Welcome to Antelope Island

Antelope Island Utah

Bison were not something we expected to find roaming Utah, which we’ve always envisioned as a dusty place that grows amazing red rock formations instead of grasslands. We certainly didn’t expect to see grazing animals near its largest city and especially not in the middle of the Great Salt Lake for which that city is named. But not only does a herd of 600 bison roam the 42 square miles of Antelope Island, so do pronghorn, bighorn sheep, bobcats, coyotes, porcupine, badgers and millions of water fowl. It’s like one of the world’s largest city zoos, only without the cages.

This largest island in the Great Salt Lake is accessed either by boat or via a seven-mile causeway that connects it to the mainland. From there visitors are treated to magnificent views of the Wasatch Range that constitutes the western edge of the Rockies and envelopes Salt Lake City.

Bison on Antelope Island Utah

Lone bison chilling in the tall grass of Antelope Island, Utah

Hiking and mountain biking are popular activities on the island, and its white sand beaches beckon swimmers to try out the most wonderfully buoyant salinated water this side of the Dead Sea.

Hordes of insects can be a problem during May and June, but eight miles of driving trails make it possible to comfortably “safari” around the island and enjoy its scenery and wildlife even when nasty gnats are at their worst.

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14 Comments on “Welcome to Antelope Island”

  1. hswinson September 14, 2012 at 9:36 am #

    Wow, so cool! I didn’t realize the Great Salt Lake was big enough to have a huge island in the middle of it. I guess you learn something new everyday.

    Like

  2. CopperLeaf Treasures September 14, 2012 at 11:38 am #

    Your blog is awe-inspiring! I love it and see you’ve received many awards and honors! L’il ol’ me has nominated your blog for one more…I am nominating you later this morning for the “Very Inspiring Blogger” award. Please feel free to stop by and pick up your award! Thank you for inspiring me to be more!

    Like

  3. denisediscovers September 15, 2012 at 2:40 am #

    Beautiful pictures! Antelope Island sounds like a wonderful place to visit.

    Like

  4. Angelia Sims September 15, 2012 at 3:59 pm #

    I got to visit Antelope Island. It is the best place to see the Great Salt Lake. 🙂

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  5. earthriderjudyberman September 15, 2012 at 9:37 pm #

    Antelope Island sounds very cool. I’m not sure I’d be comfortable traipsing in it. A car ride on the driving trails sounds perfect.

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  6. mamacormier September 16, 2012 at 9:58 am #

    Beautiful reflection shot. Perfectly balanced.

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  7. EYHO - Travel Deep September 17, 2012 at 7:28 am #

    Eye-opening and heartening that despite humans’ best efforts, an Eden lives on. Akin to the Great Serengeti-Mara Migration…

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    • Brian September 17, 2012 at 3:54 pm #

      “Despite our best efforts” indeed.

      Like

  8. Arizona girl September 18, 2012 at 3:24 am #

    I’m slightly scarred (emotionally) by my experience on Antelope Island. I really wanted to enjoy it because, as you said, it really is a beautiful place. The problem was that we did a mountain bike tour around the island. During bug season. I’m not sure how that happened, but I was picking gnats out of my hair for days, and they kept coming out of my ears and nose. Ew! Maybe I’ll have to go back one of these days…

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  9. Tammy September 19, 2012 at 4:29 am #

    Wonderful post – brought back memories of my trip to Antelope Island last year. This is a really special place with a true sense of wilderness yet so close to the city. We stayed overnight in a RV and woke up to a bison eating breakfast outside our truck!

    Like

    • Brian September 19, 2012 at 1:02 pm #

      Love that about camping – having nature walk up and make itself at home in “your” space.

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  10. NewLifeOnTheRoad (@NewLifeOnRoad) October 4, 2012 at 8:25 am #

    Looks amazing – where you scared about seeing so many animals in the wild roaming free? Kinda would be weird to see the animals without the cages!

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    • Brian October 6, 2012 at 8:56 am #

      We love seeing animals in the wild. There is something wonderful about them when they’re in their natural habitat. I even find wild horses somehow more magical then the ones behind fences. We try to keep a respectful distance though. Wild critters are unpredictible and potentially dangerous.

      Like

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Utah in the Rearview Mirror | Everywhere Once - December 21, 2012

    […] far from aptly named Antelope Island rises the Wasatch Mountain Range. Surrounded by lush greenery in summer, its nearly 12,000 foot […]

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