The Summer List

I love taking pictures out of moving vehicles. I feel like a movie star, wearing my floppy straw hat, my bare feet on the dashboard and a camera to capture every moment. This summer I feel blessed to have a job which will allow me to make my own hours and spend lots of time with my kids. I want to make this summer memorable and enjoy parts of our state that we haven’t explored yet. We will be picking one new excursion a week from the list below, packing the car with snacks and taking lots of pictures. I want to sleep in kitschy motels and experience summer the way it’s meant to be experienced, with wide eyes and no fear. I challenge you to make a summer bucket list, even if it has just five new things, you can greet Fall with the knowledge that you didn’t waste your summer waiting for the ice cream truck to come down your street. You went out and found an adventure.

I am taking some ideas from this great book I bought a couple of years ago called Utah Curiosities: Quirky Characters, Roadside Oddities & Other Offbeat Stuff (Curiosities Series) by Brandon Griggs. If you live in Utah, I highly recommend this fantastic travel guide. I have lived here my whole life and 80% of these places were a mystery to me. Happy Travels!!!

*Dinosaur Land, Vernal, Utah
I can’t believe this is so close and I’ve never been!! My kids are going to either love it or roll their eyes for an entire weekend. Either way, we are checking it out.

*Hill Air Force Base Museum.
One hour away and completely free….why haven’t I seen this?

*This Is The Place State Park.
We tried this for my son’s field trip two years ago, but it was a fucking downpour and we weren’t able to enjoy it, so we are headed back. Yes, I just dropped the F bomb in the same paragraph as Brigham Young’s famous saying. I’m a dick like that.

*Dog Lake Hiking Trail
I printed off the directions to this kid friendly hike two years ago and stuck a pin in it, literally. When I found it on the cork board among the other papers I never signed or sent back, I knew it was time to commit.

*Yuba Lake
Once again, I have never been to this lake. I’ve driven past it thousands of time on my way to Southern Utah and always wanted to stop and see what all the fuss was about. I may have to suck it up and let the kiddos camp out for a night. That’s true love.

*City Creek, Trax ride and Downtown Shenanigans.
As I have shared with others, I was completely against this shopping center for a number of reasons. Then I went there. I fell in love and have been working on forgiving the church for taking business away from Gateway ever since. My kids haven’t been yet and because we live in suburbia and are forced to ride in cars everywhere, they love taking public transportation. This is one of those excursions that is a must…it’s close and cheap.

*Donut Falls
Not sure where this is, but I have heard rave reviews from other locals. We love packing picnics and eating on a blanket, so this will be another inexpensive and nifty day trip.

*Salt Flats/Cement Tree. Wendover, Utah.
I have some sketchy memories of living in a trailer park in Wendover when I was young, but I’m putting on my big girl panties and taking a trip down memory lane. Open land where the kids can run and I can take candid pics….you bet your sweet ass we are going. I hate that tree, but everyone should have the experience of seeing art at it’s worst.

*Flaming Gorge
I know what you are saying and I have no answers for you. Never been. I hear how beautiful, close and fantastic this place is and I have yet to see it. I hate camping so ISO: a cheap motel with pool.

*Glendale, Utah
Where? Yeah, it’s a little sneeze of a town in Central Utah where, word has it, I am related to everyone in town, including those in the cemetery. The last time I visited I was a kid and my Great Grandma Maxwell lived in a little house on Main Street, where she was formerly the Postmaster. Super cool lady. We are going on family history expedition.

*Mirror Lake, Uinta Mountain Range.
We grew up camping at this breathtaking lake and while I may not be up for a week of shitting in a port-a-potty, I can make it through a night. My kids have never been, so once the snow melts we are headed that way.

So there it it, the summer list. Do you have a favorite place in Utah? Share it in the comments and feel free to  use this list for your own summer adventures.


2 thoughts on “The Summer List

  1. Aimee

    A few I would add…Treehouse Museum in Ogden, it’s amazingly fun and hand’s on (and there’s a yummy, kitschy/cute cupcake shop close), museums in Tooele (I haven’t tried the Donner Reed museum, but it seems like such a great family conversation on cannibalism in the making). Sounds like a great list, please share how they work out. P.S. My children too, are enamored of Trax…I’m just always scared they are going to pick up head lice on the dirty upholstery (I’m a little OCD about that sorta thing).

  2. Mandy

    Great suggestions!! We will be sharing pics and play by play action on the blog. And all the things that go wrong…cause we all know they will.

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