Utah is one of eight states in the Mountain West subregion of the United States. It’s a landlocked state that is bordered by 6 other states. It’s bordered by Idaho to its north, Wyoming to its northeast, Colorado to its east, New Mexico to its southeast (the four corners), Arizona to its south and Nevada to its west. The official nickname of Utah is “Beehive State” to symbolize perseverance, industry, thrift, and collaboration. There are other nicknames of Utah such as: “The Mormon State” and “Deseret”. In this article, we will talk interesting facts about Utah to give us more knowledge about this Beehive State.
1. Utah is One of 10 Doubly Landlocked States of the United States
There are 10 doubly landlocked states of the United States and Utah is one of them. As a doubly landlocked state, we need to cross 2 other states of 1 state and 1 other country to access the sea from Utah. The other doubly landlocked states are: Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, South Dakota, Wisconsin and Wyoming. There’s also Nebraska as the only triply landlocked state in the United States.
2. Salt Lake City is the Capital and Largest City of Utah
The capital city of Utah is Salt Lake City. Salt Lake City is also the largest city in Utah. Salt Lake City Metropolitan Area is also the largest metropolitan area in Utah. Great Salt Lake City was originally named Great Salt Lake City because of its proximity to Great Salt Lake. But, the word “Great” was removed in 1868.
3. Great Salt Lake is the Largest Saltwater Lake in the Western Hemisphere
With 950 sq mi or 2,500 km2 surface area (2021), Great Salt Lake is the largest saltwater lake in the United States as well as the largest in the western hemisphere. It’s also the 8th largest terminal lake in the world. As a terminal lake, Great Salt Lake doesn’t have any outlet besides evaporation. It causes high salinity (higher than seawater) and density that allows us to float if we are swimming in this lake.
4. Utah is the Second Driest State
With average precipitation of only about 11 inches (280 mm) a year, Utah is the second driest state in the United States behind Nevada. The area over the Great Salt Lake has the lowest precipitation with less than less than 8 inches (200 mm) while Wasatch Mountains has the highest with 50 inches (1,280 mm). Utah has dry weather because it lies in the rain shadow of the Sierra Nevada in California.
5. More than 55% of Utah Population are Mormon
Utah is the only state in the United States in which the majority of population belongs to a single church. 55% of the state population are mormon. Most of them are the member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) that headquartered in Salt Lake City. Mormons fleeing marginalization and persecution from Illinois were among the first settlers of Utah. The Salt Lake Temple is the largest LDS Church in the world by Area.
6. Utah is the Second Largest Producing State of Copper
Behind Arizona, Utah is the second largest producer of copper in the United States. Most of the copper in Utah is produced by Bingham Canyon Mine located in the southwest of Salt Lake City. The Bingham Canyon Mine has been one of the world’s largest copper producers that owned and operated by Kennecott Utah Copper (part of Rio Tinto Group). It is a large open pit in a porphyry copper deposit and one of the largest open-pit mines in the world.
7. Utah Has the Least Income Inequality of any State in the United States
Utah is the state with the least income inequality in the United States while it’s 14th-highest in median average income. In overall health index, Utah is also usually on the best top 10 among all of the US States. Utah also has a good ranking in education, infrastructure, fiscal and stability as well as crime and correction.
8. Kings Peak is the Highest Natural Point of Utah
At 13,528 feet (4,123 m) elevation, Kings Peak is the highest natural point of Utah. It’s located in Kings Peak lies within the boundaries of the High Uintas Wilderness, just south of the spine of the central Uinta Mountains. Kings Peak is often considered as the hardest state highpoint to be climbed without specialist rock climbing skills and/or guiding.
9. California Gull is the State Bird of Utah
The California gull (Larus californicus) was designated as the official state bird of Utah in 1955. It was chosen as the state bird to remember the assistance of California gull to Mormon settlers in dealing with a plague of Mormon crickets. The Seagull Monument was built in front of the Salt Lake Assembly Hall on Temple Square to remember this event.
10. The State Flower of Utah is The Sego Lily
In 1911, The sego lily (Calochortus nuttallii) was designated as the official state flower of Utah. It’s a perennial plant native to Western United States. It can be widely found in Utah and Wyoming as well as parts of other Western states. The Sego Lily is commemorated with the Sego Lily Dam in Sugar House Park, Salt Lake City that was built in 2017.
If you know other interesting facts about Utah, it’s a good idea to share those facts with us here. Surely, there any many interesting facts about Utah that we haven’t talked about here.