Archive for the ‘Utah Scenes’ Category

From Mining to Ghosts – More Unique Places To Visit in Utah

July 29th, 2013 by BBIU

Central Utah south of the current I-70 is known for it’s quiet alpine forests, high-peaked mountains, odd-colored volcanic rock, and quaint pioneer towns. But history has shown that the area has had numerous periods of mining activity – specifically for GOLD and SILVER. Evidence goes back to the Spanish who were exploring Utah long before any “American” began to visit the area. Most remnants have been destroyed by weather or other force, but numerous remains can still be found. Most of these are in “ghost towns”, some of which are fairly well preserved.Canyon of Gold tour. Bullion City Ghost Town, UT

Bullion City, on the east side of the Tushar Range (third highest in Utah) in the Fishlake National Forest is one such town. In the late 1800’s – gold & silver were found in Bulllion Canyon about 5 miles from Marysvale, UT south of I-70 on Historic US 89. By 1868, the Ohio Mining District was formed, it’s largest mining camp being named Bullion City. Though the population decreased as the veins were mined out, the town was continuously occupied until about 1938, when the Bully Boy Mine closed. Some 50 buildings remain, including the stamp mill, saloons, gambling hall, and boarding house and can be toured on the self-guided “Canyon of Gold” driving tour.

Frisco – another Utah Ghost Town (Much of the following information is from Legends of America.)
Not too far to the west of The Bullion City area is another area famed for it’s rich ore…this time SILVER. Fifteen miles to the west of Milford, UT, west of I-15, lie the San Francisco Mountains, a 20-kile long range which rises from the desert. In 1875 two prospectors found a rock outcropping that turned out to be solid ore. Fearing that the mineral body was not very large, they sold their claim. Unfortunately for them, by the end of the 1870’s it had produced 20,000 plus tons of very high grade silver. Nearby, the town of Frisco sprang up. As other mines became large producers, the Frisco Mining and Smelting Company expanded, constructing a smelter and 5 “beehive” charcoal kilns. As the town grew it even became the last stop of the Utah Southern Railroad extension from Milford. Though there were numerous other mining towns around, Frisco became known as the wildest. With many saloons, gambling halls and brothels, and a population of close to 6000, vice and crime were common in town. City officials finally hired a lawman from Nevada who stated that he would not build new jails or make arrests. He told the trouble-makers that they could leave town or be shot. After shooting several outlaws the first day, most just left town, and Frisco became a much quieter place.
Early in 1885, a large cave-in occurred. The cause was said to be inadequately supported tunnels in the mine. No one was lost in the cave-in, but it closed off access to the richest part of the mine. The mine began to produce again within a year, but never reached the level of production it had in the past, leading to the decline in the town. The activity in town continued to decrease, and by about 1912, the population was down to 150 people and the number of businesses was down to only 12. By the 1920’s Frisco had become a Ghost Town.

Charcoal kilns, remains in Frisco, UT, Ghost Town

Frisco charcoal kilns provided by Beaver County Travel

However, In 1982. Frisco’s charcoal kilns were placed on National Register of Historic Places and visitors are able to view the remnants of the once-infamous town.  In addition to the kilns, many of the old building still stand, and mining equipment as well as the cemetery can be seen. Open mine entrances are common. Use extreme caution around these areas.
Frisco, Utah, is just off route 21, 15 miles west of Milford.

Though The Bed and Breakfast Inns of Utah has no member inns in immediate area, most visitors find that they can stay at either a Salt Lake Metro area inn or one in Cedar City, or the St. George area. A visit to either of the ghost towns is a great stop when travelling down I-15 between the two areas. OR visit one of the towns on the way to Panguitch, and the Bryce Canyon/ Scenic Highway 12 area. Remember to ask the innkeepers for their own favorite hidden spots.

Off the Beaten Path – Salt Lake Metro

July 19th, 2013 by BBIU

Looking for a respite from the hustle and bustle of the Salt Lake Metro area? Try this “a-bit-off-the-beaten-path” trip.

