Having spent the night at the Flying J in McCammon, Idaho (I-15 at exit 47 – Highway 30) near Hot Lava Springs, we were refreshed and excited to continue our road trip. We headed south on the interstate with the desire to get to cooler weather so we were really didn’t want to waste a whole lot of time on the road but we did make it south and decide to make a side trip to Antelope Island State Park just north of Salt Lake City off the I-25.
This is an amazing place and really broke up the road trip to the point where it was really quite enjoyable. While we were just passing through there are plenty of opportunities to spend the night or even more. There are several campgrounds at Antelope Island State Park and there is even RV camping, however, there are no campsites with electricity. When we were there the temperatures were over 100F degrees (38 Celsius) so I can’t imagine camping without air conditioning in those conditions. No generators allowed probably between 10PM and 8AM or something like that so take note and double check the regulations.
We paid the $10 entry fee and checked out the map. There is an historic ranch at the one end and we decided to do somewhat of a loop and check it out. There’s also a visitors center which we didn’t visit as we were just using this as a stopping point on the road. We tooled around a bit and came upon a scenic pull off and got out to view the great expanses of the salty and sandy beaches. The place was pretty empty and we got a little ways toward the beach before turning around as the horse flies were something fierce.
We continued along, having seen one buffalo, we were hopeful to find more. We eventually wound our way to the historic Fielding Garr Ranch. This really was a great experience and well worth the stop. It was really a treat to see something that hasn’t been so perfectly restored and behind glass and well curated. That was the beauty of this place. There are outdoors areas to wander around, a home, several outparcel buildings, a really cool cellar that was nice and cool and was kept cool by a natural spring at one time. The staff was very helpful and friendly on top of all this. And the history of the ranch and experience visiting it was well worth the time.
I had to check to see if our experience was odd or if there were no other animals on the island other than the one buffalo. Indeed, they say you can expect to see mule deer, bighorn sheep, pronghorn (antelope) and more. Perhaps you’ll be luckier. Still, without seeing any of that, we were very happy with our experience. Allow for at least an hour to visit and if the weather isn’t so hot you can easily spend more time here.
We headed back up the east side of the island and north to the causeway back to the mainland. We had arranged to spend the night at the KOA Springville just south of Provo, Utah that night and it was less than an hour away. There are shops along the way from the island back to the interstate in case you need to pick anything up. We didn’t stop in Salt Lake City and it was amazing how this unpopulated state has nearly its entire population in this one small interstate corridor.
As I mentioned earlier I didn’t expect it to be so hot in this area but it was. So we drove until we got to the campground and knew there would be a pool waiting for us to cool off in. The campground was really quite nice. The backdrop were mountains that were lovely to look at but given how hot it was, I was marveling at how they could possibly have snow on the tops of them.
This is a great KOA and is everything you’d expect. There is also a Flying J at the exit for E 1400 N (that is the name of the street and exit). You’ll also find a Utah State Liquor Store you can walk to from the campground. If we had more time, we’d have traveled around this area and explored some of the towns and Utah Lake and Provo Bay but the heat was here and the whole point of this trip was to hit some cooler temperatures!
After a nice night sleep and some relaxation we headed south where our road trip continued.