Summer is just around the corner, and here in Carbon County, Utah, we're gearing up for a season filled with endless adventure, exploration and connection. From lazy river tubing to scenic bike rides and uncovering the wonders of Nine Mile Canyon, there's something for everyone to enjoy. So sit back, relax, and let us be your guide to making the most of your summer trip to Carbon County.

Where is The Corridor?

Centrally located, The Corridor is at Utah’s core and easy to reach from any direction. Driving is the easiest way to reach the area. 

  • 2 Hours drive South of Salt Lake City, UT
  • 2.5 Hours drive west of Grand Junction, CO
  • 2 Hours drive from Moab, UT

Road trip lovers and view chasers can start or end their trip in The Corridor taking the Roundabout Way. The 180-mile beautiful loop takes travelers through centuries-old rock art, the remnants of past coal and uranium mining, rocky summits, slot canyons, dinosaur fossils and premier golf courses. There is a loop for every traveler:
Golf Day Away, Relaxing Weekend, Regional History, Natural History. Find your new favorite Roundabout way on our website.

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Relaxing Weekend Roundabout Way In Carbon County

Take it Easy: Enjoying the Leisurely Side of Carbon County

Let's start with the art of taking it easy. Picture yourself floating down the tranquil waters of the Price River, surrounded by stunning landscapes and gentle currents. Tubing along the Price River is a quintessential summer experience in Carbon County, offering a perfect blend of relaxation and adventure. Visitors can rent a tube or raft from the Carbon County Recreation Center.

For a leisurely stroll, head to downtown Helper, UT. This charming town boasts a rich history and vibrant arts scene. Take a leisurely walk along the streets lined with historic buildings, art galleries, and eclectic shops. Don't forget to grab a bite to eat at one of the local eateries or cafes for a taste of authentic Utah cuisine.

And when it comes to lakeside relaxation, Carbon County has you covered. Spend a day at Scofield State Park, Huntington Lake, Price Canyon Recreation Area, or Millsite Reservoir, where you can soak up the sun, go for a swim, or try your hand at fishing. With breathtaking views and plenty of recreational activities, these lakes are the perfect spot to unwind and enjoy the great outdoors.

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                                                Helper Main Street I Carbon County

Exploring Nine Mile Canyon: Tips and Tricks

Now, let's venture into the mesmerizing landscape of Nine Mile Canyon. Known as the "World's Longest Outdoor Art Gallery," Nine Mile Canyon is a treasure trove of ancient rock art, historic sites, and stunning vistas. Whether you're a history buff, outdoor enthusiast, or avid photographer, exploring Nine Mile Canyon is an experience not to be missed.

For those driving through the canyon, be sure to take advantage of the free audio tour, providing fascinating insights into the canyon's history and cultural significance. As you make your way through the canyon, keep an eye out for hiking trails that lead to hidden gems and historic landmarks, such as the famous Fremont petroglyphs.

For a more adventurous experience, consider hitting the trails on an OHV (Off-Highway Vehicle) adventure. With miles of designated OHV routes, Nine Mile Canyon offers thrilling opportunities to explore its rugged terrain and remote beauty.

Making it Count

Whether you are attracted to The Corridor for its outdoor recreation or small town charm, there is always something to fill your trip itinerary. Summer brings more than the sun out to play, summer festivals, art shows, live music, the rodeo, and racing at Desert Thunder Raceway makes every week the perfect time to come and enjoy. 

See the County’s events calendar for more upcoming events

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Plan Your Adventure   

Ready to embark on your summer adventure in Carbon County? Be sure to check out the tours offered by the County's Recreation Complex, including guided excursions to Nine Mile Canyon and other attractions like Gordon Creek Falls. Whether you're seeking relaxation or adventure, Carbon County has everything you need for an unforgettable summer getaway.

So pack your bags, grab your sunscreen, book your hotel, and get ready to experience the best of summer in Carbon County, Utah. We'll see you on the river, the trails, and everywhere in between! 

Summer Starts Here. See you in The Corridor.

For more travel itineraries and trip planning materials request free visitors guides, and sign up for our monthly email newsletter.

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Nestled in the heart of Utah lies the Carbon Corridor: a gateway to the storied history of the American Southwest. Just a short drive from Salt Lake City and Grand Junction, Colorado, this corridor offers an immersive journey through time. From abandoned mining camps to ancient rock art in Nine Mile Canyon, the Carbon Corridor promises a captivating experience for history enthusiasts and adventurers alike. Welcome to a land where history lives and adventure awaits.

