What many consider to be the world`s best ski resorts, Brighton, Solitude, Alta or Snowbird, are located just 40 minutes from Salt Lake City, Utah, home of the 2002 Winter Olympics. Salt Lake City has direct service from most major metropolitan cities in North America. It is possible to catch a morning flight from New York, Boston or Washington DC and be skiing the best snow in the world that very afternoon.
Salt Lake City is located in a valley between two mountain ranges - the Wasatch Mountain Range on the eastern side and the Oquirrhs on the western side. In all, Salt Lake City offers ten world-class ski resorts and the best of those are Brighton, Solitude, Alta and Snowbird. The climate is comfortable year-round because of the low humidity and sunny days.
Salt Lake City is not just for skiers or snowboarders. These world-class ski resorts morph into spectacular outdoor gardens and playgrounds as soon as the snow melts. A photographer`s dream, these resort towns offer first-class hiking, foliage, rock climbing, fishing, camping and picnicking and provide a good base from which to drive to 10 national parks.
Want to spend a day out of the sun? Salt Lake City is also a thriving cultural center offering its own symphony orchestra, opera, dance and theater company, choir and numerous art galleries and museums. Most visitors will tour Temple Square and journey to the world famous Great Salt Lake.
Interesting Things to Know About Salt Lake City, Utah History
- Salt Lake City was founded in 1847 by a group of Mormons led by Brigham Young. They were the first non-Indians to settle the region. The founding group numbered 148 people consisting of 143 men, 3 women and 2 children.
- The first known residents, however, were the Pueblo People who were also called Anasazi Indians. They occupied the region from 1 AD to 1300 AD. The Navajo Indians and the Ute Tribe also settled and roamed the region. The state name of Utah is derived from the Utes.
- The Mormons settled the region of Utah because they needed a place to call their own, a place to practice their religion, today known as the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Logic went into the planning of the Salt Lake City: city blocks were centered by Temple Square and were arranged in a grid pattern in 10-acre squares separated by streets wide enough (132 feet) so that a team of 4 oxen pulling a covered wagon could turn around.
- The seagull is Utah`s state bird because it saved the region from starvation in the mid-1850`s when it consumed a plague of crickets that had run rampant on the Mormon harvest.
- In 1848, Utah was ceded to the Union by Mexico. The Mexican state of Deseret became known as the Utah Territory. The name deseret is translated to honeybee in English which means industriousness. Today, the honeybee is the state symbol.
- Construction on the great Mormon temple began in 1853. The temple was constructed of large granite blocks individually hauled from Little Cottonwood Canyon by ox until a branch railroad line was built.
- Brighton Village at the top of Big Cottonwood Canyon, where Brighton Ski Resort is located, was where for many years where Utah families of means would spend their summers. Located only 20 miles from Salt Lake City, Brighton offered a cool and pristine escape from the warm days of summer in the Salt Lake Valley. Today, many of these pioneer cabins still exist.