Welcome to Park City

Park City, UT

Our next stop on our westward trek was to the Park City area in the Wasatch Mountains just west of Salt Lake City.  We were able to get a nice site in nearby Jordanelle State Park.  Most of the sites here are water and electric only, but since we just came from a park without sewer or water, we wanted full hook-ups to do some laundry.  They do have a few sites with full hook-ups but they are usually taken by work campers or hosts.  Fortunately, one of the work campers left, so we were able to get that site.

Site 31

Bear Mountain ski slopes looking out our side window

Jordanelle Reservoir looking out the front window

Rainy weather greeted us the first two days of our stay so on day one we decided to take the scenic road over the mountains to Salt Lake City.  Marsac Ave. (UT-224) goes steeply up from the main area of Park City.  Going up we passed a number of large ski areas with beautiful homes and condos all over the place.  There are so many ski slopes and chair lifts around here people must get lost during the snow season and end up miles from their destinations!

At the top, called Empire Pass, the road becomes the Guardsman Pass Road and is closed in the winter.  For a few minutes things got a little tricky when we became enveloped in the cloud as the road narrowed along the pass.

But as we crossed the pass the sun poked through the clouds illuminating the changing colors of the Aspens in the distance.

In the upper elevations there was a bit of snow on the ground and on the high peaks.

As we drove down the west side of the mountains approaching Salt Lake City, the clouds became a bit ominous as they swirled around the peaks.

Our first stop in the city was at a small sculptor garden called Gilgal Garden.

Gilgal Sculpture Garden was envisioned, designed and created by Thomas Child , a Salt Lake City mason, in the mid-twentieth century.  It represents his desire to give physical form to spiritual beliefs.  The garden contains twelve original sculptural arrangements and over 70 stones engraved with scriptures, poems, and philosophical texts.

Gilgad means “Circle of Stone”

“The Sphinx” with the face of Mormon founder Joseph Smith

“Monument to the Priesthood”

“Monument to the Trade”

Child was a mason by trade.  “Monument to the Trade” is a self-portrait in which Child holds a Bible in his right hand and a set of blueprints in his left.  It represents his love for his trade and his church.

“Last Chapter in the Book of Ecclesiastics”

Not far from the sculptor garden is our second stop, the Utah State Capitol Building, constructed between 1912 and 1916.

Utah is called the Beehive State and a display inside  the capitol explains why.

In the main rotunda there are two grand stairways.  Above each and throughout the rotunda are scenes from Utah history.  The skylight in the photo below is one of several specifically included in the design of the building to emphasize openness in government.

Mormon Pioneers

Mural depicting Brigham Young arriving in the Salt Lake area

Senate chambers

House of Representatives

After two days of steady rain the weather is predicted to improve so the nimble hiker is busy planning some adventures up in the mountains.

More on that later . . .

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19 Responses to Welcome to Park City

  1. Laurel says:

    We had a great time in the Wasatch Mountains and exploring Park City a couple of years ago in the fall. I think we were there at just about the same time in September — the colors were gorgeous! We had a blast biking to the nearby small town of Heber City. We missed the cool sculpture garden and the capitol building — need to do that next time we’re there. I think we were spending time in the High West distillery instead, hehe. Love your gorgeous photos!

    • placestheygo says:

      We missed the distillery, but we did hit my favorite brewery Wasatch Brewery that makes my favorite beer, Polygamy Porter! Yes, there is a lot to keep one busy in the area. I had several more hikes I really wanted to do. Oh, well, next time!

      • Laurel says:

        We have definitely got to go to the Watsatch Brewery next time we’re in Park City. We were contemplating to head to Park City mid-October, but are opting for 395 instead this time around. 😉

  2. pmbweaver says:

    Beautiful header! Your site looks super.
    Bring on the gorgeous color of fall!
    Love the Sculpture Garden. Lots of unique sculptures.
    The Capitol is lovely. I just love visiting them.
    Now you know why our friends go to Park City every year. They just love it. There is so much to do there. Enjoy the adventure.

    • placestheygo says:

      Jordanelle SP is a very nice place, but many of the sites are unlevel including ours. I can see why your friends return especially if you enjoy outside activities. Sure is a beautiful area:)

  3. Mary says:

    I lived a good portion of my life in utah, and have never been to the capitol. Lol. The two large ski resortst there are a blast, lots of terrain.

    • placestheygo says:

      Well, Mary, I lived about 45 mins from the PA capitol for 25 years and never visited! Must have been too darn close:) I can’t even begin to imagine this area in the winter. It must be crazy!

  4. That looks like a very nice state park and what a bonus to get full hook ups!

  5. LuAnn says:

    This is definitely a place to add to the list. I would love to see that sculpture garden and we are always up for touring capitol buildings. I can see why you two love the state of Utah so much.

  6. We stayed at peaceful Jordanelle, too, recently! I saw a lot of deer there when I ran in the mornings. Park City was fun to visit, but I wished it was closer to the park.

  7. I lived and worked there for 3 years. The public transportation system is not bad if there are things you want to do from Salt Lake City north or south. The gardens on top of the Conference Center next to Temple Square are unique. The gardens on Temple Square are exquisite I could walk there from work. Hope you got some hiking in around Park City. Good to know there is a State Park nearby as that is a place I have on my list to get to in the next couple years.

    • placestheygo says:

      We only made one trip into SLC this time since we toured the entire Temple Square a few years back. We spent our time in and around Park City and the ski resorts. We found lots of great hiking but lost two days to rain.

  8. debbiemc14 says:

    Beautiful pictures. Even with the cloudy weather. There is a luge-like type of ride at one of those ski parks. They call them Alpine Slides. Really fun! Popular back east, not so much out west. I’m sure you’ll come up with some really cool hikes.

    • placestheygo says:

      Thanks, Debbie! We saw the Alpine Slide the other day when we were hiking in the Park City Mountain Resort! Almost all the activities at the resorts are shut down as of the last weekend to prepare for the up coming ski season so no one was using the slide.

  9. Gay says:

    Awesome photos Pam.

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