Visiting the Spiral Jetty

The summer after Marathon Girl and I were married, we took a trip to the north end of the Great Salt Lake to visit Robert Smithson's earthwork Spiral Jetty. At the time, the Spiral Jetty was something most people didn't know about or had no clue how to get there. We drove out and spent an hour walking on salt encrusted rocks amid pink waters and enjoying the silence. Since it had been about 14 years since we went out, we thought it would make a fun day trip to take the kids out to see it.

I knew before we left that the Great Salt Lake was near record low levels but seeing just how low it was really surprised me. As you can see below, the water is at least a half mile from the jetty.


The dry lake bed didn't deter the kids from running out there and walking on the black basalt rocks that the Spiral Jetty is made from.

Apparently the cool thing to do is to write your name on the packed sand between the rocks. As you can see, one of the kids decided to use a pseudonym. He's always been a bit of a joker.

After that the kids wanted to hike out to the lake. About a third of the way to the water, the bottom of the lake bed turned from mud to rock hard salt. 


Near the lake we spotted a glove on a pool waving to the water.


Once we reached the shoreline, the kids had to play in the one small section of mud. Kids will be kids, I guess.

Aside from some minor sunburns, the trip was a success and the kids had a good time.

My favorite part about going out there, however, is how quiet it is. Just the desert, the lake, and the Spiral Jetty. No cell phone service, paved roads, lights or any other sign of civilization. You can sit on the rocks overlooking the area and think. Think without distractions. A place like that is difficult to find today.