Riverton is located in the southern end of Salt Lake Valley, the first people of European descent to live in the area that is now Riverton settled in the mid-1850s. These early settlers scattered widely along the river bottom in crude dugout homes. Although the early accounts disagree, Archibald Gardner may have been the first to settle Riverton land. The town was originally referred to as “Gardnerville” prior to changing its name to Riverton. Riverton’s initial growth was slow because of the lack of water for irrigation. When more water became available, the town began to grow. Eventually three canals were built to extend water from the nearby Jordan River to the bench land areas, providing irrigation for agricultural uses to the larger area. By the beginning of World War I in 1914, with its additional irrigation water and influx of people, Riverton prospered as an agricultural community. Its thriving business district was also evident at this time. This building also served as a schoolhouse and a community meeting place for the small town. It was a large one-room structure which was later used as a blacksmith shop. Afterward it was remodeled and converted into a home. As Riverton continued to grow a judicial precinct was established. This took place in 1879. At this time the name of the settlement was officially changed from Gardnerville to Riverton by Judge Charles Smith. By 1886 the Riverton Ward was organized and Orrin P. Miller was made its bishop. The meeting house was enlarged in 1888 with a back addition built on the east end. When completed, the whole building had been given a “T” shape.
Construction was begun on a two-story commercial building in 1893 by Daniel Densely on the corner of 12600 South and Redwood Road. Located on the northeast corner of the street, it was built of brick and housed the largest dance floor in the south end of the valley on its second story. Dances, wedding receptions, political rallies, community plays and traveling group performances were held there. Businesses were housed on the first floor and at one time or another they include a general merchandise store, post office, bank, harness store, implement shop, carpentry shop, shoe repair store, and beauty and barber shops. The Commercial Building was torn own in 1939. The Page-Pixon store was built around the start of the 20th century, west of Redwood Road at 12760 South. The large department store sold everything from building materials, coal and dry goods to groceries, grain and house wares. This building was set back off the road and had a tie rail in front of it for tying up horses. The Jordan Valley Bank was started in 1905 as a community bank. This bank was first housed in the Page-Hansen Store then the Commercial Building. In 1920 it moved across the street, to the south. Other businesses coming to Riverton in the ten-year period before and after the First World War included Bill’s Meat Market, Gilbert Lloyd’s Blacksmith Shop, Riverton Motors, the Riverton, Utah Canning Factory, the Riverton Alfalfa Mill, Utah Poultry Company and numerous others ranging from theaters to mercantile stores. Farming was also a major Riverton business.
Just before the turn of the century, the farmers in Riverton gradually began to change from self-sufficient farming to commercial farming. In its early years Riverton’s farmers were mostly self-sufficient, producing almost everything they needed. This was no longer the case when farming became a business. Riverton farmers were becoming specialists concentrating mostly on alfalfa, wheat, sugar beets, tomatoes, poultry, sheep or dairy cows. At this time, on land purchased from Samuel Howard in 1886, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints began to store tithed produce and livestock. It was not long until the hill that this enterprise was located on, at 1150 West 12400 South, became known as Tithing Yard Hill, which is now a residential planned development under the same name. Electricity first came to Riverton in 1912. The metamorphosis was aided by the increasing availability of the automobile. Rivertonians could now easily work in Salt Lake City and surrounding areas. By 1948, Riverton had grown sufficiently to be incorporated into a city. During this time a New City Hall was constructed at the edge of the Riverton City Park at 12800 South and 1400 West.
