Escalante (sometimes called Escalante City) is located in central Garfield County. The town is named after the Franciscan missionary, Silvestre Vélez de Escalante. I guess the population at around 800-900 people. Utah Scenic Byway 12 (UT-12) runs through the town, where it becomes Main Street. The business district of Escalante is located along UT-12. Most of the town is surrounded by the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument (GS-ENM). The Escalante Petrified Forest State Park is located just west of town. I spent 3 days camped at the state park in June, 2022.
A word of two about Escalante Outfitters. The business sells outdoor gear as the name implies, but also has a cafe. Good thing too, because when we were looking for a place to eat on Sunday it was the only restaurant/cafe we could find that was open. They make excellent pizza, and best of all, I could get an ice cold locally brewed beer to go with it (on Sunday, in Utah).
Escalante Interagency Visitor Center
The Escalante Interagency Visitor Center is one of four visitor centers in the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument. The visitor center is located on Utah State Route 12 at the west end of Escalante town. The center is staffed with personnel from the Bureau of Land Management, National Park Service, and U.S. Forest Service. The center opened in 2005 and is Gold LEED-rated. You don't know what that is? Well, I'll tell you. LEED is an acronymn for "Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design" and is a certification given to buildings based on how energy efficient and enviromentally friendly they are. Criteria are set by the U.S. Green Building Council. There are four levels of LEED certification: Certified, Silver, Gold, and Platinum. So now you know.
You can get information on weather, road conditions, hiking trails, permits, places of interest and just about anything else you might want to know, not only for Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, but also the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area and Dixie National Forest. The visitor center has a museum, conference room, a small gift shop, public restrooms, and a large covered patio with lots of picnic tables.
Bonus - Escalante Heritage Center
The Escalante Heritage Center is located a little over a mile east of Escalante town on Utah State Route 12. The center chronicles the journey of a group of Mormon pioneers from southwestern to southeastern Utah, especially their passage through Hole-in-the-Rock. There are outdoor exhibits around a plaza, and a small visitor center that's open Monday through Saturday. Two large paintings by artist Lynn Griffin depict the pioneers' descent through Hole-in-the-Rock. The center also has a collection of vintage farming implements. The Escalante Heritage Center is open April through October, and admission is free. (PS There are nice restrooms).
Background information obtained from the BLM, NPS, Utah State brochures, and Wikipedia.
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