Best Time to Visit Utah – and More!

Our Home State is Pretty, Great!

 Utah is home to a wide variety of landscapes and things to do. We have beautiful mountains that can be hiked, driven, and skied. We have reservoirs for boating, kayaking, canoeing, paddle boards, fishing and swimming. There are many canyons to be explored and historic sites to see. Multiple National Parks and camping abound.  There truly is something for everyone.

When is the best time to visit Utah?  That depends on the location of the state you plan to visit and what your goals are.  Below is information based on location and a little of what to expect, so you can decide when the best time to come visit our great state will be for you!

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Southern Utah

Number one on everyone’s list for Southern Utah is the National Parks.  Zions is the most famous, and we agree that it is worth visiting.  It is open year round and there are two visitor centers.  Visitors are encouraged to stop by to learn more about how to minimize our impact on the fragile desert landscape.  You can get passes and special permits are required from some hikes, overnight.

However, if that is all you come for, you will miss out as there is so much more!

Snow Canyon, Quail Creek, Sand Hollow, Red Cliffs, Kolob, Cedar Breaks and Bryce Canyon all offer plenty of red desert beauty that will capture you (and your clothes).  Beyond hiking and viewing, there are options to go horseback riding, 4 wheeling, boating, jeep, and helicopter tours.  These areas are growing in popularity and word is getting out, but they will often be less crowded with still satisfying views and areas to explore.

There are also many cultural options with the Tuacahn Amphitheater and the world famous Shakespearian Festival as well as museums and historical sites.  Whatever you are interested in, we can find something amazing that will fit your preferences.

Best Time to Visit:

Summer months will bring hot temperatures – usually above 100 degrees and lots of crowds.  This area becomes more popular each year breaking attendance records and people flock to these locales to check out the amazing views and experience the incredible hikes.  This is the best time to do some of the hikes that require permits or that have risk of flash flooding.

Spring and Fall will reward you will cooler temperatures and fewer crowds.  You’ll also be able to experience the budding of spring or the colors of fall.  However, rains are more likely and so you’ll want to bring poncho, a buddy, check the weather often, and let others know where you are going.

Winter will reward you with the least crowds and the beauty of the desert sometimes with a dusting of snow.  Be sure to take shoes with good treads and walking sticks for any tricky spots but you will likely be rewarded with some solitude and cheaper pricing.  This is the favorite time for some on our team and when you’re most likely to meet locals.  But again, let someone know where you will be as it’s not as likely someone will cross your path.

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Eastern Utah

Come Here If You're Interested In:

Many people associate this area with Moab and the beautiful Arches National Park.  It is an incredible park with enough arches to satisfy anyone.  Our co-worker took her children and about the 12th arch heard her son say:  “I think I know why they call it arches.”  Each arch is unique and worth the walk or hike to see.  However, there are three other amazing main areas to this section of the state.

Canyonlands has the hikes that are instagrammed and many need permits to visit to preserve the areas.  There are three districts and you could spend a whole day exploring each one.  With beautiful names such as Island in the Sky, the Needles and the Maze.  Don’t miss Horseshoe Canyon and the visitor’s center while you’re there.

The Green River is a great place to whitewater raft, kayak, or canoe.  It runs from Vernal down to the Canyonlands area and winds through some remote and rugged landscape before it meets the Colorado River.  It is a fun place to play, practice, or improve your skills.

Vernal is known as Dinosaurland and is near Dinosaur National Monument where here and the Utah Field House of Natural History you can get your fill of fossils and petroglyphs.  Or try your hand at finding them in the wild as you explore the nearby reservoir, lake, hiking and biking trails and camping spots.

Best Time to Visit:

The area is a high desert which means temperatures can swing as much as 40 degrees in a single day.  

Summer tends to be quite hot with the average temperature over 100 degrees.  There are also late rains that can bring monsoon like conditions and flash flooding.  Checking the weather before your travel is wise.  However, the summer brings fewer crowds, so if you bring lots of water and prepare for the scorching heat, you will enjoy all these areas have to offer.

Spring and Fall are popular especially around local holidays and school breaks.  However, if you can travel during the in between times, you will be rewarded with more moderate temperature to visit the parks and fewer crowds.

Winter can be delightful but it also bring snow and cold temperatures making camping, water activities, and some of the hikes difficult.  However, there are dry and moderate weeks where the hardy can enjoy a refreshing hike, snowshoeing, cross country skiing, or ice fishing.  The Utah Field House of Natural History is indoors and can be enjoyed year round.

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Wasatch Front:

Come Here If You're Interested In:

This areas stretches from Logan to Provo with Salt Lake, Park City, and Ogden the major locations in between.  There are many varieties of activities from outdoors to the big cities.

There are museums, theater, restaurants and entertainment that you would expect from any metropolitan areas.  The Capital at Salt Lake City as well as Temple Square with the famed Tabernacle, Temple, and Conference Center with rooftop gardens are popular tourist attractions.  Park City with all of its Olympic Venues and outdoor adventure bring many to the state. 

The variety of activities that can be had throughout this area are numerous.  There are a multitude of hikes, camping, boating, fishing, atv rides, horseback riding, ice fishing, snowboarding, skiing and snowmobiling to keep the beginner to novice happy.

Climbing the different trails along the Rocky Mountains can be an multiday or a few hour excursion.  The reservoirs are dotted along the area and provide variety and varied options.  We live and play in this area and can help you find the right fit for you for your skill level and desires.  Let us know what you are looking for and we will point you in the right direction with all of our insider tips.

Best Time to Visit:

The Wasatch front follows the Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall patterns with the summer being hot and the winters snowy or cold.  There is no right or wrong time to visit the area – it is dependent on if you want to water ski – or snow ski.  If you want to hike or snowshoe.  Just check the weather as you can’t go wrong coming here as the crowding and access to areas is similar year round.

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No matter when you choose to go, remember that temperatures can vary widely in the state.  Often it will be blazing hot in the day and quite cool at night.  Be sure to pack for multiple scenarios, layers, and get the most up to date forecast.  

We joke that you can experience each season in a week’s time because it has been known to be above 100 degrees and then snow all within the same week.  Some days Mother Nature just can’t decide what mood she is in but there is beauty in all her seasons here in Utah.

We would love to help you plan a visit to get the most out of our pretty, great state!

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