Getting to Carbon County

The Carbon Corridor’s central location is a beautiful drive just two hours south of Salt Lake City and two and a half hours west from Grand Junction, CO.

For those really wanting to take the historic route, you can take the Denver and Rio Grande Railroad that connects Colorado to Utah for scenic views and a beautiful ride via Amtrak. Trains come right into Helper, UT from Denver, CO or Salt Lake City, UT. Those traveling from further east can make it a multi-stop trip by staying over in Denver or Omaha.

Where To Start

Visitor Center

​​155 E Main St, Price, UT

If there is anywhere to begin a trip to The Corridor, it should be the visitors’ center. Located in Price, UT, this center provides travel guides, food tours, and even a book shop. The best part is that it is adjacent to the USU Eastern Prehistoric Museum, making it easy to start your trip at the dawn of time.

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Helper Museum

294 S Main St, Helper, UT

Your next stop takes you into historic downtown Helper to the Helper Museum. This four-floor and fully filled museum tells the story of the men who worked in The Corrridor’s underground mines between 1880-1950. The museum takes visitors through what life was like for the families that flocked to the area during the time from 27 different countries. 

Visitors can hear oral histories by docents and museum curators. The gift shop features booklets that make for great self-guided tours up Springs Canyon, where the ghost town of Storrs lays vacant.

This is a great stop for adults and children. The basement of the museum takes visitors right into a mining tunnel replica. Learn about the various nationalities that built the mines, see the tools they used throughout the years, and read about the mining explosions of 1924 at Castle Gate. 

 

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Stepping Into History

The Carbon Corridor is rich with history, as you will soon find out, and there are many ways that visitors can walk through the American Southwest’s history without even opening a book. 

Castle Gate Cemetery

What used to be the grounds of the Castle Gate Mines has been transformed into a cemetery memorial for the miners who lost their lives in the mine explosions of 1924. Now, a hundred years later,  visitors can pay their respects and reflect on the disaster that transformed mining safety practices and the lives of the families of The Corridor.

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Ghost Towns

Well-known for an abundance of outdoor recreation and beauty, The Corridor also has a spooky side. Out of the 136 ghost towns in Utah, Carbon County has the most with 13 deserted sites. It does not get more “wild west” than walking through the ghost towns dating back to 1880-1940s. Many of the ghost towns in Carbon County were once mining towns. Here are a few must-sees:

Clear Creek Mining Camp

Situated at 8,200 feet, this mining camp was the highest in elevation out of all of Utah’s mining camps. What used to be a mining town has now been repurposed as a youth camp. The site is located at the south end of State Route 96, six miles south of Scofield.

Coal City/Dempsey

Abandoned in 1940, few buildings and deteriorating structures can be found here. Be sure to bring your hiking boots, because no motorized vehicles are allowed through the area. Coal City is located almost nine miles west of US-6/191 on Consumers Road (UT-290/139).

Storrs

Situated in Spring Canyon, Storrs has been known by locals to be haunted. Now mostly privately owned, visitors can view mining remnants and buildings from County Road. Please be respectful of private property and no trespassing signage.

Harper

Log cabins and buildings still remain of this ghost town on the Nine Mile Canyon Backcountry Byway, about 30 miles north of Hwy 6/191 on Soldier Creek Road near Wellington. 

Nine Mile Canyon

We can't talk about history without bringing up Nine Mile Canyon. Twenty miles north of Wellington, this canyon’s walls are covered with art and storytelling from centuries ago, dating back to the Fremont Indians of the area. The stories engraved into the beautiful scenery make up the world’s longest art gallery.

To learn more about the Canyon and get the most out of your hike, we encourage visitors to book a tour. Tours can be booked through the Carbon Events and Recreation Complex by calling (435) 636-3701. There is also a free self-guided audio tour for those driving through the canyon. The two-hour drive takes visitors through a GPS-triggered tour that points out important rock art sites. 

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Where To Stay

Whether you are most excited about hiking through the ghost towns of The Corridor or learning about the mining and railroad by checking out the Helper Museum, there is no shortage of fun ways to immerse yourself in history. The Corridor has an array of lodging options that range from hotels, ranches, lodges, and short-term rentals. 

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Welcome to the winter wonderland of The Carbon Corridor, where the rugged beauty of Carbon County, Utah, is transformed into a snowy playground for outdoor enthusiasts and history buffs. In this blog, we will guide you through the historic spots and outdoor activities that bring The Corridor to life. From the pristine trails in Scofield State Park to historic downtown Helper, the Carbon Corridor offers a diverse range of experiences perfect for any traveler. 