Map to Cascade Springs, off Alpine Scenic Backway, UTThe Alpine Loop Scenic Backway (Highway 92) is a 20-mile trip along the base of Mt. Timpanogos (west of the Heber Valley). The route is reached from the west through American Fork Canyon (1-15 exit at Alpine) or from The Provo Canyon Highway (#189) to the south. The Backway goes through part of the Uintah-Wasatch Nat’l Forest with twists and turns through groves of tall aspens and views of 11,750 foot high peaks of “Mt. Timp”.  Along the away, visitors can stop for a tour at the Timpanogos Cave National Monument.  Lunch and a hike or bike ride at nearby Sundance Resort, and a visit to Stewart Falls within the resort, makes a great day.

Near the summit of the Backway, veer down the mountain to an especially lush spot – Cascade SpringsCascade Springs Uinta National Forest 2Water bubbles up through limestone from deep caverns. The water then cascades down a series of mineral terraces where wildflowers, cattails, watercress, maples, oaks, willows are abundant. Brown trout find a safe home here, too, as there is no fishing allowed. More than 7 million gallons of water seep through the ground each day, eventually flowing down to the Provo Deer Creek. A series of pathways and small bridges allow visitors a choice of shorter or longer loop walks through the site.  A 7-mile long dirt road from Cascade Springs east into Midway in the Heber Valley is an optional exit route.

bridge over pools and terraces at cascade Springs, UT

Cascade Springs terraces and pools

Several options are available for lodging for this trip.  Stay in a Salt Lake Metro member of the Bed and Breakfast Inns of Utah. Or if you choose to begin or end the visit in the Heber Valley, any “Wasatch Back”  member Inn is a great option.  The innkeepers are always a great source of terrific information and often will share their own favorite “hidden ” spots.


Off The Beaten Path in Northern Utah

July 12th, 2013 by BBIU

Utah is well-known for its red rocks, snow capped mountains, and iconic scenery. In most areas of the state, visitors will also find a few little-known, little-visited areas that are often as interesting as any other. Northern Utah is no exception.

Chinese Arch in Golden Spike National Historic Site, Utah.

Chinese Arch in Golden Spike NHS

In the Golden Spike National Historic Site (32 miles west of Brigham City via. Utah Hwy 83), visitors will see where the Union And Central Pacific Railroads joined their rails to complete a transcontinental rail system. One of the park tours includes a drive along the East Grade the Union Pacific built with 4 trestles and 4 fills to allow for rail construction. In an otherwise featureless landscape stands a unique formation. The 20 foot limestone Chinese Arch is named in honor of the Chinese railroad workers who were so important to the construction of the rail system.

Spiral Jetty in teh Great Salt LAke, south of Golden Spike NHS

Spiral Jetty

When visiting Golden Spike NHS, a more modern, but no less unique place to visit is the Spiral Jetty. The Jetty is reached by traveling about 15.5 miles southwest of Golden Spike on dirt roads. The Spiral Jetty is an “earthwork” by American sculptor Robert Smithson in 1970. Built of mud, precipitated salt crystals, and basalt rocks, the spiral is 1500 feet long and 15 feet wide. The structure is not always visible if lake levels are high.

In a very remote region of north western Utah lie the Sun Tunnels. explains:
“Nancy Holt, an artist exploring the human perception of time and space, earth and sky, built the Sun Tunnels as a unique art project completed in 1976. The four tunnels are concrete tubes laid out in an X shape, each drilled with holes to pattern the constellations of Draco, Perseus, Columbia, and Capricorn. They are massive – nine feet high by 18 feet long. They sit in a remote valley in the Great Basin Desert, west of the Bonneville Salt Flats.”

