The Mountain Time Zone is one of nine standard time zones used all around the United States and territories owned by the U.S. This time zone covers the western half of the central United States. The name of the time zone comes from the fact that one of North America's largest and most well-known mountain ranges, the Rocky Mountains, is almost entirely located within this zone. The Mountain Time Zone, as well as other US time zones, was introduced in the late 19th century. What is Mountain Time? CDC information for travelers. Hours/availability may have changed.

1.Mountain Time

Mountain Time
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The zone covers five states in their entirety, as well as applying in small to large areas of ten other states. Mountain Time is also observed in several states of Mexico, as well as some provinces and territories of Canada. The Mountain Time Zone is one of the four major time zones covering the contiguous United States. The biggest city covered by the Mountain Time Zone is Phoenix, which is the capital of Arizona. The Phoenix metropolitan area is the biggest of its kind in the Mountain Time Zone, and other major US cities in the zone include Denver, Colorado and El Paso, Texas.

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2.History of Time Zones in the US

History of Time Zones in the US
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Time zones didn’t exist when the United States was colonized and founded. Back then, people simply used the sun’s position to tell the time and would adjust their clocks accordingly as the sun crossed the meridian over their town or city. This meant that local time would differ greatly from one part of a state to the next and caused a lot of issues.

The most problematic consequences of having no time zones came when railroads were introduced all around the US. Trains need to run on schedules and timetables, but it was impossible for any proper schedules to be organized as time would be kept differently from one station to the next, meaning that passengers and commuters could never really know when a train was going to arrive in a certain place. The railroad authorities introduced their own set of 100 time zones to compensate for this problem, but issues still abounded.

In order to help make everything much simpler, four major time zones were defined and introduced in 1883, on November 18 to be exact. On that day, telegraph signals were sent out to major cities all around the nation, instructing them of the precise time in their zone. The four major zones of Pacific, Mountain, Central, and Eastern were established and became the norm for the US, while other time zones were later added for additional states and territories like Alaska, Hawaii, and Samoa.

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3.Details of the Mountain Time Zone

Details of the Mountain Time Zone
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The Mountain Time Zone is known simply as MT. Mountain Standard Time (MST) is used from November through to March in the US and Canada and is seven hours behind Coordinated Universal Time (UTC). Mountain Daylight Time (MDT), meanwhile, is used throughout the rest of the year during daylight savings periods and is six hours behind UTC. The state of Arizona, however, does not use MDT.

Colorado, Montana, New Mexico, Wyoming, and Utah are entirely contained within the Mountain Time Zone. Ten additional states (Arizona, Nevada, Texas, Kansas, Idaho, Oregon, Nebraska, Oklahoma, North Dakota, and South Dakota) are partially or majorly covered by the zone. In Mexico, five states and some islands are included in the Mountain Time Zone. Up in Canada, all of the Alberta province observes Mountain Time, and parts of British Columbia, Northwest Territories, Nunavut, and Saskatchewan also fit into this time zone.

Daylight Savings Time in the Mountain Time Zone

Daylight savings time was introduced in 1966 in time with the Uniform Time Act, designed to help save energy and allow people to enjoy more sunlight in summer evenings. The idea was first proposed by Benjamin Franklin in the 1700s and had been introduced in other countries before arriving in America. Originally, daylight savings applied from the first Sunday of April to the last Sunday in October.

Since then, the Energy Policy Act of 2005 has changed the rules for daylight savings time, extending the period of daylight savings from the second Sunday of March to the first Sunday of November. Almost all areas within the Mountain Time Zone switch to MDT during this period. The state of Arizona is one of the only US states to not use this system and neither does the state of Sonora in Mexico. These areas technically therefore observe MST all year long.

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Mountain Time Zone

When Does Time Change in Spring?

Since 2007, daylight saving time or DST (often mistakenly coined as daylight savings time) is fixed to start on the 2nd Sunday of March and goes on until the 1st Sunday of November. For 2018, DST begins on March 11 and is set to end on November 4. In 2017, DST started on March 12 and ended on November 5.

