Naturalizing around Salt Lake on June 23rd?

Hey top 10 Utah inaturalists! I'll be in Salt Lake City the weekend of June 23-24 following the CVPR conference (where I know @cullen and @gvanhorn will be too). It will be my first visit to Utah. I'd love any tips on where are good places to naturalize. Or if anyone happens to be near Salt Lake and wants to meet up for a hike that would be awesome too!
@jay, @hannawacker, @bfox81, @zookanthos, @dlcoleman, @tigerbb, @rlawrenz, @dprasad, @mark67, @bryanto (and please loop in anyone else who may be interested in a hike)

Publicado el 30 de mayo de 2018 a las 06:07 AM por loarie loarie


Hi Scott, welcome to Utah. I moved here from Australia about 5 years ago. I have done a lot of traveling around Utah, its an amazing state with lots of diversity and scenery. If you like birding I suggest Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge north of Salt Lake. It has a ton of birds there. Also Antelope Island is good for birds, you should also see Bison and Antelope. For butterflies the Wasatch mountains is excellent, the mountain range east of Salt Lake. For wildflowers the high areas of the Wasatch is amazing, go up Little Cottonwood Canyon or Big Cottonwood Canyon, at that time of year you should start seeing the alpine flowers. I should be mostly free that weekend, happy to catch up for a group hike.

Anotado por rlawrenz hace cerca de 6 años

Yes! Yes! Yes! I am always so jealous of you Californians and your network of naturalists, meeting up for awesome adventures. ;D

The first thing that comes to my mind is Antelope Island at the Great Salt Lake, just because it's a unique place---migrating birds galore, brine shrimp, stromatolites, bison. I enjoy hiking in the foothills above the University of Utah, and there are numerous canyons up and down the Wasatch Front that offer hiking trails from the low mountain creeks all the way up to the mountaintop lakes. This is not helpful though...... I have had a lot of fun on the west side of Utah Lake. There's a great area for rockhounding there, where I find lots of fun critters and plants. :)

Looking forward to your visit, Scott!


Anotado por tigerbb hace cerca de 6 años

Scott, thanks for including us in your 1st Utah visit - exciting! Rolf and Rebecca have some good suggestions - seeing (and smelling) the Salt Lake is certainly worth doing, and I would say Antelope Island and the Causeway leading to would be the best choice for birding, with an emphasis on migrating shore birds...not much in the way of plant diversity, though. The Alta ski area in Little Cottonwood Canyon is great to use as an exploration base, and you'll see more specialized high-altitude species of birds (especially hummingbirds), plants, and mammals (marmots, pika), with great hikes to mountain lakes through the wildflowers - July is usually peak for them, but because of the warmer season I think we're anticipating an earlier bloom time this year. If there's anything in particular you want to try and see just let us know...we can definitely point you in the right direction or connect you with a knowledge expert.

I'm doing a bird survey that morning, but should wrap up around 9:30 - so would definitely be up for meeting somewhere and can help out with transportation if needed. Several of us on here are citizen science volunteers with the Natural History Museum of Utah and exclusively use iNat for local bioblitz events and a few specialized projects. Coordinating something there could also be an option, if you want a chance to see any of the collections and hike/observe the surrounding area. @tigerbb, @lcthompson, @chad_w, @lkaili, @allycoconis

Anotado por bfox81 hace cerca de 6 años

I’d be happy to join such an outing, but I’ll be in costumed re-enactments at Golden Spike National Historic Site that day. @todd3331 is one of the most active butterfly naturalist in the state, and pivotal at public outreach. He’d be good to have along.

Anotado por hannawacker hace cerca de 6 años

Welcome to Utah, Scott! I agree with all of the recommendations above. It will most likely be hot (high 90*s to over 100*), so I would suggest hitting the Great Salt Lake and Antelope Island in the morning then heading to the Wasatch Mountains in the afternoon and evening. We went to Albion Basin in Little Cottonwood Canyon around the same time last year and it was lush with flowers. We also saw lots of birds, moose, mule deer and many smaller mammals as well. There is a very popular hike in that basin (Cecret Lake) that is overcrowded with people, but 90% of the people just travel the main trail and spend time at the lake. If you branch off on any of the side trails or continue past the lake it is much less crowded and easier to encounter the various animals. I'll be in town that weekend, but may be busy getting ready for a youth camp the following week, so I'll have to commit later on availability.

Anotado por c_welch hace cerca de 6 años

I'm so excited that you are visiting Utah and so sad that I'll be out of town that weekend. If you're interested in including a visit to the Natural History Museum of Utah in your visit, please let me know. I'd be happy to arrange tickets for you or connect you to any of our researchers.

Anotado por lcthompson hace cerca de 6 años

Thanks for all the responses folks! The Antelope Island / Wasatch Mountains combo seems pretty awesome... Would be awesome to have a little meetup/hike!

Anotado por loarie hace cerca de 6 años

Big or Little Cottonwood Canyons are your best choice in late June. Hiking through Albion Basin to one of the surrounding ridgelines would in Little Cottonwood offers the greatest diversity in the area. I am attending a conference that weekend in Park City, but I might be able to hook up on Sunday.

Anotado por jay hace cerca de 6 años

Thanks @hannawacker

Hi Scott, what species are you looking for? Two of our more popular locations in Utah are Lambs Canyon and Farmington Canyon in late June; depending upon which species are of priority. I've broken down the state into physio-geographic regions with respective checklists on this web page. Just scroll down to the bottom and click on the region. Feel free to email me at for specifics.