Sun Tunnels, a  sculptural installation in Utah's remote west desert

Sun Tunnels

Located near the Utah/Nevada line about 45 miles north of Wendover. The road is paved for the first few miles then turns to gravel, then dirt. The Great Basin desert is uniquely beautiful in this area, with rolling hills and distant mountains, and cattle grazing in open rangeland. Plan your visit so you can see both sunrise and sunset, or visit during a solstice, when you will probably find other visitors.
Photos are provided by Alan Smith of Box Elder County Tourism
Thought the Bed and Breakfast Inns of Utah has no member inns in the immediate area of these sights, guests often use a Salt Lake City inn as a base for these adventures. Also close are inns in Providence (Logan), Eden and Huntsville. The innkeepers are a great source of information about any of these, or other “out of the way” places to visit.

Utah’s National Parks – The Mighty 5 Fee-Free Days

April 21st, 2013 by BBIU

The Utah Office of Tourism recently rolled out it’s Summer Campaign focusing on “The Mighty 5” – the FIVE National Parks that are located within Utah’s borders. They are Arches and Canyonlands National Parks, in the southeastern part of Utah near Moab. Capitol Reef National Park, in the south central region near Torrey. And Zion and Bryce Canyons National Parks, in the southwestern area of the state. Nearby cities include, St. George, Springdale and Rockville, and Cedar City.Bryce Sunset

This week, April 22-26, 2013 is National Park Week, and one of several FREE entry days provided throughout the year.
The next fee-free day is the National Park Service (NPS) Birthday, August 25, 2013; then National Public Lands Day, September 28, 2013; and finally Veterans Day Weekend, November 9-11, 2013.

For those who are not able to visit on fee-free days, consider the $80 Annual Pass. Especially if you are planning to visit to several parks or monuments in one trip, this is a great deal. The pass allows access to all national parks and monuments, national wildlife refuges, national forests, national historic sites, and many other Federal lands – more than 2000 in number.
Seniors, those who are U S Citizens and are age 62 and over, can purchase the Senior “lifetime” pass for $10. This pass provides access to all of the areas mentioned above and may provide a discount on some fees charged for some amenities and services, such as swimming, boating, and so forth.
There is also a free Annul Pass available to U.S. military members and dependents in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines and Coast Guard and also, Reserve and National Guard members.

The iconography of timeA recent National Park Service report notes that in 2011, Utah’s five National Parks totaled nearly 9.3 million in visitors.
Many of these visitors have discovered the Members Inns of the Bed and Breakfast Inns of Utah. In addition to being located close to the Parks, the innkeepers are a great source of information about the Parks. They are also often willing to share their own favorite viewing spots, scenic drives or hikes, and little-known areas to visit. A “locals view” is often the best!

Zion National Park Shuttle Available for 2013 Season

April 13th, 2013 by BBIU

Zion National Park in southwestern Utah has “opened for the season”.

One of the many scenic views in Zion National Park

A scenic stop in Zion National Park

From March 24, 2013 through November 3, 2013 access to the Zion Canyon Scenic Drive will be by shuttle bus only. The Zion Shuttle is now running with stops at most of the favorite visitor spots. Leaving from the visitor center, just inside the gates of the Park, the shuttle’s first stop is the Zion Human History Museum. Then it is on to the Canyon Junction, The Zion Lodge, The Grotto, Weeping Rock, and the Temple of Sinawava – the gateway to The Narrows. At every stop, there are opportunities for Ranger-led programs, hikes, and specular views. Visitors may get on and off as often as they like, and the shuttle is free.

Check the shuttle schedule, and the Zion map and guide for details.
When visiting Zion National Park, one of “Utah’s Mighty 5“, choose from several b & b’s that are members of the Bed and Breakfast Inns of Utah. Just outside of the Park’s West gates in Springdale are the Under the Eaves Inn at Zion National Park, The Harvest House Bed and Breakfast, Zion Canyon Bed and Breakfast, The Novel House at Zion, the Canyon Vista Lodge, and the Red Rock Inn. Just a few miles to the west is the quaint town of Rockville, and the BunkHouse at Zion and Desert Thistle Bed and Breakfast inns. Visit like a local…Ask the innkeeper at any of these inns for their favorite spots within the park.Zion National Park