Whether you come from a place that observed DST or not, you might have wondered about the practice at some point in your life. The observance of daylight saving time does indeed have a pretty interesting history, dating back to the days of WWI. There have been pushes and pulls on whether people should continue to practice it and whether it’s still necessary today. As a matter of fact, people have been lobbying to get rid of DST in the US because it’s allegedly causing so much confusion.

Needless to say, DST’s long history with society has brought about some very interesting facts about it. Here are 10 things that you probably didn’t know about the practice:

1. Benjamin Franklin Suggested DST Partly as a Joke

Everyone knows that DST was first suggested by Benjamin Franklin. But many people didn’t know that he did so by writing a satirical essay about it. The satire spoke of how people would be able to easily adjust to the changes and that it would make them more willing to go to bed at 8:00 PM and be more capable of waking up at 4:00 AM since they got eight hours of sleep. He also mentioned daylight saving as one of the many ways to save on resource, including taxing shutters, saving candles, limited coach travel after dark to emergencies only, and even firing cannons at dawn to wake people up.

According to Franklin, he wrote the piece to make fun of the French, who he saw as lazy, pointing at how much sunlight is wasted every day. It turns out people actually took the suggestion to heart.

2. The Credit to the Idea Actually Went to a Bug Collector

The actual instance of daylight saving time was quite peculiar. There was an entomologist who works at a post office during the day and hunts for bugs at night. He got frustrated with how the sun would set too soon during the summer and thought of setting the clocks in advance would give him more time to hunt for bugs with sunlight. This would also give him more time to do other things as well. He would then switch the clocks back during winter when bugs (and people) were rarely found outdoors.

The idea was proposed in New Zealand back in 1895, but the scientific society considered it pointless and complicated. They had no idea that Daylight Saving Time would be a thing all over the world two decades later.

3. Daylight Saving Became Law in WWI

Germany was the first country to have officially used DST back in 1916. This was brought about by the need to conserve coal in the midst of World War I. Soon enough, the British and other European nations followed suit. By 1918, the concept had reached the United States. One year after they entered the war, America started practicing DST in order to save electricity. However, most of the countries who observed DST stopped doing so when the war ended.

4. The Idea Was Brought Back Due to the Energy Crisis

After observance of DST ceased after WWI, the United States reconsidered it in the 1970s when the issue of energy conservation become a hot topic once more. This was because of an oil embargo back in 1973 that resulted in the country’s energy crisis, prompting the government to find ways to reduce the public’s consumption of energy. DST was then imposed in 1974 to help reduce consumption of energy especially during winter. Not everyone was on board with the idea, though, as many families had to deal with having to send their kids to school before sunrise.

5. Some Say that DST Actually Wastes Energy

Although daylight saving time was intended as a strategy to save time, some researchers have shown that it might actually have an opposite effect. It was found that while setting DST to two years earlier would reduce energy consumption, this would be offset by the fact that heating and air conditioning costs would tend to go up. Plus, the extra hour of daylight only seems to matter when people actually used it by going out to enjoy it.

6. DST is Also Thought to be a Health Hazard

While DST has its perks in terms of saving energy costs, there has been some discussion on its impact on human health. Some studies have shown that extra hours of sleep lost due to DST can affect people’s health in the long term, since loss of sleep have been associated with things like stroke, heart attack, and weaker immune systems overall. It’s not just about the loss of sleep though - it’s more of the change in sleeping pattern.

7. Thankfully, DST has other Benefits

Fortunately, DST isn’t all bad news sans the energy saving effect. One of the most notable benefits to DST is that it has been associated with a drop in crime rates. In a 2015 study, the daily number of robberies has dropped by approximately 7% after the start of DST in the spring season. Much of this was associated with the fact that the streets stayed lit even during the evening hours.

8. There’s a Reason Why is Starts at 2:00 AM

It’s not just a randomly picked hour that people agreed upon. The adjustment on the time was pegged at 2:00 AM because that was the time when most people would hopefully not be able to notice it, allowing them to transition smoothly.

DST is indeed an interesting concept. Hopefully the facts above gave you more insight about the topic.

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When Does the Time Change in Fall?

