giant pumpkins weighing in at hundreds, or even a thousand pounds will set sail for a race on the North Shore of Oquirrh Lake in South Jordan on October 20, 2018. Family activities and food trucks will be available.
Visit the Corn Maze, Pumpkin Patch Hayrides, Nightmare Acres and Farmers Market in Syracuse. Season opens on September 21, 2018.
Take a moonlit hayride through the haunted 156 year old barnyard in Pleasant Grove. Halloween attraction is available on Monday, Friday and Saturdays during October.
There are several maze options available. The Greatest Maze on Earth is a circus-theme maze through 8 acres of pathways. Interactive games are placed throughout the maze to challenge you. Ride a grain train through the Candy Corn Acres Maze and see scarecrow and jack-o-lantern scenes along the way. The Kiddie Maze offers the youngest maze explorers a 5 minute challenge to conquer. The Haunted Insanity Point Maze has animatronics, live spooks and surprises lurking in the corn. Be prepared to be scared.
Attractions include Corn Maze, Scarecrow Walk, Haunted River Trail, Giant Straw Fort, and Spooky Barn Ride.
Explore the Pumpkin Pirate Cove, Maravilla Lane, Pumpkin Reef, Spider Alley, Forbidden Pumpkin City, Great Pumpkin Hall, Monster Mash and Pumpkin Passage and see over 3,000 hand-carved pumpkins at the Utah State Fairpark. Be entertained by pumpkin artists, performers, and fire dancers.
Animal and magician show, haunted house, crafts, games, and Trick or Treat Street. October 27, 2018.
A 45-day celebration of witches including Breakfast with a witch, a Witches 5K Run/Walk, Six Hags Witches Adventure, Witch in the Kitchen cooking and much more. See link for schedule of events.
Lighted displays at the zoo, take a train ride at night, explore a labyrinth-themed maze with puppets, and see ‘Spiderella’.
Wear your Halloween costumes to This Is the Place Heritage Park to go trick-or-treating, visit the story telling witch, take a train ride, pony ride and make take-home crafts. (October 13, 18, 19, 20 & 27th).
Light displays, games and crafts. (October 18, 19, 20, 25, 26, and 27th)
The performances include Thriller, The Curse of the Mummy, Dem Bones, Frankenstein, Jason Jam, Salem’s Mass, The Lost Boys, The River of Blood Dance and more.
Cascade Springs, accessed from the Alpine Scenic Loop drive, offers an easy stroll alongside of cascading springs through limestone terraces. The lower trail at Cascade Springs is wheel chair accessible; the paved paths, wooden bridges and raised boardwalks make it easy to navigate with strollers, young children or anyone with limited abilities. The higher trail does include stairs which may hinder access to some. There are three interconnected trail loops; each would take approximately 15 minutes to walk.
It is a beautiful nature walk with a diverse ecosystem and interpretive signs identify some of the species of plants, trees and wildlife in the area. Take a seat on one of the benches and take in the sound of the water flowing. Over seven million gallons of water flow through the springs each day. The pools contain trout and you may see them swimming among the reeds, but fishing is not permitted. A variety of birds and mammals may be spotted, including songbirds, hawks, wild turkeys, beavers, deer and moose.
To see an abundance of flowers it is best to visit Cascade Springs between June and September. Fall colors from Aspen, Oak and Maple trees are best seen during September and October. The road to the trail will be closed during winter months due to snow.
How to get there:
Take the Highland/Alpine exit (Exit 284) from I-15. Travel east on State Route 92 to the Forest Service entrance station (approximately 8 miles). Cascade Springs is part of the Uinta National Forest and a fee is required to park in the American Fork Canyon. At the present time, a three day pass is $6. Weekly or annual passes are also available. They also accept the America the Beautiful Interagency Parks Pass.
Continue up American Fork Canyon on SR-92 (Alpine Loop Scenic Byway) for approximately 17 miles until you reach the Cascade Scenic Drive. The road to Cascade Springs goes left after you reach the summit. The Alpine Scenic Loop road is very narrow with switch backs that are very tight. Parking is available at the upper and lower trailheads.
Restrooms and drinking water is available. Dogs on leashes are permitted.
The Living Room Hiking Trail offers a short, but challenging hike for beautiful views overlooking Salt Lake City. The trail is approximately 2.5 miles roundtrip. The elevation at the start of the trailhead is 5,000 feet with an elevation gain of 967 feet. Dogs are permitted on this trail.
