Located in the western half of the United States, with borders to Wyoming, Idaho, Colorado, Nevada, and Arizona, Utah is the 13th biggest state in terms of surface area but only the 31st most populous, making it one of the least densely populated states of all. It was the 45th state to become a part of the United States and earned this status on January 4 of 1896. Approximately 3 million people live in Utah, with the vast majority of the state's population living in a section in the northern part of the state known as the Wasatch Front.
Utah is known for its strength in industries like technology, research, and education, and is also a popular spot for outdoor recreation. The state additionally has a strong association with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, also known as the Mormon Church, with over 60% of the state's residents identifying as Mormons. This religion has a big influence on the state's culture and lifestyle, with the headquarters of the Mormon Church being located in the state capital of Salt Lake City. Utah has the unique distinction of being the only American state in which over 50% of the population follows the same church.
It also has the distinction of having the third highest elevation in the country. The mean elevation of Utah is 6,100 feet (1,860 m), which is only lower than Colorado and Wyoming. The average elevation in the United States overall is approximately 2,500 feet (760 m), so the elevation of Utah is much higher than the national average and the state is also known for having a huge difference in elevation between its highest and lowest points due to its varied landscapes, which include wetlands, canyons, mountains, deserts, and more.
Highest and Lowest Elevations in Utah
The highest point in all of the state of Utah is Kings Peak. Kings Peak is located among the Uinta Mountains in the Ashley National Forest, approximately 79 miles away from the Utah state capital of Salt Lake City. Kings Peak has an elevation of 13,534 feet (4,125 m), putting it in the top 100 highest peaks in all of North America. It's the seventh highest state high point and was named after Clarence King, a local geologist who became the first ever director of the United States Geological Survey from 1879 through to 1881. Kings Peak is classed as one of the toughest state high points to ascend.
The lowest point in the state of Utah is Beaver Dam Wash. This is a season stream that flows close to the Utah-Nevada state border and crosses over the Utah-Arizona state border. Near the Arizona border is where Beaver Dam Wash is at its lowest point. In this area, it has an elevation of 2,180 feet (664 m) and is officially classed as the state's lowest elevation point. The area around Beaver Dam Wash is renowned for its rich array of wildlife, including various forms of plants, lizards, birds, mammals, and more.
Other Key Elevation Points in Utah
The incorporated town or city with the highest elevation in the state of Utah is Brian Head. This little town is located in Iron County in the southwestern part of the state. It has a very small population of less than 100 people and an extremely high elevation of 9,800 feet (2,987 m). Brian Head is a popular ski resort town, with the nearby Brian Head Ski Resort offering more than 70 runs and attracting visitors from Utah and surrounding states.
The incorporated town or city with the lowest elevation in the state of Utah is Santa Clara. Located on the Santa Clara Creek in Washington County, Santa Clara is found in the southwestern part of Utah, just like Brian Head, showing how the elevation in the state can vary so hugely across a relatively short distance. The elevation of Santa Clara is just 2,762 feet (842 m), which means it isn’t much higher than the state’s lowest point at Beaver Dam Wash.
Other key elevation points in Utah include some of the state’s biggest and most important cities. The capital of the state is Salt Lake City, which has an elevation of 4,226 feet (1,288 m). Other major cities around Utah include West Valley City, which is situated at an elevation of 4,304 feet (1,312 m), Provo, which has an elevation of 4,551 feet (1,387 m), and West Jordan, which has an elevation of 4,373 feet (1,333 m).