In 1996 the city purchased the old Riverton Elementary School and its surrounding 9acres of land from the Jordan School District. The city initially put a ballot measure out to fund the school through a general revenue bond, but the measure failed to gain support because it would have raised property taxes for residents of Riverton. Instead the city put together a multi-year plan to convert the old school house to the Riverton Community Center, and some of the land was sold to the County Library System for a new, state of the art library. By 2005–06, the city had successfully renovated the old elementary School into a new Community Center and City hall, which now houses all of the city’s administrative offices. The often contentious city boundaries were in flux between the times of incorporation until the year 2000. At incorporation the boundaries were set from the Jordan River westward to what is now known as the coordinates of 3600 West, and from 11800 South to approximately 13800 South. In 1970, the town of Bluffdale was incorporated, taking in all of the land between 13800 South, southward to the Salt Lake/Utah County Line. 1982 saw the incorporation of the city of Draper, a town once situated at the south-east end of the Salt Lake Valley, their incorporated boundaries, uncontested by Riverton, took area all of the area eastward from the Jordan River to the I-15 freeway, an area that was once “loosely” considered or referred to as Riverton or “Riverton Siding”. In 1996 the city boundaries grew, virtually doubling the physical size of the city, through the annexation of land between Riverton and what was then known as the town of Harriman (now an incorporated city), extending its boundaries from 3600 West to roughly 4800 West, and to 5600 West from 13400 South to 14200 South and points southward beyond the city limits of Bluffdale. Included in the 1996 annexation was the “Foothills” development which had previously been annexed into Riverton during the 1980s, and then later de-annexed after the original developer filed for bankruptcy. The final solidification of Riverton’s boundaries came when the city of Harriman incorporated in 2000, halting any possible further expansion westward by Riverton.
ATV Riding Areas In Riverton, Utah
• American Fork Canyon: American Fork Canyon offers miles of ATV trails, ranging from dirt roads to single-track trails. American Fork Canyon is widely known for the single track motorcycle trails, but it also offers stunning views and roads wide enough for ATVs and UTVs. ATV and UTV/SxS trails, including dirt roads and designated ATV trails, are considered to be of moderate difficulty, although they do include steep drop-offs and edges. Visitors should explore the trails that lead to locations like Silver Lake, Mineral Basin, Cascade Springs, Mill Hollow, Snake Creek Canyon and Soldier Hollow.
• Arapeen ATV Trail System: The Arapeen ATV trail system is located in Sanpete County, two hours south of Salt Lake City, Utah, and includes 750,000 acres of national forest on the Manti Mountain and hundreds of trails to explore on your ATV, motorcycle or UTV. This location is ideal during the summer or for a weekend getaway. You can access the trails from the towns of Fairview, Mt. Pleasant, Spring City, Ephraim, Manti, Sterling, and Mayfield. For more information on the Arapeen OHV trail system.
• Casto Canyon ATV Trails: Castor Canyon, located in Panguitch, Utah, allows you to explore the sandstone cliffs that range in color from white, pink and green while enjoying a nice trail ride on your ATV, motorcycle or UTV. These ATV trails allow you to travel through pine trees and can easily connect you to the Fremont ATV trail. Once on the Fremont trail you can go south and get to Tropic Reservoir and the Great Western trail or head north to the Paiute ATV trail system that is also on our list. Coral Pink sand dunes are located near the town of Kanab, Utah. It is unique, as pine trees grow in the reddish-colored sand, and the riding is great.
• Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park: The Coral Pink sand dunes are located just north of Kanab and are easily accessible right off of the freeway. The sand dunes include 1200 acres of red sand in which junipers and pine grow a very unique site to behold. This riding location also offers a campground with paved roads, restrooms, showers and a sewage dump station. This location is ideal for the whole family, as it is convenient but also full of great riding for ATVs, motorcycles and UTVs.
• Five Mile Pass ATV Area: Located 25 miles west of Lei, Utah, and Five Mile Pass is a popular riding location for ATVs, UTVs and motorcycles. This ATV area allows riders to explore many types of terrain, including hills, washes, desert and mountain terrain. For day users there is a large parking area with many accessible dirt roads for riding and camping. Plans are currently in the works to install facilities, including water and developed campgrounds, but it’s a good idea to come prepared until then. Currently, there are four new restrooms on site. For more information on the Five Mile Pass ATV area, The Knolls ATV area is 80 miles west of Salt Lake City and offers great riding. The terrain includes sand, hard pack, rocks and even salt flats where you can test your speed.
• Knolls ATV Area: The Knolls ATV area is about 80 miles west of Salt Lake City, Utah, and only 45 miles east of Wendover, Nevada. This diverse area consists of white sand dunes, mud flats, trails and hills cascading over 30,000 acres of land. This land is managed by the BLM and is open for riding and camping year round. There are toilet facilities available, but no running water. For more information on the Knolls OHV area, Little Sahara in Jericho, Utah, is an awesome place to have a dune session. It includes 60,000 acres of large sand dunes that are up to 700 feet tall.
