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Bonneville Salt Flats

Great Salt Lake + Desert, Utah

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Bonneville Salt Flats

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  • The expansive Bonneville Salt Flats.- Bonneville Salt Flats
  • The salt flats are managed by the BLM. This sign shares some of the natural and human history.- Bonneville Salt Flats
  • The Silver Island Mountains reflect off a temporary lake on the flats.- Bonneville Salt Flats
  • Look closely at the salt to see that it's not exactly flat, but composed of a variety of different textures.- Bonneville Salt Flats
  • More interesting textures on the surface.- Bonneville Salt Flats
  • A break in the salt flats- Bonneville Salt Flats
  • Be wary around pools of water on the flats. They make excellent photo ops and poor walking surfaces.- Bonneville Salt Flats
  • Looking down at the Bonneville Salt Flats from the top of Volcano Mountain.- Bonneville Salt Flats
Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Easy access. Endless possibilities to explore.
Cons: 
Scheduled races or other events may limit access.
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Region:
Great Salt Lake + Desert, UT
Congestion: 
Low
Pets allowed: 
Yes
Parking Pass: 
Not Required
Preferable Season(s):
Winter, Spring, Fall
Current Local Weather:
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Adventure Description

Adventure Description

Pro Contributor

The Bonneville Salt Flats is famous as a destination for modern-day auto racers to hit top speeds, but its usage by humans began long before the first motorized vehicle was ever invented. In the 1800s, crossing the salt flats was suggested as a "shortcut" for pioneers traveling to California. Ironically, the Donner-Reed party traveled so slowly through the flats in 1846 that they got trapped by the snow in the Sierra Nevada. Forty-eight of the 87 party members ultimately perished due to lack of food and hypothermia. Famously, the remainder of the party ended up eating the dead in order to survive.

Today, the salt flats provide a unique canvas for exploration by foot, bicycle, ATV, or car. Avoid driving onto the flats when they are wet, as tires can easily get stuck in the mud. Don't suffer the same fate as the Donner Party! Bring plenty of water, too, as there is no shade and plenty of hot sunshine most days of the year.

Check the BLM website for Bonneville Salt Flats to see if there are any scheduled events (to either avoid or attend) before you plan your visit.

Updates, Tips + Comments

Updates, Tips + Comments

Field Guide

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Location + Directions

Location + Directions

Nearby Adventures

(2 within a 30 mile radius)

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