Why Vernal is the Next Adventure Capital of Utah.

IT’S NO SECRET that Utah is an outdoor lover’s paradise. Thousands of people come to experience the Big Five national parks, hunkering down in Moab to see the red rocks or outside of Zion to hike Angel’s Landing. In the summer, these parks and their surrounding towns are packed with tourists, who are all paying peak prices for accommodation. If you want to avoid the crowds and experience some of the most underrated land Utah has to offer, though, you need to head to Vernal. Located in the northeastern corner of the state, Vernal has traditionally been associated with dinosaur fossils more than adventure. But the area is emerging as a hotspot for all your favorite outdoor activities: hiking, biking, paddling, and climbing. It won’t be long before the outdoor community starts mentioning Vernal in the same breath as Moab as a burgeoning adventure capital. Here are seven epic outdoor experiences you can have in Vernal.

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NICHOLAS MOHNACKY