Vernal, Utah- One of the Best Small Towns
I asked Google for the Best Small Towns in America…up came Vernal, the fastest growing micro city in the U.S. Enjoy the pictures on the link above. Senior travelers will find Vernal, the county seat, in northeastern Utah, about 175 miles east of Salt Lake City and 20 miles west of the Colorado border. The population runs just over 9,000.
Vernal is located in the Uintah Basin, bordered on the north by the Uintah Mountains, one of the relatively few mountain ranges which lie in an east-west rather than the usual north to south direction.
The area was first settled on June 6, 1878 by David Johnston and his family. At that time, it was known as the Bench. The other early settlers include Alva Hatch, his father Jeremiah Hatch, and their families.
Seniors Find Great Arts And Rodeo
The local Chamber of Commerce wants senior visitors to know that the area offers spectacular beauty, impressive vistas, Fremont Indian Art, Jurassic Era Fossils and views of some of the earth’s oldest rock formations.
Vernal is also rich in the arts, with the Uintah Arts Council providing year-round cultural events including the Community Concert Series and the popular Outlaw Trial Theater.
Vernal also hosts one of the largest PRCA rodeo’s in the United States. Held each July, the Dinosaur Roundup Rodeo has been voted one of the best outdoor rodeo’s for several years. Today kayaking and mountain biking rule in and around Vernal.
Seniors Enjoy Outdoor Adventures
Vernal, unlike many Utah towns, was not settled by Mormons. Brigham Young sent a scouting party to Uintah Basin in 1861 and received word back the area was good for nothing but nomad purposes, hunting grounds for Indians and “to hold the world together.”
So what attracts senior visitors to Vernal, Utah? Well there is the Dinosaur National Monument, Western Heritage Museum, Daughters of Utah Pioneers Museum, and Thorne Museum and Studio. And for parks, the Red Fleet State Park, Steinaker State Park, and Utah Field House of Natural History State Park are nearby.
TripAdvisor suggests a visit to Utah Field House of Natural History State Park with, perhaps, for the more adventurous of you to consider the Don Hatch River Day Excursions on the Colorado River. Sounds wet to me!
Senior hikers, toss in your hiking boots and consider the McConkie Ranch Petroglyph Trail, a 4 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail rated moderate. Dinosaur Gardens contain 14 life-size prehistoric creatures in a natural setting.
Seniors, enjoy all the scenic wonder and many amenities that one of the Best Small Cities in America offers. -jeb