Utah Geography

Utah has a geography that people come from all over the world to visit.  Utah’s geography also provides the foundation for a diverse people and the resources for a vibrant economy. Utah is generally divided into three distinct regions:   the Great Basin Region, the Rocky Mountain Region, and the Colorado Plateau. Among those regions are a large number of National Parks and Monuments. Because Utah is in an arid region of the United States, water will always play a crucial role in its development.  The geography of Utah can be studied through the five themes of geography which are: Location, Place, Region, Movement and Human-Environmental Interaction.

The Great Basin National Heritage Area was designated by Congress in 2006 to recognize its “classic western landscape that contains long natural vistas, isolated high desert valleys, mountain ranges, ranches, mines, historic railroads, archaeological sites and tribal communities.” The recognized Area is made up of two neighboring counties, White Pine in Nevada and Millard in Utah, as representative of the larger geographic Great Basin. The Great Basin National Heritage Partnership was designated at the local coordinating entity for the Area.

Image and Video of Rattlesnake from Great Basin

Great Basin (Western) Rattlesnake Sounds of a Rattlesnake from the Great Basin.

Map of the Territory West of the Rocky Mountains

Map of the Territory West of the Rocky Mountains. The second map included in Washington Irving’s book: The Rocky Mountains; or Scenes, Incidents, and Adventures in the Far West. Later this was called The Adventures of Captain Bonneville. This book together with this map produced by Capt. Bonneville was a result of his expedition, was … Continue reading Map of the Territory West of the Rocky Mountains

Map of Deseret Counties (1850)

Counties existing in Deseret at the end of 1850 are blacked in on the map. The first counties were restricted to inhabited valleys. Iron County between January and December 1850 was called Little Salt Lake County. Davis County was created in October, 1850, out of Weber and Great Salt Lake Counties; the latter originally extended … Continue reading Map of Deseret Counties (1850)

Manti National Forest

The deep sandstone canyons, mountaintops, meadows, lakes, and streams of the Manti-La Sal National Forest create a diverse landscape.  From the Abajos and La Sals in southeastern Utah to the Wasatch Plateau and Sanpitch mountains hundreds of miles away in central Utah, the Forest is a welcome retreat.

The Shortest Route to California

An account of the shortest route to California illustrated by a history of explorations of the Great Basin of Utah with its topographical and geological character and some account of the Indian tribes.

National Park Service Sound Spectrograms

National Park Service scientists record and analyze sounds in national parks to inform and improve management of national parks across the country. The data is collected through recording systems installed by the Natural Sounds and Night Skies Division in selected parks for about a month at a time. The systems record audio as mp3 files … Continue reading National Park Service Sound Spectrograms

View of Mt. Washington

Mount Washington is a mountain in White Pine County in the state of Nevada. The mountain climbs to an elevation of 11,658 feet (3,553 m) and is in Great Basin National Park. Land near the summit and adjoining the national park was purchased in 2001 by The Long Now Foundation as a potential site for the Clock of the Long Now. The announcement … Continue reading View of Mt. Washington

Views of Lehman Cave

Lehman Caves, large, spectacular cavern at Great Basin National Park in eastern Nevada, U.S. The cave lies 5 miles (8 km) west of Baker at the base of the eastern slope of Wheeler Peak (13,063 feet [3,982 meters]) in the Snake Range. It is made of light gray and white limestone that is honeycombed by tunnels and galleries containing a spectacular array … Continue reading Views of Lehman Cave

Map of Great Basin National Heritage Area

The Great Basin National Heritage Area was designated by Congress in 2006 to recognize its “classic western landscape that contains long natural vistas, isolated high desert valleys, mountain ranges, ranches, mines, historic railroads, archaeological sites and tribal communities.” The recognized Area is made up of two neighboring counties, White Pine in Nevada and Millard in … Continue reading Map of Great Basin National Heritage Area

Rocky Mountain Elk

This link contains different information regarding Rocky Mountain Elk, specifically about its antlers, habitat, behavior, and reproduction information.

Audio Tracks of Various Wildlife

Audio track of a Bighorn Sheep (Ram) from Zion National Park. Audio track of Utah Prairie Dog calls.

Uinta Mountains

Uinta Mountains, segment of the south-central Rocky Mountains, extending eastward for more than 100 miles (160 km) from the Wasatch Range across northeastern Utah and slightly into southwestern Wyoming, U.S. Many of the range’s summits exceed 13,000 feet (4,000 m), including Kings Peak (13,528 feet [4,123 m]), the highest point in Utah. The mountains are a headstream region for the Provo, Bear, and Duchesne … Continue reading Uinta Mountains

Map of Northern Utah and Southern Idaho (Bear Lake)

This map is from rare manuscript volume “A Description of the Location, Works and Business of the Bear Lake and River Water Works and Irrigation Co.” (1889) which is also in this digital collection. Printed against a township & range grid, this map shows various rivers and lakes (Great Salt Lake and Bear Lake) in … Continue reading Map of Northern Utah and Southern Idaho (Bear Lake)

Great Salt Lake

Great Salt Lake, lake in northern Utah, U.S., the largest inland body of salt water in the Western Hemisphere and one of the most saline inland bodies of water in the world. The lake is fed by the Bear, Weber, and Jordan rivers and has no outlet. The lake has fluctuated greatly in size, depending on the rates of evaporation and the … Continue reading Great Salt Lake

Utah Lake and Mt. Timpanogos

A view of the ice-filled Utah Lake looking east towards Mt. Timpanogos.

Map of Lake Bonneville Showing its Extent at the Date of the Provo Shoreline

Map of prehistoric freshwater Lake Bonneville showing its main body and Sevier body, with the Provo water area marked in blue. Lake Bonneville was about 10 times larger than today’s Great Salt Lake which actually is a remnant of Lake Bonneville. The Provo shoreline was formed when the Lake levels stabilized following massive flooding out … Continue reading Map of Lake Bonneville Showing its Extent at the Date of the Provo Shoreline

Colorado River Bridge (Moab, Utah)

The highway to the left is US 160. The photo was taken in July when the water was high and the river at a flood state. Regular boat trips are scheduled from this point to Lees Ferry, a distance of nearly 270 miles.

New York American: vol. 8 no. 750, The Rocky Mountains

Extract from a letter by Mr. D.D. Potts dated “Rocky Mountains, 16 July 1826.” He describes the geography of the area from the Bear River to the Great Salt Lake.

Letter from the Commissioner of Indian Affairs to the Secretary of the Interior dated September 6, 1911

The Commissioner of Indian Affairs discusses a legal claim by the Uintah and White River Utes against the U.S. Government over the construction of the Uintah National Forest