Here are some events that may be of interest to mountain folks in the Salt Lake City Area. If you hear of others, please be sure to let us know!

Alta Bird Survey

  • Monday, September 11
  • 8:30am-11:30am
  • Alta Ski Area, 10230 UT-210, Alta, UT 84092

Join Tracy Aviary’s expert birders this summer and fall in search of our feathered friends that call Alta home. Help us expand our bird list with non-breeding bird surveys at Alta.

TreeUtah: Solitude Tree Rescue

  • Tuesday, September 12
  • 6:00pm-8:00pm
  • Solitude Ski Resort

Love trees and getting outside in the Wasatch Mountains? Join us to ‘rescue’…


Last week, we were joined around the campfire by adventurer philanthropists Mike and Lilliana Libecki. While enjoying burritos and tea, we chatted about mountains and life. Freshly back from a trip to Antarctica, the Libeckis were full of stories of their numerous expeditions to some of the most remote places on the planet. At the age of only fourteen, Lilliana has already traveled to 21 countries, and is the youngest girl to backcountry ski in Antarctica. Just recently, The Joyineering Fund, the organization started by Lilliana, has been given official non-profit status. …


One of the more well-known events that the Institute for Mountain Research puts on is Fireside Chats. These give an unparalleled opportunity for students to hear and engage with the stories of selected individuals we choose to tell their stories related to mountains. For our fireside chat on December 1st, we invited the former CEO and founder of Black Diamond, Peter Metcalf. His stories of entrepreneurship, mountaineering, and conservation would offer inspiration to those that attended.

It was one of the first cold nights of winter and much-needed snow had finally fell on the city. To be honest, we weren’t…


by Russell E. Costa

“Oddities explain it — oddities of terrain and oddities of psychology, although oddities of psychology aren’t usually as odd as they first seem. What is really odd is how the terrain and the psychology came together in odd ways.” -Norman Maclean, Young Men and Fire

Upon personal reflection, it seemed that two decades worth of books, classes, and on-snow training had outfitted me with a wealth of information about physical factors — snow, slopes, weather, and so on — that contribute to avalanche;, yet I had received relatively little explicit training about the psychological, social, and…


Late next summer, on August 23rd, while most of the campus is trying to figure out where to go for the first day of classes, 16 students, Professor Jeff Nichols, Professor Brent Olson, and a program coordinator will load a suitcase or two of books, a bunch of camping gear, and themselves into a couple of vans and a trailer. Instead of finding a seat in a classroom, we’ll hit the road on a grand tour of the American West.

We won’t simply be taking in the views and developing endless playlists though. The heart of the trip is an…


By Mariah McCoy

It was in the middle of my 14th interview, at the local reindeer farm, that I realized the subject of discussion was actually present, surrounding me on all sides. Snowpack was visible in the mountaintops of Matanuska Valley, it was pumping up from the underground aquifers to water the herd, running in the stream nearby, and it was latent in the snow machine sitting under a tarp in the driveway, next to the pair of old skis. In Alaska, snow means something to almost everyone, and I wanted to know what my community, the Matanuska Valley, Alaska…


Our new mountain fellows from left to right: Naomi Shapiro, Jordan Romero, and Sally Miller

An IMR collaborative research project

Each summer the Institute for Mountain Research supports a number of student/faculty collaborative research projects. We’ll get updates on the research throughout the summer and the year. In one of these projects, Russ Costa and Jadie Adams will examine the roll of human decision making in avalanche terrain. They describe their project like this:

In an essay presaging the “science wars” of the 1990’s, John Maynard Smith, a British engineer turned theoretical evolutionary biologist and geneticist, noted the following concerning humans’ difficulty in distinguishing between science and myth:

“If, before going into battle, a man…


The Institute for Mountain Research is hosting another fireside chat this Thursday (4/14) at 7:00 in the Amphitheater outside of Jewett. Holly Norton, The State Archeologist for Colorado will mostly be talking about abandoned mines in the Colorado Mountains, but her work covers a lot of areas, so I’m sure the conversation will be wide ranging.

You and your students are welcome to join us for stories around the campfire, s’mores, burritos, cocoa, and (probably) terrible jokes.

I’ve attached a the poster below, and here’s some more detailed info about Holly and what she’ll be talking about.

Holly Norton is…


Here are some events that may be of interest to mountain folks in the Salt Lake City Area. If you know of others, please be sure to let us know, we’ll be sure to update this as well as we find things.

Wild and Scenic Film Festival

  • Location: Brewvies Cinema Pub, 677 S 200 W, Salt Lake City, UT 84101
  • Time: 7:30pm
  • Date: March 1st, 2016

Wasatch Mountain Club Event Calendar

The North American Model (Wasatch Audubon Society Meeting)

Lecture/Discussion about the North American Model for Wildlife Conservation

  • Location: Ogden Nature Center, 966 W 12t Street)
  • Time: 7:00pm
  • Date: Marth 16, 2016

2016 Wasatch Mountain Film Festival (Wasatch Mountain Arts)

Location: Thursday March 21st 2016- Saturday April 9, 2016

Brighton Night Party

  • Location: Brighton Resort
  • Date: February 12th, 2016

Mountain Research

The Institute for Mountain Research at Westminster College | Study Up

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