Wildflowers in Utah

April 6th, 2013 by BBIU

Though Spring is typically the best time to see wildflowers, Utah’s display can be summer-long. Often the best viewing is in mountain meadows and along rural highway fence lines. OR, as many Utah bed and breakfast inns have discovered, wildflower gardens are often a solution to having beautiful gardens in Utah’s arid climate.

wildflowers add a colorful touch to a traditional garden

Wildflowers in a lush garden

Some great places to see wildflowers:

Summer in the Albion Basin at Alta Ski area

Albion Basin Wildflowers

Albion Basin at the Alta Ski Resort, at the top of Little Cottonwood Canyon, is just east of Salt Lake City. Late July is really the best viewing time.
Along the Mirror Lake Highway #150 east of Kamas. If you are lucky, you may see a moose.
Along the roads and pathways in and around the FIVE National Parks located in Southern Utah.

Wildflowers along Highway #191 between Blanding & Bluff

Roadside Wildflowers in Southern Utah


Whether surrounded by lush garden greenery or among rocks in the high mountain desert, utah’s wildflowers are not to be missed. When visiting a Bed and Breakfast Inns of Utah (BBIU) member inn, ask the innkeeper for information on their favorite wildflower viewing spot.


A Spring Visit in Historic Downtown Logan

March 27th, 2013 by BBIU

More signs of springThis Spring may be a perfect time to visit Historic Downtown Logan, UT. Spring flowers will be blooming soon and the tree lined streets will frame the historic buildings. Turn-of-the-century homes, churches, and store building fill the Historic Downtown and the surrounding blocks. The Logan Tabernacle is a showcase of classic Mormon pioneer architecture. The iconic Bluebird Cafe is a must-see, as is the newly restored Cache County Courthouse. And a walk down Center Street features elegant nineteenth- century mansions.
Within the Historic Downtown are antiques shops; clothing, gift and collectible shops, and a variety of unique eateries. Stop at the Cache Valley Visitors Bureau, located in the Historic Cache County Courthouse, at 199 North Main St. Pick up a walking tour guide, or one of the numerous brochures available to help you fully enjoy Springtime in Cache County.
And no trip to Logan can be complete without a drive through the beautiful campus of the Utah State University, “on the hill” overlooking the downtown and across the pastoral Cache Valley.
Within walking distance of Logan’s Main Street is the Riter Mansion B & B, and in nearby Providence is the Old Rock Church Bed and Breakfast (formerly called The Providence Inn). Innkeepers at both inns are a wealth of information on the area and a great source of tips for how to navigate the area like a “local”.

Utah Scenery – a Glimpse

March 2nd, 2013 by BBIU

Canyonlands Maze District taken as seen from the Wall Campsite

When seeking tranquility and backcountry solitude, a visitor to Utah will not be disappointed with a trip into Canyonlands National Park. The Park is divided into three sections by the rivers, which are features in themselves. The Sky, Needles, and Maze Districts are each primitive desert lands, but each have different opportunities for adventure. This image is taken from the Wall Campground in the Maze District and may be reached by back-country vehicle .


Landscape Arch in Arches National Park, Moab, UTLandscape Arch, at 290 feet long, is known as the longest natural arch in the world. It is located in the Devils’ Garden area of Arches National Park, just 5 miles north of Moab. The trailhead for Landscape Arch is about 16 miles from the park entry. From the parking lot, it is a one-mile hike to the arch.

The thinnest section of Landscape Arch is just 6 feet thick. Since 1991, three slabs of sandstone measuring 30, 47, and 70 feet long have fallen from the thinnest section the arch, closing the trail that had run under the span. Of any of the several thousand arches within and near the park, Landscape Arch is one not to miss. For who knows? it may not be gone today, next week, next year, or it may stand for hundreds more years.

PIctures are provided by Jim Traeber and The Cali Cochitta Bed & Breakfast in Moab, a Member Inn of The Bed and Breakfast Inns of Utah.

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