Home to five national parks, known as The Mighty 5, 44 state parks, seven national monuments and two national recreation areas, Utah can certainly boast to having an extensive amount of natural wonders.
Echo State Park is the newest addition to Utah’s long list of parks, it is located between the communities of Echo and Coalville, 45 minutes from Salt Lake City. It encompasses the Echo Reservoir, and offers both water and land-based activities to visitors – power boats, jet-skis, kayaks, paddleboards and mountain bikes are all offered at The Echo Marina, visitors can also camp onsite in the park.
Utah also has the only race on the planet to utilize and start from one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World. The Grand to Grand Ultra is an annual ultramarathon which begins at the Grand Canyon North Rim and climbs the summit of the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument. The race takes place in September, drawing competitors and spectators from around the world.
This does not even scratch the surface of what Utah has to offer though, the state has an even longer list of adventures and activities that are an absolute must for anyone visiting Salt Lake City and the surrounding areas.
Here are five must-do adventures within 60 minutes of Salt Lake City (SLC):
Hiking the High Uintas – 45 min. from SLC
Gain a little perspective in the High Uintas – Utah’s highest mountain range – accessed from Kamas, Utah, 45 minutes from Salt Lake City. The High Uintas backcountry has long been a favourite for backpackers, anglers and equestrians. There is a lot of wilderness to go around, and visitors should have little trouble finding a lake to call home for a few days.
ATVing in Wasatch Mountain State Park – 48 min. from SLC
Lofty Peaks Adventures maximizes each rider’s time by providing “at the trailhead” ATV rentals, offering the ultimate off-roading adventure by ATV in northern Utah. Lofty Peaks Adventures is the exclusive permit holder for Wasatch Mountain State Park — Utah’s largest state park.
Fly Fish on the Provo River – 60 min. from SLC
The famous Provo River is one of the United State’s top tailwater fisheries. The middle and lower sections of this Blue Ribbon stream offer 24 km of fisherman access, prolific hatches, stunning views of Mount Timpanogos and rich populations of trout.
White Water Rafting the Weber River – 60 min. from SLC
The 8 km float through Weber Canyon starts on a meandering and brief flatwater stretch of river before the first ripples appear. Rock Garden, a class II+ rapid and navigation challenge, appears shortly after. This section gets really big during high water. Following Rock Garden, the entertainment continues with a nice mix of rapids and flatwater stretches, which provide time to take in beautiful views of the surrounding Wasatch Mountains. High Country Adventure offers two-hour and half-day trips throughout the summer.
Mountain Biking in Park City – 40 min. from SLC
Explore over 725 km of Park City trails with a guided mountain biking tour from White Pine Touring. They offer several tours including night riding with only a handlebar or helmet light to guide the way, a five-hour tour that tackles an International Mountain Bike Association (IMBA) Epic Ride like the Wasatch Crest Trail, or the three-hour local tour that is customized to the group’s ability and preferences.
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