As the pictographs and petroglyphs indicate, Utah was traveled well before the rail lines opened up access.
Abbey's two years as an Arches National Park ranger inspired him to write "Desert Solitaire," and coin the phrase "industrial tourism."
There are tens of thousands of ruins, artifacts, petroglyphs and pictographs throughout the region. One of the most fun things you can do is find an ancient artifact on your own.
Abbey's book evokes the stark beauty and grandeur of Utah's red-rock country. He champions the cause against "industrial tourism."
Frederick S. Dellenbaugh was a painter and a photographer that helped popularize Zion National Park and bring national attention to southeastern Utah.
From some of the continent's most ancient artifacts through the living history of the earliest European settlers, there are more historic sites than you can shake a stick at.
The first Anglo-European settlers, Mormon pioneers, named the area Zion, which is ancient Hebrew for sanctuary or refuge.
The earliest evidence of humans in the Zion National Park area is about 10,000 BC, from ancient spear points found among the remains of woolly mammoths and other Ice Age species.
Wallace Stegner's "Beyond the Hundredth Meridian" is the finest biography of explorer-scientist John Wesley Powell, the famed explorer of the Grand Canyon in 1869.
Railroads have always been involved with the national park system in the United States, from the founding of the first national park, Yellowstone.
Utah is full of little towns with old west history (and ghosts!) Visit these tiny burbs in the Southern half of the state.
Filmed over the course of more than six years at some of nature's most spectacular locales from Acadia to Zion -- The National Parks: America's Best Idea really does express one of our best ideas ever.
Southern Utah has long provided spectacular scenery for westerns, and just plain wild/weird scenery for science fiction or horror movies.