Oquirrh Mountains
Overview
 
The Oquirrh Mountains (icon) is a mountain range that run north-south for approximately 30 miles (50 km) to form the west side of Utah
Utah
Utah is a state in the Western United States. It was the 45th state to join the Union, on January 4, 1896. Approximately 80% of Utah's 2,763,885 people live along the Wasatch Front, centering on Salt Lake City. This leaves vast expanses of the state nearly uninhabited, making the population the...

's Salt Lake Valley
Salt Lake Valley
Salt Lake Valley is a valley in Salt Lake County in the north-central portion of the U.S. state of Utah. It contains Salt Lake City and many of its suburbs, notably West Valley City, Murray, Sandy, and West Jordan; its total population is 1,029,655 as of 2010...

, separating it from Tooele Valley. The range begins in northwest Utah County and stops at the south shore of the Great Salt Lake
Great Salt Lake
The Great Salt Lake, located in the northern part of the U.S. state of Utah, is the largest salt water lake in the western hemisphere, the fourth-largest terminal lake in the world. In an average year the lake covers an area of around , but the lake's size fluctuates substantially due to its...

. The highest elevation is Flat Top Mountain at 10,620 ft (3,237 m). The name Oquirrh was taken from the Ute
Ute
-Tribes:*Ute people, an American Indian people now living primarily in Utah and Colorado**Southern Ute Indian Tribe of the Southern Ute Reservation, Colorado**Ute Indian Tribe of the Uintah and Ouray Reservation, Utah...

 word meaning "shining."
The mountains have been mined for gold
Gold
Gold is a chemical element with the symbol Au and an atomic number of 79. Gold is a dense, soft, shiny, malleable and ductile metal. Pure gold has a bright yellow color and luster traditionally considered attractive, which it maintains without oxidizing in air or water. Chemically, gold is a...

, silver
Silver
Silver is a metallic chemical element with the chemical symbol Ag and atomic number 47. A soft, white, lustrous transition metal, it has the highest electrical conductivity of any element and the highest thermal conductivity of any metal...

, lead
Lead
Lead is a main-group element in the carbon group with the symbol Pb and atomic number 82. Lead is a soft, malleable poor metal. It is also counted as one of the heavy metals. Metallic lead has a bluish-white color after being freshly cut, but it soon tarnishes to a dull grayish color when exposed...

, and most famously for copper
Copper
Copper is a chemical element with the symbol Cu and atomic number 29. It is a ductile metal with very high thermal and electrical conductivity. Pure copper is soft and malleable; an exposed surface has a reddish-orange tarnish...

, as home of the porphyry copper deposit
Porphyry copper deposit
Porphyry copper deposits are copper orebodies which are associated with porphyritic intrusive rocks and the fluids that accompany them during the transition and cooling from magma to rock. Circulating surface water or underground fluids may interact with the plutonic fluids...

 at Bingham Canyon Mine
Bingham Canyon Mine
The Bingham Canyon Mine, also known as the Kennecott Copper Mine, is an open-pit mining operation extracting a large porphyry copper deposit southwest of Salt Lake City, Utah, USA, in the Oquirrh Mountains. It is the deepest open-pit mine in the world. The mine is owned by Rio Tinto Group, an...

, one of the world's largest open pit mines.
Encyclopedia
The Oquirrh Mountains (icon) is a mountain range that run north-south for approximately 30 miles (50 km) to form the west side of Utah
Utah
Utah is a state in the Western United States. It was the 45th state to join the Union, on January 4, 1896. Approximately 80% of Utah's 2,763,885 people live along the Wasatch Front, centering on Salt Lake City. This leaves vast expanses of the state nearly uninhabited, making the population the...

's Salt Lake Valley
Salt Lake Valley
Salt Lake Valley is a valley in Salt Lake County in the north-central portion of the U.S. state of Utah. It contains Salt Lake City and many of its suburbs, notably West Valley City, Murray, Sandy, and West Jordan; its total population is 1,029,655 as of 2010...

, separating it from Tooele Valley. The range begins in northwest Utah County and stops at the south shore of the Great Salt Lake
Great Salt Lake
The Great Salt Lake, located in the northern part of the U.S. state of Utah, is the largest salt water lake in the western hemisphere, the fourth-largest terminal lake in the world. In an average year the lake covers an area of around , but the lake's size fluctuates substantially due to its...

. The highest elevation is Flat Top Mountain at 10,620 ft (3,237 m). The name Oquirrh was taken from the Ute
Ute
-Tribes:*Ute people, an American Indian people now living primarily in Utah and Colorado**Southern Ute Indian Tribe of the Southern Ute Reservation, Colorado**Ute Indian Tribe of the Uintah and Ouray Reservation, Utah...

 word meaning "shining."
The mountains have been mined for gold
Gold
Gold is a chemical element with the symbol Au and an atomic number of 79. Gold is a dense, soft, shiny, malleable and ductile metal. Pure gold has a bright yellow color and luster traditionally considered attractive, which it maintains without oxidizing in air or water. Chemically, gold is a...

, silver
Silver
Silver is a metallic chemical element with the chemical symbol Ag and atomic number 47. A soft, white, lustrous transition metal, it has the highest electrical conductivity of any element and the highest thermal conductivity of any metal...

, lead
Lead
Lead is a main-group element in the carbon group with the symbol Pb and atomic number 82. Lead is a soft, malleable poor metal. It is also counted as one of the heavy metals. Metallic lead has a bluish-white color after being freshly cut, but it soon tarnishes to a dull grayish color when exposed...