• Little Sahara Sand Dunes: Little Sahara sand dunes located in Jericho, Utah, has been named one of Utah’s premier riding destinations. This recreation area includes 60,000 acres of large sand dunes (up to 700 feet), trails and rocky hills. Sand Mountain is a drag racers paradise where you can bring your machine and race it against the fastest machines Utah has to offer. When riding here, it is a requirement to use whip flags. A day-use fee or annual permits are also required. When camping or just riding, the main staging areas include Sand Mountain, White Sands, Oasis and Jericho.
• Mill Canyon ATV Trails: Mill Canyon, just west of Midway, Utah, in the Wasatch Mountains, is best to ride during late spring through early falling. The staging area can be found north of Soldier Hollow golf course and includes parking and restrooms. These trails stretch across 75 miles of mountains. An added bonus to the great mountain views are the chances to spot wildlife, such as deer, elk, moose, coyote, eagles, hawks and black bears. It is best to visit this area during the late spring through the early fall.
• Moab ATV Trails: Moab ATV trails can be found 230 miles southeast of Salt Lake City, Utah. This area is world-renowned for its technical slick rock and off-road trails, but it also offers sand trails. No matter the terrain you are riding, you will see some amazing scenic views. Because of its more technical terrain, riding in Moab is suggested for experienced riders or drivers. Even less experienced riders can enjoy the views by taking a local RZR or Hummer tour. The area is great year round; however, the summers may get unbearably hot.
• Paiute ATV Trail System: The Paiute trail system allows riders to enjoy over 1000 miles of trails, as it is Utah’s longest and one of the country’s most popular ATV trail system. As it is located in south/central Utah, it can be easily accessed from Beaver, Fillmore, Richfield and Salina. Each of the previously mentioned towns offers all the necessary accommodations.
• Pine Lake ATV Trail: Pine Lake Trail, 37 miles east of Panguitch, Utah, offers mountain trails and views of the national forest. It is suggested that you park and camp at the Pine Lake campground because you can ride directly from there. This trail provides riders with great trails and camping. The trails are not technical, and it’s only a 21-mile loop, but you will be rewarded with outstanding views.
• San Rafael Swell Recreation Area: The San Rafael Swell recreation area is 30 miles west of Green River, Utah, in Emery County off of Interstate 70. The 1500 square miles of BLM land consists of beautiful desert, canyon gorges and colorful landscape. When visiting this recreation area, it is a must to ride Devils Racetrack, Iron Wash, Buckhorn Wash, Ernie Canyon and 5 Miles of Hell. Some of these trails may be limited to single track only, but there is a wide range where you can ride your ATV or drive your UTV
• Sand Hollow Sand Dunes State Park: Sand Hollow State Park is a short drive east from Saint George, Utah, in Hurricane. The only access to this park is through Hurricane, Utah. Sand Hollow allows you to explore scenic red sand dunes, sand trails and red rock. There are several challenging trails where you can test your ATV, motorcycle or UTV on rock-climbing obstacles. Beyond the beautiful scenery, camping sites are available, but must be reserved ahead of time. One thing that is unique about Sand Hollow is the lake that is located there. You can ride near the beach and then take a swim or go fishing.
• White Wash Sand Dunes: White Wash sand dunes, also referred to as “Dubinky,” are about 25 miles southeast of Green River, Utah, and 47 miles northwest of Moab. The area is open for ATV use and includes sand dunes, washes, slick rock and desert trails. If you are looking for a trail to test your technical riding skills, you should explore Brian’s Trail and Mary’s Trail for difficult slick-rock sections. East of the slick rock, one can find sand, washes, single track, and two-track.
Riverton Utah ATV Accident Attorney Free Consultation
If you or someone you love has been injured in an ATV accident, please call Ascent Law LLC for your free consultation (801) 676-5506. We want to help you.
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States
Telephone: (801) 676-5506