During the fall season, the clocks fall back on November 4, 2011, which is the end of the season for daylight saving time. The clocks are changed at exactly 2:00 AM, giving people and extra hour of sleep.

About Daylight Saving Time

March 11 marked the day when many Americans set their clocks to move an hour in advance as the country starts daylight saving time (often erroneously referred to as daylight “savings” time) for the year, allowing everyone to have an extra hour in their days. During this time, clocks change during the fall season to help everyone conserve energy, even though people continue to lobby before the Senate to ultimately stop the practice.

Here’s a quick look at when DST starts and ends in the year, how it all started, and why we continue to observe it. There are also some facts about it you might be interested to know about as well.

Below is a look at when daylight saving time starts and ends during the year, its history, why we have it now and some myths and interesting facts about the time change.

When it All Starts and Ends

Daylight saving time has historically been set during the summer months and ended during winter, although the official dates change from time to time through official legislation.

Since 2007, DST starts in the US on the 2nd Sunday of March. By then, people will have to move their clocks an hour forward at 2:00 AM on local standard time. As a result, the clocks will then read 3:00 AM. It will then end on the 1st Sunday of November, when people move the clocks back at 2:00 AM so that it will read 1:00 AM.

In the year 2017, DST started on March 12 and went on until November 5.

How did DST Start?

The person you should thank (or blame, depending on your point of view on the matter) is Benjamin Franklin. He came up with the idea of resetting clocks during the summer months as a means of conserving energy such as coal. By pushing the clock an hour in advance, people were able to make use of the extra daylight hour rather than having to consume energy on lighting.

Even then, DST was yet to be official. It still took a century for it to take effect. Germany didn’t have DST until May 1916, which they started in order to save up on fuel back when it was still World War I. This was followed by the rest of Europe. By 1918, the United States followed suit.

It wasn’t until after WWI that the crazy history of DST started to surface. Then President Woodrow Wilson wanted the practice to go on after the war, but it was heavily opposed by farmers and members of the rural community, saying that it would result in them losing an hour of daylight. This is contrary to the popular belief that DST was intended to help the farmers. So DST had to be abolished until the next war came along. During WWII, President Franklin Roosevelt brought back DST all year round, and officially referred to it as “War Time.”

Soon, WWII ended and the question of whether DST was to be continued became a concern again. But this time, the US gave its different states and towns the option to observe DST or not, thinking it would be a better solution for all. Unfortunately, they were wrong, as it caused its own brand of chaos. In fact, they had to legislate the Uniform Time Act in 1966 just to set things in order. The law provided that any state which observed DST (of the state’s own choice, of course) would have to follow a uniform protocol. Back then, the protocol was that DST would start on the 1st Sunday of April until the last Sunday of October.

Then came the Energy Policy Act of 2005 (which came to effect only in 2007). The law expanded the period of DST to what it is today.

Why do We Still Observe DST?

Sources show that less than 40% of the word actually observes DST nowadays. That means, however, that 60% of the world’s countries still do. Much of this is because of their geographical location. When the Earth moves and cycles through winter, spring, and summer, the days tend to get longer because of the way the planet is angled relative to the sun. This is also the reason why some countries have four seasons while others don’t.

As a result of this cycle, regions that are far from the equator or closer to the poles of the Earth have good reason to follow DST. Simply put, they have more or less sunlight than the rest of the world - something that they have to adjust to.

Some researchers have also linked DST with reduced traffic related incidents, and this is explained by the fact that fewer cars are out during the dark. Full-time workers also benefit from having more daylight in one way or another.

The practice of DST has a very interesting history, and learning about it will definitely make you better understand what otherwise seems to be a strange culture. Until today, people still continue to have misconceptions about DST.

Although there are people who are already protesting the practice of DST, the fact remains that some US states still follow it. If you happen to be moving or traveling to a US state, make sure to check if they follow DST and when they observe it. This is so that you can adjust accordingly and don’t end up confused by the time and when people start their day and end their work.

Remember, starting and ending DST means moving forward or falling back an hour at 2:00 AM, respectively. For the fall season, the time falls back by an hour, which is when DST season ends.

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