Foothill Sunset

I went for a hike last night to celebrate being out from under whatever virus made me more or less sick for most of the last month. The foothill wildflowers are more subdued than the ones that will cover the big mountains in July and August. Four mountain ranges and the Great Salt Lake. Looking… Continue reading Foothill Sunset

Labyrinth Rims

The Green River’s Labyrinth Canyon begins south of the town of Green River UT; the Labyrinth Rims refers to the area of BLM land on either side of this canyon. We spent four days in this somewhat isolated area of the San Rafael Desert without seeing any other people except for a group in the… Continue reading Labyrinth Rims

Around Zion National Park

Zion NP makes a great destination for a quick weekend trip in winter (and not just for people living nearby—Zion is only about a 2.5 hour drive from Las Vegas). Since the main canyon is 800 m deep, some parts of it don’t get much sun in winter. On the other hand, the east side… Continue reading Around Zion National Park

Spiral Jetty

Smithson’s Spiral Jetty is often totally submerged, or else high and dry as it was when I last saw it. Today a favorable lake level as well as warm weather and a feeling of having spent maybe one too many days around the house motivated us to take a day trip. The hazy air and calm water… Continue reading Spiral Jetty

Around Hanksville Utah

Last weekend Sarah had a work trip so the boys and I spent a few days in the desert. The area around Hanksville–a tiny town right in the middle of Utah’s southeast quadrant that got electricity only in 1960–contains a lot of stuff I hadn’t seen yet, so we operated out of a motel there.… Continue reading Around Hanksville Utah

Capitol Reef Rock Art

Last weekend we spent a day poking around Pleasant Creek Canyon in Capitol Reef National Park, which contains a permanent stream and a lot of rock art. The art was left by the Fremont people, who lived in the area until about 700 years ago; it isn’t clear why they left (or died out) but… Continue reading Capitol Reef Rock Art

A Utah Salmon Run

Although it is apparently well-known, I only recently learned that several streams leading to reservoirs in Utah have salmon runs. I hadn’t even realized that salmon could spend their entire lives in fresh water. The kokanee salmon were introduced early in the 20th century and have thrived. Last Saturday, Sarah was out of town and the… Continue reading A Utah Salmon Run

Trilobite Day Trip

A great thing about kids is they provide an excuse to read a book aloud, make popsicles, spend an afternoon skipping rocks, or hike up a random mountainside to look for fossils. So when Ben—a fountain of knowledge about remote and little-known Utah attractions—recently posted about visiting a trilobite-bearing outcrop of Spence shale in the… Continue reading Trilobite Day Trip

Utah Eye Candy

There are several reasons that I sometimes post outdoor pictures here. First, I like pretty things and hope that other people do as well. Second, it seems reasonable to break up an otherwise monotonous flow of picture-free text about undefined behavior and compiler bugs. Third, I’m not above doing a bit of not-subtle PR work… Continue reading Utah Eye Candy

Anniversary Hike

Sarah and I have been married for 11 years today; we celebrated by going hiking with the kids up at Alta, where our wedding was. Unfortunately, after a couple of hours of great conditions, a cold rain storm reminded us that weather in the mountains can be serious. At least there was no lightning! We… Continue reading Anniversary Hike