Originally named Fort Buenaventura, the city of Ogden was the first permanent settlement by people of European descent in the region that is now Utah. It was established by the trapper Miles Goodyear in 1846 about a mile west of where downtown Ogden is currently located.
A hundred years ago Ogden was a thriving metropolis – a bustling busy railway centre. But with the coming of the diesel engine and the I-15, the town faded into obscurity in the 50’s and 60’s.
However, a new young energetic mayor in 2000 decided that it was time to put Ogden back on the map.
38 year old Matthew Godfrey came up with a plan. He decided that Ogden, at the foot of the Wasatch Mountains, would be transformed into the new adventure-sports capital of America and with the average age in the town at just 29 (there are 81,000 people there) you can see how he had the support of the locals behind him. This is a place that was about to rock…
“Boulder pales in comparison to what we have,” says Godfrey, who took an ‘if you build it, they will come’ approach and green-lighted the construction of two kayak parks (the Class III–IV Ogden and Weber rivers flow right through town); a paved trail network; and a recreation center complete with climbing wall, vertical wind tunnel, and standing surf wave.
Soon after, ski-brand giant Amer moved its HQ to town, along with 20 other
And it’s not stopping there. Next up will be a year-round, holographic ice tower (the brainchild of climbing legend and Ogden native Jeff Lowe), aquatic centers, and a velodrome.
Prominent mountain peaks near Ogden include Mount Ogden to the east and Ben Lomond to the north. The quartzite cliffs above Ogden’s foothills provide a variety of rock climbing routes. An extensive boulder field in the foothills is one of the most popular bouldering sites in the state.
When more than nine inches of snow hits the mountains, Ogden rings the “powder bell” and locals hightail it to uncrowded Snowbasin, 20 minutes away. Come summer, mountain bikers throng to the Shoreline Trail’s 20 miles of foothill singletrack.
Snowbasin is known for fresh powder fields days after a storm, meticulously manicured groomers, endless views and surprisingly short lift lines. With diverse terrain for beginner ease, to challenging expert runs, Snowbasin also features three terrain parks, and 26 km of groomed Nordic trails.
But there’s more than just Snowbasin; Powder Mountain and Wolf Mountain are nearby.
This area is world-renowned for the quality of its snow – remember the 2002 Winter Olympics were held here. The skiing and boarding is guaranteed to be unforgettable.
Anticipated open day for winter this year is 26th November. Hey-ho, back to that time of year again, isn’t that GREAT!
There’s also a Nature Centre, the seriously cool Dinosaur Park with its life-sized dinosaurs in an 8 acre area, the Egyptian Theatre, spectacular mountain trails, and Arts and Musical festivals… this town has something for everyone.
But word on the street is…. “don’t tell too many people about it!”