Anotado por todd3331 hace cerca de 6 años


Hey Scott,

My name is Lexi and I am the Citizen Science coordinator at the NHMU. I would love to join for a day of naturalizing! I agree with folks that the Antelope Island (AM) / Wasatch Mountains (PM) combo is a great idea. The wildflowers in both Big and Little Cottonwood Canyons are phenomenal, though the Cecret Lake trail in Little Cottonwood Canyon is the iconic wildflower area ( It has heavy traffic as Chad mentioned, but gorgeous nonetheless. In Big Cottonwood Canyon, there are three beautiful lakes on the Brighton Lakes trail ( There are usually moose and all sorts of wildlife/plant diversity at both of the locations I've mentioned above. Since it will be Saturday, both of these locations will be busy but are large areas where we could easily find pockets of solitude. If you'd like recommendations on other hikes, I'm very familiar with hiking trails in the Wasatch.

For meeting at Antelope Island, there is a parking lot BEFORE you get to the toll booth where we could all meet and carpool across the causeway - lots of great bird sightings. The state park charges per vehicle.

Here is the location of the parking lot:,+UT+84075/@41.0887867,-112.1192391,200m/data=!3m2!1e3!4b1!4m13!1m7!3m6!1s0x8752e0473d9347af:0xd91b355633b3b894!2sAntelope+Island!3b1!8m2!3d40.9580848!4d-112.2145571!3m4!1s0x87531b94b134b171:0x2cfa969f7a679e45!8m2!3d41.0887644!4d-112.1188031

@lcthompson is the NHMU's Exhibit Developer and has pioneered the Citizen Science initiatives here at the museum. As she mentioned, we would love to set up tickets for you to visit the museum if you'd like.

Also, let me know if there is anything else we can do to make your first visit to Utah awesome! I will be free all day Saturday, the 23rd.


Anotado por lkaili hace cerca de 6 años

Hi Lexi, Todd, and Jay - apologies for the delayed response. Saturday is fast approaching - so I definitely want to get on this now!

I'm also free all day Saturday. While an Antelope Island (AM) / Cecret Lake Wasatch Mountains (PM) combo sounds awesome, Google maps says they're separated by a 3 hour drive. Does that seem reasonable for people?

If not, is there a closer place in the Wasatch Mountains we could pick for the PM spot?

We could also set a Antelope Island time/place to meet up in the AM and go from there.... What do you suggest?

Also for this we used GroupMe app to coordinate logistics (I've also used WhatsApp for the same kind of thing) - both use phone numbers. Should I set something like that up to coordinate? Preference between GroupMe or WhatsApp?

Anotado por loarie hace cerca de 6 años

Hi Scott,
It looks like I'm going to have to skip out on this roundup this time :(. I don't think it will take a full 3 hours to get from Antelope Island to Cecret lake. 50 minutes of the travel time Google lists is on the island itself, but if you stay near the causeway and east side of the island, it shouldn't be as long.

It looks like there are a couple of activities planned near Cecret lake that day that may draw in extra crowds. Hawkwatch is sponsoring a brunch mid-morning ( followed by a town cleanup, trail restoration, and native plant planting (

If you want to avoid the crowds, there are quite a few other trails around. I've heard good reviews of Lamb's Canyon this time of year (although I haven't been) Adam's canyon is another one fairly close to Antelope Island, but because it is so close to the valley, it is also heavily trafficed My family hiked that on Memorial day. The flowers were just coming out then. We saw a few squirrels, but no other wildlife, probably because of the number of people.

I wish I could join you this weekend. It sounds like a great time!

Anotado por c_welch hace cerca de 6 años

Hi folks,

The conference is wrapping up here and I'm excited to get outside tomorrow and do some naturalizing.

@cullen, @gvanhorn and I spent some time discussing and we need to pull the trigger between Big Cotton Wood Canyon (Brighton Lakes trail), Little Cotton Wood Canyon (Snow Bird), and Farmington Canyon We'll probably meet around 10am.

If anyone has any ideas on which of these we should do, please chime in. Otherwise we'll probably randomly pick one over dinner and I'll ping people where/when we'll be in case anyone wants to meet.



Anotado por loarie hace cerca de 6 años

Alright - we have a plan - we're meeting here (9877 Big Cottonwood Canyon Road, Salt Lake City, UT 84121 - 9 miles up big cottonwood canyon on the left (north) side of th eroad the parking lot is labeled 'Mill D' - no cell service at the trailhead but there is 5-10 minutes up the trail) at 10:00am Saturday 6/23. There will be about 8 of us from the conference (inc @dloarie, @cullen, & @gvanhorn) and @lkaili @bfox81 are planning on joining. if anyone else can make it (e.g. @todd3331, @rlawrenz, et al) that would be awesome. If you want to get in phone contact - email me your number to loarie at gmail dot com and I'll send you a text.

The trail leads to Desolation Lake, but some of us will have some kids along so the plan is to take it slow and be content to noodle around the trail without planning to make it to the Lake depending on how the young-uns are feeling. Looking forward to seeing everyone!


Anotado por loarie hace cerca de 6 años

Thanks Scott. Tony and I will take Powder Alley Trail near Dog Lake and Lake Mary around 12:00 Noon on Saturday. This is up at Brighton Ski area up Big Cottonwood Canyon. That will be our second stop after Jordanelle to search for Lycaena rubidus late instar larvae. We are doing some studies on Plebejus idas annetta and will looking for post-diapause caterpillars on Lupinus argenteus. We will be at 40°35'17.35"N 111°34'59.53"W if you want to hook up. There should be many other butterflies on wing.

Anotado por todd3331 hace cerca de 6 años
Anotado por loarie hace cerca de 6 años

Añade un comentario

Entra o Regístrate para añadir comentarios