1. Music at The Rio

If live music is your jam, you really cannot miss a concert or show at The Rio Theater. Located in downtown Helper, The Rio Theater brings concerts to The Corridor from across the country. It is a hidden gem that attracts talent such as Tyler Gould or Folk Hogan for locals and visitors. Grab a cocktail in town, then spend your night dancing to the music in this newly renovated space.To see upcoming events and performances in The Carbon Corridor check out the events calendar.

2. Check out the History

Aside from having plenty of outdoor activities, The Corridor offers visitors a robust history lesson in coal mining, international settlers, and the area’s prehistoric founders. There are many ways to get to know Carbon County's roots. 

Visit USU Eastern’s Prehistoric Museum

If you did not already know, dinosaurs are kinda a big deal in The Corridor, and for a good reason. Dinosaur bones dating back to three billion years ago have been found across the county, and are still being found today! The museum gives visitors the unique experience of not just seeing dinosaurs, but seeing them in their original stomping grounds. With in-house paleontologists and archaeologists, visitors can watch as they sift through artifacts, and piece together the history of the area right before their eyes. 

Families and visitors love stopping by the Prehistoric Museum for its Hall of Archeology dating back to the Ice Age, and the Discovery Area, where children can dig and discover on their own. If the Visitors Center is your first stop in The Corridor, then The Prehistoric Museum has to be your second. Located in the same building as the Visitors Center you can easily go from picking up your trail maps and food guide, to The Hall of Dinosaurs.

Stroll through Historic Downtown Helper

For the culture and history lover, downtown Helper is a dream. And with the cover of freshly fallen snow, the area looks like it is straight out of a storybook. 

Right when you turn the corner onto N. Main St, you will be welcomed with retro signs and unique storefronts. Start your stroll with a hot beverage and locally made pastry from Happiness Within. Their seasonal flavors will keep you warm and cozy as you take in a winter walk in Downtown Helper. 

After, you can pop into the local stores and art galleries that bring the street to life this time of year. The Rio Theater is right downtown making it easy to catch a show after your stroll.

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Downtown Helper Signs
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Visit the Helper Museum

Conveniently located in downtown Helper, the Helper Museum is a donation-based organization to easily stop into.  Here you can learn all about the rich history of mining in Carbon County. Get up close and personal with artifacts, and enjoy four floors learning about the history of SouthEastern Utah. 

Pro-Tip: Make sure you visit the basement, where you can step into a mining tunnel replica, seeing up close the working conditions and wood pillars that held up the dirt while the miners worked. 

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Start Here to Get Outside

The Carbon Corridor is an outdoor lover’s playground in every season. In the summer, The Corridor comes alive with off-roading, climbing, and activities on the water like floating and fishing. As the seasons change, so do the activities. In winter, locals and visitors alike spend their days ice fishing, fat tire biking on our trails, and tearing up the powder on snowmobiles.

Ice Skating:

When the temperatures drop, ice skating becomes a charming and delightful winter activity. Head over to the Fairgrounds Ice Rink in Price for a classic outdoor skating experience. The rink is open to the public and offers a family-friendly atmosphere with rentals available at the Carbon Events & Recreation Complex. Skate rentals are available Monday through Friday, 9:00 am to 5:00 pm.

Snow Shoeing:

For those who prefer the snow rather than ice, snowshoe rentals are available at the Carbon Events & Recreation Complex as well. Hike through Scofield Reservoir without getting snow in your boots to enjoy views of snow-dusted hills. 

Fat Tire Biking:

Fat tire biking has gained popularity as a winter sport, and Carbon County's diverse terrain makes it a fantastic destination for all riders. The Price River Trail, starting in the heart of Price, provides an excellent route for fat tire biking. The trail winds along the Price River, offering a mix of paved and gravel paths.

For those seeking a more challenging ride, explore over 50 miles of trails in the Wood Hill Trail System on the north edge of Price. Remember to dress warmly, as the brisk winter air adds an extra element of excitement to your ride.

Snowmobiling:

Carbon County boasts some of the finest snowmobiling trails in the region, attracting riders of all skill levels. The Scofield State Park and Skyline Drive are popular starting points for snowmobile adventures. The pristine trails wind through snow-covered landscapes, offering breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains and valleys.

For an adrenaline-packed day, explore the groomed trails of Scofield Reservoir. These trails provide a perfect blend of challenge and scenic beauty. Don't forget to check the snow conditions before heading out and ensure you have the proper safety gear for an exhilarating and safe ride.

Whether you come to The Corridor to experience the dense history of the area, or come to recreate, there is something for everyone in the family. Visit Carbon Corridor for more visitor information and trip planning tools.