Taking in Salt Lake City And The Great Salt Lake – Day 43

As we work our way up through Utah towards Idaho, Monday finally saw us arrive in the beautiful state capital of Utah, Salt Lake City.

Salt Lake is the largest city in the state with a little over 1.1 million people living in the metropolitan area. And is it ever growing!

All around the city, wherever we drove, the skyline was filled with crane after crane working on new buildings. It is certainly a city on the move.

Salt lake city
The downtown area of Salt Lake was awash in the colors of Autumn. It was a picture perfect day to walk all around the city. Here in the background, you can see the soaring towers of the Salt Lake Temple.

With a wide open day and nothing in particular scheduled, we decided to spend our time simply enjoying as many sites around the city as we could.

And by day’s end, we certainly had made it all over the city!

Downtown Salt Lake City

We started off with a drive and walk around the state capitol building area (pictured at the top of the article), which sits on a small hill overlooking much of the city.

Salt lake city
We were struck by how much “green space” is scattered all throughout the city. Between the many parks and fountains, and campus of the University of Utah, there is both urban and natural beauty all around. And then of course, there are always those incredible mountains in the background!

Completed in 1916, and after some amazing renovations a few years back, it remains a prominent fixture of the downtown area.

One thing that really stood out to us about Salt Lake in general is how much green space is all throughout the downtown and surrounding area.

the wal mart view
To prove a point about always having a view – Mary took this gorgeous photo from the parking lot of a Wal-Mart!

It really gives the city such a beautiful feel, especially when you can always look up and see those incredible snow-capped mountains in the background.

The University of Utah

Next up on our Salt Lake City tour was a trip over to take a stroll around the picturesque campus of the University of Utah.

salt lake city
The campus at the University of Utah was absolutely stunning. What a gem in the middle of Salt Lake!

We both love to walk, and for some reason, college campuses located in the middle of a city always are such an incredible setting to get in a little exercise.

It certainly didn’t disappoint – it was simply gorgeous walking all around the campus with autumn’s colors on full display.

Call us crazy, but we always try to find a local landmark or background in each area we visit to take with a photo of our camper. And it just so happened that the Ute’s stadium was the choice for today.

I have no idea what we are going to do with all of these location photos someday, but the idea will come at some point!

university of utah
The University of Utah’s football stadium

After a little walking around the campus, it was on to see the namesake of the city, the Great Salt Lake

Seeing The Great Salt Lake

One of the things we also enjoy is the chance to learn a little history about each of the places we visit. And today, we both learned a lot we never knew about the Great Salt Lake.

At about 75 miles long and 35 miles wide, it is the largest salt lake in the Western Hemisphere. And, it is also the largest lake west of the Mississippi River.

It’s actually a small left-over portion of a prehistoric lake (Lake Bonneville) that once covered a huge portion of both Utah and Idaho.

Four rivers empty into the Great Salt Lake, all bringing in dissolved minerals. The lake has no outlet rivers, so the minerals brought in become trapped, giving it it’s “salty” water.

One thing we never knew was just how much the lake fluctuates with it’s water levels. At some low points, the islands in the lake can become peninsulas to the mainland. And at other points, it can extend far beyond to flood the farmlands around it’s banks.

In fact, in the early 80’s, the flooding became so bad, they had to install massive pumps to pump the water into the desert. Like I said, it really is fascinating to learn so much all along the way.

And with that, our day ended with a short drive to Ogden, Utah. It up camp for the night at a local horse farm. Tomorrow, we will head towards Idaho! Happy Traveling – Jim and Mary


  • Day 43 of 365
  • States Visited 7 / 50
  • National Parks / Monuments Visited : 9
  • Stayed In : Ogden, Utah
  • Miles Driven : 97.8
  • Total Trip Miles To Date : 5647.7
  • Total Gallons Used : 418.30
  • Biking Miles : 0
  • Biking Miles To Date : 109.6
  • Hiking Miles : 2.5
  • Hiking Miles To Date : 116.5

About Our Living Simple Tour

On September 9th, 2019, we set out in our NuCamp T@B 400 Teardrop Camper to travel to every state. You can check out all of our dates here : Dates for the States

You can follow along by signing up for our twice weekly email updates at the bottom of the page. You can also follow us on Facebook : Live Simple Tour Facebook and Instagram : Live Simple Now Instagram Page.

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