Loving Our Lands To Death

Utah is a destination spot for those who want to explore the raw, untouched lands of America. Adventurers seek out Utah to experience the awe of the land by exploring its northern snow-capped mountains or the river-carved canyons of the south.

That is until you arrive at your destination and see a scene of overuse, abuse and crowds. 

In this series, we explore the harm our Utah lands face with the constant "love" we give. Why do filmmakers flock to Utah, what are the effects of continual record-breaking attendance at national parks, and why are we using our lands as a backdrop for our Instagram posts?

Join us as we explore these and more issues in the UPR original series "Loving Our Lands To Death." Premiering June 19 and airing throughout the summer. 

Support for Loving Our Lands To Death is made possible in part by the USU Quinney College of Natural Resources, where students and faculty promote the sustainability of ecosystems and the communities that depend on them. Information can be found here

Car Entrance National Park
Jacob W. Frank / NPS

 

 


 When it comes to public lands in the United States, most citizens agree that they should exist. However, there is less agreement on how they should be funded.

Southern Utah is one of the many locations in Utah used for major films and commercials.
Moab to Monument Valley Film Commission

Utah has been one of the most popular areas in the United States for filmmakers since westerns hit the big screens almost 100 years ago according to experts in the film industry. Is it possible to reap the economic benefits of movies and commercials while preserving Utah’s iconic landscapes used on camera? 

Maynard
Thunderbird Foundation For The Arts

 

Maynard Dixon was a successful western artist, known for his impressionistic works featuring southern Utah and Arizona landscapes. In 1939 he left his home in San Francisco for Mount Carmel, Utah - a small town settlement bordered by national parks and public lands.

Ultimately the National Park Service built a trail to the desired vantage point.
Clément Bardot

My family hosted Japanese exchange students when I was in high school. As a result, I have a bunch of Japanese sisters, one of which is a mountaineer, gear-tester, and all-around outdoorswoman. She loves hot springs and wanted to know which natural hot springs in Utah were good to visit. So I set off to find out. 

Visitors Explore Timpanogos Cave; Timpanogos Cave is one of Utah's National Park sites experiencing increased visitation.
www.nps.gov / National Park Service

Total National Park site visitation saw a six percent increase from 2015 to 2016. Along with increased visitation, parks are facing rising costs of deferred maintenance projects, leading to financial resources being thinly stretched. 

Utah is a destination spot for those who want to explore the raw, untouched lands of America. Adventurers seek out Utah to experience the awe of the land by exploring its northern snow-capped mountains or the river-carved canyons of the south.