Utah February 05, 2017
The Day Trip Of A Lifetime You Can Only Take In Utah
We’re so incredibly lucky to live in Utah. It seems as though we have the most stunning scenery and exciting attractions pretty much around every corner. If you’re feeling bored with winter, hop in the car for this fun day trip, which takes you to a historic site, a migratory bird refuge and a magnificent work of art. Does it get any better than this?
You'll want to allow an entire day for this fun trip.
The drive time from the Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge to in 1 hour 52 minutes, which doesn't account for time spent exploring each place. Also, you'll obviously want to allow time to travel from your home to the Brigham City area.
Start at the Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge.
Take the 12-mile auto tour, which is open every day during daylight hours. Stop by the James V. Hansen Wildlife Education Center to learn more about the wildlife in the refuge, and view the film
Wings of Thunder. The center is open Tuesday through Friday 8:00 am to 5:00 pm; Saturday 10:00 am to 4:00 pm; closed on Sunday, Monday and Federal holidays.
If the weather is warm enough, you may see tundra swan, which often hang out at the refuge during the winter.
They'll take off for Mexico if the weather gets too cold.
American white pelicans show up in March.
It's highly entertaining to watch these guys fish for their dinners.
American bald eagles call the bird refuge home in late February/early March.
Some years, the refuge is just full of bald eagles! The highest number ever reported in one day was on March 8, 1992, when 181 bald eagles were counted.
Your next stop is the Golden Spike National Historic Site.
This historic site is home to two engines: The Jupiter and the No. 119.
"The last rail is laid, the spike is driven." On May 10, 1869 the first transcontinental railroad in the country was officially completed.
Stop by the Visitor Center to learn more about this fascinating part of history.
It's open every day from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm.
The Visitor Center has lots of artifacts and information about the people who built the Transcontinental Railroad.
You can also see a replica of the Golden Spike.
The actual ceremonial Golden Spike is at the Cantor Arts Center at Stanford University.
You may be able to tour the Engine House
Tour times vary by season and days of the week. To find out if an Engine House tour will be available during your planned visit, call the Visitor Center at 435-471-2209 x29.
Take the two mile-long East Auto Tour, where you'll drive along the original railroad grade.
This photo shows the passageway cut right through the stone to allow the railroad tracks to continue on.
Chinese Arch was named to honor the many Chinese people who worked to complete the Transcontinental Railroad.
The arch was created by nature - the ancient Lake Bonneville's waves carved this arch out of the rocks. It was given its name to recognize the strength and stamina of the Chinese workers.
Your final destination is Spiral Jetty.
This land sculpture was completed by Robert Smithson in April, 1970. It's 1,500 feet long and 15 feet wide. You can get a feel for its overall size from this photo.
The jetty never looks the same from day to day. The amount of water (or lack of it), the time of day and the weather all create different views of this magnificent piece of land art.
Make sure to bring your camera! Also, if you want to walk out and trace the spiral on foot, bring some warm, waterproof boots to keep your toes dry and warm.
Have you visited these places? Tell us what you thought of your trip!
Interested in a longer road trip? Take this
Natural Wonders Road Trip, which leads you through several of Utah’s state and national parks.