Hidden Utah

Explore Hidden Utah and Discover Hidden Gems

Utah mining claims, ghosts in Provo, antler wealth, and chic on the cheap are just a few of the hidden treasures to be found in Utah.


illustration by Chris Bodily

This is our “Hidden Utah” issue. In previous years it was known as our “Buried Treasure” issue. I have discovered that many of Utah’s best treasures lie hidden in plain sight.

There are good reasons to dig under rocks and into mountains. There is gold to be found in abandoned mining claims, and indeed there is buried treasure awaiting rediscovery. Joseph Smith knew this, as did many of his disciples of yesteryear and today. One day they are going to find those golden plates, I just know it. But there are better ways to find treasure, and that’s by opening your eyes up to the treasures to be found in nature. Yes, it sounds trite and cliché, and somewhat lame, but it’s true.

Our new Utah Stories office is a short 10 minutes from Millcreek Canyon. A few mornings a week, I make time to visit the canyon with my dogs, Scamps and Joey. It’s the joy of my life to watch them explore the wilderness. Both are puppies, less than two years old, and if we hike it’s a good day. If we don’t, they become sad and depressed.

Scamps our one-year-old golden retriever
Scamps our one-year-old golden retriever

Scampers name used to be Sadie, but now she answers to “Scamps” only, and she likes it when you emphasize the “AMPS” in Scamps. Put the syllables in the back of your throat. “Sc-AMPS” is what she likes to be called.

Scamps jumps into rivers and over boulders at death defying speed. She is a terror to woodland creatures everywhere. The sound of a squirrel will jolt her into action quicker than a lightning bolt. Her ferocious leaps into the air after squirrels might make an onlooker fear for the fate of the small furry-tailed creatures, but she has never gotten closer to one than 15 feet over her head. The squirrels mock and torment her, making her the butt of their squirrel jokes.

She’s never come close to catching one, and they laugh at her from above, squeaking and chittering amongst themselves in true squirrel fashion. Do they do this to your dog, or is it just Scamps?

Joey doesn’t care about Squirrels and he keeps his cool.

Moments like these make my day. We can seek out “hidden places,” but it’s actually “hidden moments” that offer the greatest treasure; golden nuggets of fun that make my day.

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