, and most famously for copper
Copper
Copper is a chemical element with the symbol Cu and atomic number 29. It is a ductile metal with very high thermal and electrical conductivity. Pure copper is soft and malleable; an exposed surface has a reddish-orange tarnish...

, as home of the porphyry copper deposit
Porphyry copper deposit
Porphyry copper deposits are copper orebodies which are associated with porphyritic intrusive rocks and the fluids that accompany them during the transition and cooling from magma to rock. Circulating surface water or underground fluids may interact with the plutonic fluids...

 at Bingham Canyon Mine
Bingham Canyon Mine
The Bingham Canyon Mine, also known as the Kennecott Copper Mine, is an open-pit mining operation extracting a large porphyry copper deposit southwest of Salt Lake City, Utah, USA, in the Oquirrh Mountains. It is the deepest open-pit mine in the world. The mine is owned by Rio Tinto Group, an...

, one of the world's largest open pit mines. As seen from Salt Lake City, the view of the mountain range is dominated by the displaced rock material (known as "spoils") dug from the Kennecott mine. At the north end of the range is Kennecott's smelter complex which refines ore concentrates from the mine into useful metals. Dark colored tailings from past metal refining at the complex can be observed from the adjacent freeway, I-80. The value of the minerals taken from the range has been estimated to far exceed the combined value of those taken in the California, Nevada, and Klondike gold and silver rushes.

In the winter months, the mountains become home to a small population of bald eagle
Bald Eagle
The Bald Eagle is a bird of prey found in North America. It is the national bird and symbol of the United States of America. This sea eagle has two known sub-species and forms a species pair with the White-tailed Eagle...

s, which can often be found in the cliffs on the west side of the range down to the reservoir near the town of Stockton
Stockton, Utah
Stockton is a town in Tooele County, Utah, United States. It is part of the Salt Lake City, Utah Metropolitan Statistical Area. The population was 616 at the 2010 census.-Geography:Stockton is located at ....

.

The range has many canyons and dense forests, consisting mainly of conifers and aspen. The area is also home to thriving populations of butterflies, deer, mountain lions, and squirrels. Two of the most popular canyons are Yellow Fork Canyon and Butterfield Canyon. Yellow Fork Canyon is home to a trail administered by Salt Lake County and numerous gated communities. Butterfield Canyon contains a paved road (with the exception of a 1/4 mile portion on the Tooele
Tooele, Utah
Tooele is a city in Tooele County in the U.S. state of Utah. It is part of the Salt Lake City, Utah, Metropolitan Statistical Area. The population was 22,502 at the 2000 census, and 30,708 as of the 2009 estimates. It is the county seat of Tooele County...

 side that is well maintained dirt) that connects Tooele
Tooele, Utah
Tooele is a city in Tooele County in the U.S. state of Utah. It is part of the Salt Lake City, Utah, Metropolitan Statistical Area. The population was 22,502 at the 2000 census, and 30,708 as of the 2009 estimates. It is the county seat of Tooele County...

 with Herriman
Herriman, Utah
Herriman is a city in southwestern Salt Lake County, Utah, United States. The population was 21,785 as of the 2010 census. Although Herriman was a town in 2000, it has since been classified as a fifth-class city by state law. The city has experienced rapid growth since incorporation in 1999, as its...

. Butterfield Canyon road climbs to a summit of 9,180 ft. above sea level. At night the mouth of the canyon is a dangerous area as large herds of deer move into the farmlands for feeding.

The north end of the mountain range features a peak known as Farnsworth Peak
Farnsworth Peak
Farnsworth Peak is a peak located on the northern end of the Oquirrh Mountain range, approximately south west of Salt Lake City, Utah. The mountain is named for Philo Farnsworth, the inventor of the first completely electronic television. It is used mainly for radio and television transmission,...

 which houses almost all Salt Lake City FM
Frequency modulation
In telecommunications and signal processing, frequency modulation conveys information over a carrier wave by varying its instantaneous frequency. This contrasts with amplitude modulation, in which the amplitude of the carrier is varied while its frequency remains constant...

 and TV
Television
Television is a telecommunication medium for transmitting and receiving moving images that can be monochrome or colored, with accompanying sound...

 station transmitters. The peak is also used for emergency communications (such as police, fire
Fire department
A fire department or fire brigade is a public or private organization that provides fire protection for a certain jurisdiction, which typically is a municipality, county, or fire protection district...

, and EMS). Several local businesses and amateur radio
Amateur radio
Amateur radio is the use of designated radio frequency spectrum for purposes of private recreation, non-commercial exchange of messages, wireless experimentation, self-training, and emergency communication...

 operators have transmitters on Farnsworth Peak.

See also

  • Harkers Canyon
    Harkers Canyon (Salt Lake County, Utah)
    Harkers Canyon is located west-southwest of downtown Salt Lake City, in Salt Lake County, Utah, USA. The canyon empties into the Salt Lake Valley from its origin in the Oquirrh Mountains. The canyon is oriented primarily from southwest to northeast, with the middle third of the canyon descending...

  • Oquirrh Mountain Utah Temple
    Oquirrh Mountain Utah Temple
    The Oquirrh Mountain Utah Temple is a temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints located in South Jordan, Utah, a suburb of Salt Lake City. South Jordan was the first city in the world to have two temples , followed by Provo, Utah...


External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.
 
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