How to get there
From Foothill Drive, turn right onto Wakara Way and then right on to Colorow Road. The trailhead is on the east side of the street. Parking is available on both sides of the street.
Trailhead coordinates: 40.759301, – 111.8211300
Living Room coordinates: 40.763196, – 111.811905
The start of the trail offers some shade, but most of the trail does not. Be prepared to bring a hat, protection from the sun and plenty of water. I also recommend using hiking poles, not only because it is easier on your joints when you are walking; but they can also be used as a splint or crutches in an emergency.
There are multiple hiking and biking trails that split off which can be confusing for some people who are looking for the Living Room Trail. When you see the pipeline marker 174, you are heading towards George’s Hollow be sure to continue east (towards the mountain). When you reach the wooden post (photo is taken facing west) you will see two paths. Take the path on the right and continue heading east.
The trail varies from dirt, gravel to rocky areas.
The Living Room is a great spot to relax, eat a snack and take in the view of the city.
At this point, most people make the return trip back. However, if you would like a longer adventure there are many other trails to explore.
You may want to consider beginning your hike an hour before sunset for a stunning view. Be sure to bring a headlamp or flashlight if you will be hiking down after sunset. You may want to hike the trail during different seasons for a great display of wildflowers or fall colors.
From flag raisings, breakfasts, races, parades, games, entertainment and fireworks there are plenty of activities to celebrate from dawn through dark on the 4th of July in and around Salt Lake County. Here are some of them. If you know of any others, please add them in the comment section.
Jordan Park – 1060 South 900 West, Salt Lake City. Fireworks beginning at 10:00 pm at the North end of the park.
Magna Copper Park – 8950 W 2600 S, Magna, UT, Flag Ceremony at 7:00 am, Lions Club Breakfast from 7:00 am–11:00 am. 5K Fun Run at 7:30 am. Watch the parade at noon on Main Street and return to Magna Copper Park for games and inflatables from 2:30 to 10:00 pm. Music from 8:00 pm to 10:00 pm, and fireworks beginning at 10:00 pm.
Riverton – 12830 South 1700 West, Riverton, Utah. July 4, Bike and running races, 10K, 5K, 1-Mile, and the Tour De Riverton bike race. Chuck Wagon Breakfast from 7 am to 10 am. Games, food and activities at the Riverton City Park throughout the day. Fireworks begin at 10:00 pm.
Sandy City Hall – 10000 S. Centennial Parkway, Sandy. Flag Raising and National Anthem at 6:50 am followed by a 5K. Games, inflatables, crafts, food, and entertainment from 10 am to 10 pm. Fireworks Sky Concert at 10:00 pm.
South Salt Lake Freedom Festival –Wednesday, July 4, the day kicks off with the 5K/Fun Run at 8 am. At 9:30 am the Parade will make its way to Fitts Park, 3050 South 500 East, South Salt Lake; where the Freedom Festival will run from 11:00 am to 2:00 pm.
Thanksgiving Point’s Electric Park, Wednesday, July 4 from 4:00 pm to Midnight at 3003 Thanksgiving Way, Lehi, Utah. Music, games, prizes, concessions and vendors. Fireworks start at 10:00 pm.
West Jordan – 8000 S. Redwood Road, West Jordan, Utah. Watch the Grand Parade as it makes its way from City Hall to 7000 South from 10:30 am to noon. Carnival and park activities including entertainment stage at the Veterans Memorial Park at 8030 S 1825 W from noon to 11:00 pm. Fireworks start at 10:15 pm.
If you have pets – it is best to plan to leave your pet at home. Fireworks can be very frightening to animals and cause them to run away. Be sure that their micro chip has been updated with current contact information in the event they do become lost. Be sure to check your yard and other areas where they walk or play for leftover fireworks debris, which can be dangerous if your pet plays or tries to eat it.
Whether the Wasatch Front is where you live or if you are planning a visit, there are plenty of activities going on in and around Salt Lake City that are fun and free or low cost to participate in.
This is the Place Heritage Park 2601 E Sunnyside Ave, Salt Lake City, UT 84108. Hours are from 10 am to 5 pm. There are over 50 historic homes and buildings to visit. On Huntsman Day, (scheduled on June 15th this year) admission is free for everyone thanks to a grant from the Huntsman family. What could be better than free admission? How about a free ice cream cone?
