The geologist looks to the Oquirrhs and sees the first full local mountain range inside the Basin & Range physiographic province — a curious stratigraphy of alternating limestone and quartzite layers.
The wildlife biologist sees a vast ecosystem — a de facto wildlife sanctuary, thanks in large part to Kennecott’s access-restricted holdings — containing mule deer, elk, and mountain lion.
The naturalist sees canyon networks lushly choked with Gambel oak and conifer-draped slopes that betray little evidence of human impact.
The historian sees a character-rich tapestry of events and figures — the heart of Utah’s mining history, intricate webs of forgotten trails, and secret canyon ghost towns.
I see a row of alpine sentinels, and between them deep canyons ripe for exploration. Look long enough, and like a daydreamer’s clouds, the Oquirrhs start to resemble things like Mayan pyramids, the islands in Jurassic Park, and Pride Rock from The Lion King.
Who knows what Coulter sees when he looks at the mountains? Adventure, probably — the thrill of the new and strange, or perhaps that innate and inexplicable comfort that mountains afford a Utah boy.
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