Exploring Salt Lake City, Utah

Our journey started almost a year ago and Utah is still one place that we tell everyone not to miss. A few weeks after departing green California, we spent a month walking around red dirt in Southern Utah's "Mighty Five" (Arches, Canyonlands, Capitol Reef, Bryce and Zion National Parks). And here we are, 12 months later, finally trekking back through Utah, this time to explore Northern Utah's Wasatch Mountain Range.

 

Salt Lake City

 

Salt Lake City (SLC): yes, it is a big city and yes, there are quite a few Mormons and yes, the lake is too salty to swim in but its' mountain backdrop is hard to beat. To give you an idea of how great the view is, over 80% of Utahites live within 15 miles of the Wasatch Mountains which run for approximately 160 miles starting at the Utah-Idaho border. The mountains attract adventurous souls which is why we also recommend exploring other (smaller) cities just outside of SLC. Ogden to the North, Provo to the South (home of BYU) and Park City to the East are all great options for outdoor enthusiast vibes without the crowds. Although we did not get to spend time here, we heard great thing about the small town of Logan too which is only about 1.5 hrs NE of SLC.

 

RV Camping:

It was harder than normal to find good options for RV Camping in the area. Maybe we were just a bit spoiled from boondocking in Idaho and Wyoming... In the SLC area there are several very high end RV Resorts, some theme park RV camping options and a what seemed to be a few run down parks close to the lake. We found two decent options for our week in the area. 

  • Pony Express: RV Camping in SLC can be a bit pricey but you pay for the convenience to Salt Lake. This park is bikeable to downtown.
  • Lakeside RV: Located near Provo UT. Cheaper and quieter, nice for exploring southern SLC.  

 

Adventure:

The Wasatch Mountains provide outdoor adventures that are endless. Hiking and biking options could leave you exploring for months. We narrowed it down to our top four adventures, which also include stops at Yoga StudiosFarmers Markets, Breweries* and Distilleries. *Just FYI - Utah's alcohol laws are funky (eg: 1. you might have to order food before they will serve you any amount of alcohol, 2. no free alcohol - don't expect even the smallest free taster at a brewery, 3. The beer on tap will max out at 4%). Funky I know but don't worry, quality is not compromised. Ok adventure time:

 

Hike Lake Blanche

This is a 6 mi, 2700' elevation gain hike in the Wasatch Mountains to two stunning alpine lakes. One of the top Wasatch hikes in the area. Enjoy a pint and maybe some grub at Fisher Brewery on your way back into town. Check their food truck schedule for great grub options. 

 

Hike Malans Peak

This is a 4.8 mi, 2200' elevation hike near Ogden, UT with views of the entire city. Afterwards, check out the Ogden Farmers Market (only on Saturdays) located on their historic 25th Street.

 

Cycle City Creek Canyon

This is a 11.6 miles, 1400' elevation gain cycle through a secluded, winding canyon just minutes from downtown SLC. Make sure to ride on odd numbered days when the road is closed to car traffic. Head to Publik Kitchen on 900 South Street for delicious bfast/lunch options in a fun, popular neighborhood. If you are ready for a stretch, walk across the street to Center City Yoga for yoga with a view! 

 

Hike Iron Mountain

This hike is located in Park City and will lead you up the 2.3mi, 900' elevation gain trail to a beautiful overlook of the surrounding area. Maybe you will even see a moose! Afterwards enjoy a whiskey flight at High West Distillery, the first gastro-distillery in the state since 1870. 

 

 Moose on the hike to  Iron Mountain

Moose on the hike to Iron Mountain