Salt Lake Gallery Stroll Do you appreciate viewing Art? Would you enjoy speaking with the artists? The Gallery Stroll is scheduled on the 3rd Friday of every month; except for in December, when it is held on the 1st Friday of the month. Here is the list for June’s Gallery Stroll. It is a free event.
Cool Air Concert Series Plaza Deck, Snowbird Center 9385 S Snowbird Center Dr. Snowbird, Utah 84092. Bring your lawn chairs and coolers for a free concert every Saturday beginning June 16 through August 11 and enjoy a free concert with local and national bands.
Mondays in the Park in front of the Chase Home Museum in Liberty Park 600 East 900 South, Salt Lake City, UT 84105. Listen to folk and ethnic music and dance on selected Monday evenings during July and August. Pack a picnic, blankets or lawnchairs to enjoy the free performances.
International Peace Gardens 1060 S 900 W (Inside Jordan Park). The cultural diversity of 28 nations represented through native plantings and garden architecture. Open year round, free.
Wheeler Historic Farm 6351 South 900 East, Murray, UT. Visit this 19th century working farm for free, year round. Walk through the 40 acres of woods. There are fees for wagon rides, milking the cows and special events.
See free screening of dramatic, documentary, and independent films at venues including the Salt Lake City Library, Rose Wagner Performing Arts Center, Utah Museum of Fine Arts and other locations throughout the state. See the Utah Film Center’s schedule for upcoming films.
Children can get a ZAP summer passport at the Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County or Murray city libraries for free and discounted destinations to enjoy throughout the summer.
The Jordan River Parkway is an urban park with a network of non-motorized trails that runs along the Jordan River. The Jordan River flows north from Utah Lake to the Great Salt Lake wetlands, through Utah, Salt Lake and Davis counties. The concept for the Jordan River Parkway was developed in the 1970’s to address flood-control, but also included opportunities for recreational use.
The mixed-use trail is used by bicyclists, runners, skaters and walkers. There is also a separate equestrian trail. Dogs are permitted on-leash. Picnic areas as well as playgrounds can be found at various points along the trail. With the beautiful backdrop, it is not unusual to come across artists sketching or painting the scenery. Whether you prefer early morning, day time, or evening use, it is a perfect way to relax in nature without leaving the city. There is no charge for day use or parking.
For some people, the Jordan River Parkway is a perfect place to relax and catch dinner. If you are fishing in the Jordan River, be sure to follow the general statewide regulations.
Hundreds of species of plants and animals can be found along the Jordan River Parkway’s ecosystem. It is the perfect place for birding. These are some of the birds that can be commonly found at the Jordan River Parkway. In addition, you may see a variety of reptiles, amphibians and mammals.
In November, 2017 a 120-foot arch bridge over rail yards was completed to enable existing trails to be connected, providing more than 100 miles of continuous off-street paved trail for bikers and other outdoor enthusiasts. It doesn’t matter at what point you enter the trail, or the path that you take, you are sure to find a fun time.
As you walk through the gate at the Provo Pioneer Village, you will be greeted by friendly docents wearing period costumes, who will take you on a tour traveling back in time to how the early pioneer settlers lived, worked and played. The village includes artifacts and original structures built by these pioneers dating back to 1849. The homes were tiny when compared to modern standards, but were filled with essentials to survive harsh conditions using their skills and grit.
Other structures to tour include a one room schoolhouse, blacksmith shop, wood shop, ox shoeing stock, granary, corn crib and more. While visiting the General Store, you can purchase pioneer souvenirs or a treat to eat.
Although some of the exhibits are roped off to preserve fragile artifacts, there are several hands on experiences for the children. Be sure to pick up the scavenger hunt sheet as you begin the tour to ensure that you understand what each item is and how it was used. A trunk full of clothes is available for children to dress up for selfies, and they can experience the games pioneer children played, including the climbing bear, ring toss, and hoop and stick game. They can also test their balance using short stilts.
This Saturday, June 9th from 10 am to 2 pm, the Provo Pioneer Village will have a Craft Fair with demonstrations by Carpenters, Wheelwrights, Blacksmiths, Spinners, Weavers, Musicians, Rope makers and others. For information on additional scheduled demonstrations and activities, check their calendar of events.
There is no charge for admission, but donations are greatly appreciated. Although there are posted Hours , it may be possible to schedule a visit for special occasions or large groups at a time outside of their posted schedule. The Provo Pioneer Village is 600 North 500 West in Provo, Utah.