Utah Geography and History

Utah is a state where nature rules. The vast majority of the more than 2.5 million inhabitants inhabit the regions of Salt Lake City, the capital of Utah. Centuries ago, the Ute Indian tribe lived here, which literally means ‘people from the mountains’. That is how the state got its name! The area in and around Utah is very mountainous.

According to deluxesurveillance, Utah is nationally one of the few states where the vast majority of the population adheres to one religion. They call themselves Mormons who are followers of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latterday Saints. This belief has permeated virtually every aspect of Utahn life. Most people are very conservative and the majority of voters vote for Republicans. For example, there is strict policy on alcohol and gambling and the annual average of births is 25% higher than in the rest of the country!


The state borders Idaho to the north and Arizona and New Mexico to the south. East of Utah is the state of Colorado and to the north-east is Wyoming. To the west borders the state of Nevada, known for the largest gambling paradise on earth, Las Vegas. This Mormon state of Utah falls under the region ‘Four corner states’. Along with New Mexico, Colorado and Arizona, Utah is a huge draw for those who love breathtaking landscapes.

The nature is very diverse and is also unique for this area. The name ‘Four Corner States’ actually means that where the states border each other, there is a four-country point. In no other place in the US is there a four-country point, or rather ‘four-state point’, and that’s what makes this place so special.


According to electronicsmatter, Utah also has a very diverse nature in itself. The Wasatch Mountains to the north-east are an ideal place for skiing. Every year people from all over the world come here to enjoy the powder snow and the beautiful surroundings. At the foot of the mountain, on the west side, are valleys with fertile soil. This is where the vast majority of the population resides. Originally the major cities such as Salt Lake City and Ogden were located here, but the urban area is slowly expanding through the valleys, both to the north and south.


Western Utah is the driest part of the state. The Great Salt Lake desert begins behind the Great Salt Lake. The dry desert extends over much of the west. It’s a rugged landscape of barren plains and mountains, culminating in the incredibly beautiful Bonneville Salt Flats. Sweat like you’ve never sweated before? In any case, the south-west of Utah is sweating.

This area is the most low-lying and hottest spot in the state. Do not think that it is hundreds of meters below sea level, just like the Netherlands. The lowest point of Utah is called Beaverdam Wash and is located at about 600 meters altitude. This area used to be called Dixie, after the ‘Deep South’ that includes the states of Louisiana, Alabama and Georgia.

This is because the cotton plants in this part of Utah have been found to thrive just as well as in the swampy regions of the Deep South. You would not say that this area is inhabited due to the climatic conditions, but nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, Dixie is increasingly becoming a permanent residence for Utahns.


Utah’s highest point is in the Uinta Mountains. Because the state hides behind the mountains of the Sierra Nevada in the west and on the north-east side behind the Wasatch Mountains, there is relatively little rainfall in Utah. Rain and thunderstorms occur during monsoon season in the southeastern part of the state, which is just experiencing ‘nuisance’ from the proximity of the Gulf of California.


Before Europeans reached Utahn territory, the Ute, Shoshone and Paiute Indians lived here. The state also owes its name to the Ute Indians who lived here. In 1776 the first European settlers landed and less than a hundred years later the area became something of a Mecca for the Mormons.


Utah is home to many Mormons, but what about these people and their faith? In the 19th century, Mormons mainly lived in Illinois. They were not accepted into society, and to avoid religious persecution, a group led by Brigham Young fled Illinois to the safer grounds of Utah. In 1847 they reached the Salt Lake Valley and established a settlement there. In the years that followed, tens of thousands of Mormon believers fled to northern Utah.

From the moment the US took the territory of Utah from Mexico, there was tension between the Mormons and the federal government. The Mormons wanted Utah to be incorporated into the US, but the government wouldn’t allow it because the Mormons still practiced polygamy. Marrying multiple partners was taboo in the rest of the US and this led to problems.

The end of the 19th proved a turning point when Wilford Woodruff, then president of the Mormon Church, reported that he had seen God. God had then made it clear to him that polygamy had to be renounced and that American law had to be followed. Utah eventually joined the US in 1896.


Beginning in 1900, Utah began to gain national and international fame for the state’s beautiful wildlife. Zion and Bryce Canyon National Parks were established and Utah’s first ski resorts were built in the 1930s. Beginning in the 1970s, Utah’s cities began to grow more rapidly. Still, certain parts of the state continue to expand, unfortunately at the expense of nature.

Utah Geography