The weather today was a bit ominous, so we thought we’d try to miss the storms to the north and decided to take a short ride over to Antelope Island. At 42 square miles, it’s the largest of 10 islands located within the Great Salt Lake.
Although I’m sure the native American’s who lived in the area knew about the island, John C. Fremont and Kit Carson are credited with the discovery in 1845. The story goes that they shot a Pronghorn Antelope on the island and in gratitude for the meat, they named it Antelope Island.
It was a beautiful day to be on the bike (if a little chilly in the morning) but that didn’t stop us from cruising over the causeway to visit the Utah State Park. Once on the island, Paul turned left and we proceeded to the Fielding Garr ranch. Although I’ve been to the island before, I’ve never visited the east shore.
Brigham Young sent Fielding Garr to establish a ranch in 1848, when the first permanent structure was built. Within a couple of years Garr had expanded the compound to include an adobe ranch house and stone corrals. The spring at the ranch is the strongest and most consistent of the 40 springs on the island. The ranch was in continuous operation until 1981 (archeological findings indicate that there has been human activity on the island for at least 1,000 years).
I took a few minutes to walk around the ranch and captured some photographs. I couldn’t help but think of my grandparents who worked a ranch that was probably much like this in the 1920s. The ranch house was much like the kind of place I have imagined they must have lived in.
We left the ranch and headed to Buffalo Point for a beautiful view of White Rock Bay before we stopped to eat a buffalo burger for lunch and the trip home. And yes, we did see buffalo (although not any antelope).
The weather turned beautiful for most of the day making it a pleasant ride. I’m convinced that Paul can pick a pretty good destination anytime we get on the bikes.
It will cost you a couple of bucks to cross the causeway to visit the island, but it’s a fun ride.
Click HERE to see more photos of our day on Antelope Island.