Leave No Trace™ Principles at Red Mountain
By John Ibach, Director of Outdoor Recreation
At Red Mountain Resort we take great pride in the good relationship we have with public land managers and the fact that we welcome thousands of visitors to our beautiful corner of Utah for hiking, biking, climbing and water sports each year. Because of the beauty and fragile nature of the desert we live in, our constant goal is to leave as little footprint as possible. We do this in part by adhering to the Leave No Trace principles. Because we use the principles listed below we are able to travel thousands of miles of trails each year while leaving a minimal impact on fragile environments and other peoples’ experiences.
Leave No Trace Principles
Plan Ahead & Prepare
- Adequate trip planning and preparation helps backcountry travelers accomplish trip goals safely and enjoyably, while simultaneously minimizing damage to the land.
- Travel on durable surfaces.
- Concentrate use on existing trails.
- Walk single file in the middle of the trail, even when wet or muddy.
- Avoid places where impacts are just beginning.
Leave What You Find
- Preserve the past: examine, but do not touch, cultural or historic structures and artifacts.
- Leave rocks, plants and other natural objects as you find them.
- Observe wildlife from a distance. Do not follow or approach them.
- Never feed animals. Feeding wildlife damages their health, alters natural behaviors, and exposes them to predators and other dangers.
- Protect wildlife and your food by storing rations and trash securely.
- Avoid wildlife during sensitive times: mating, nesting, raising young, or winter.
Be Considerate of Other Visitors
- Be courteous. Yield to other users on the trail.
- Step to the downhill side of the trail when encountering pack stock.
- Take breaks away from other visitors.
- Let nature's sounds prevail. Avoid loud voices and noises.
How to Avoid Overheating in the Summer Sun
By John Ibach,
Director of Outdoor Recreation
In our desert environment the summer months are hot. Those of us who live here are accustomed to taking the necessary precautions against heat exposure.
When you arrive at Red Mountain one of the first things you will be told is to drink plenty of fluids while you are here. Each morning as we prepare for a hike, the guides will ask if you have your water bottles full and ready to go. Other precautions again heat exposure include a wide brimmed hat, sunglasses and 30 SPF sun block.
Heat-related emergencies can occur as a result of fluid and electrolyte (salts) loss through heavy sweating. Loss of fluid and electrolytes can begin to produce painful spasms of skeletal muscles usually in the legs and abdomen. Body temperature is usually normal, and the skin is moist. Over time, the victim loses fluid through sweating, which decreases the blood volume. Blood flow to the skin increases, reducing blood flow to the vital organs. Because the circulatory system is affected, the person goes into mild shock. At this point the victims body temperature will usually be normal or below normal.
Other signs and symptoms include:
- Cool, moist, pail or ashen skin. (Skin may be red in the early stage, immediately after exertion.)
- Dizziness and weakness
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In this stage, heat-related illness can usually be reversed with prompt care. Often the victim feels better after resting in a cooler place and drinking cool water.
We want you to enjoy your stay with us and want you to take the steps necessary to prevent heat-related illnesses. Stay safe!
Kayaking at Red Mountain Resort
Q and A with John Ibach, Director of Outdoor Recreation
Kayaking is a great choice for a warm summer afternoon. You will combine an upper body workout with astonishing scenery on one of our local lakes.
- Will I get my clothing wet? Yes, you will sit on top of the kayak so will most likely get wet.
- What should I wear? In May it is generally warm enough to wear shorts. Wear shoes that you don't mind getting wet; sturdy sandals are a good choice. Hats, sunglasses and sunscreen are a must.
- Will the kayak tip over? In the hottest part of the summer our guests will intentionally roll off the kayaks to swim. Sitting on top of the kayak makes it easy to remount in the water.
- Are there any rapids? No, we only offer flat water kayaking.
- Can I take my camera? Will it get wet? Your camera and gear will get wet unless you have a good waterproof bag.
- How deep is the water? We kayak on local lakes and the water is deep. Utah law requires everyone wear a life jacket and we supply good ones. We also supply gloves to protect hands while paddling.
- Do I need experience? No, this adventure is designed for beginners. However, if you have experience, it still provides a good workout in a beautiful setting.
Have more questions? We want to hear from you. Please leave a comment below.Add a comment
Hiking Philosophy at Red Mountain
By John Ibach,
Director of Outdoor Recreation
At Red Mountain Resort, we pride ourselves on our Outdoor Recreation program. We are privileged to be situated next to Snow Canyon State Park one of Utah’s premier State Parks. Our location gives us immediate access to over 25 miles of trail - all within walking distance or only a short drive away.
As director of the Outdoor Recreation Department, I am proud of the fact that our approach to the desert is as stewards; our emphasis is on sustainable recreational use. While we use the park and surrounding public lands constantly throughout the year, our impact is minimal.
At Red Mountain outdoor recreation implies a whole different experience than just fitness; and while recreation is a component of a well-rounded fitness program, we offer a much broader perspective.
As you hike each morning you will be entertained by our guides while learning human history, geology, plant identification, sustainable use, wildlife and local lore. Our morning hiking program is designed to give you the tools to make outdoor activities a part of your life. Red Mountain hikes offer terrain from easy to difficult and our experts will give you the information you need to make choices that fit your comfort level.
The hikes fulfill two functions: to offer you an opportunity to do something physical and to introduce you to the desert environment. We hope that you leave Red Mountain with an understanding of why we love our home and enjoy what we do here.
Meet Outdoor Recreation Director John Ibach
Hometown: Ogden, Utah
Current town: St. George, Utah
Birthday: April 6
Favorite color: Blue
Favorite fitness activity: Road Biking
How long at Red Mountain: 4 years
Favorite fitness class offered at RM: Any class taught by Chrissie Pettigrew.
Favorite thing about working at RM: I always appreciate the positive attitude of team members and our guests and the beautiful location.
If you weren’t in Southern Utah, where would you live? I would live somewhere else in the desert.
Best RM memory: Though I have done it many times, I really enjoy the Zion Bike & Hike Adventure. It is a great day trip.
Favorite food: I really like the vegetarian dishes on the Red Mountain dinner menu.
Favorite indulgence: I read. I love history, and I read it not for finding out what happened but to try and find out why it happened. I also find Bonsai to be relaxing.
Where did you go to college? Utah State University (Logan, Utah)
When you aren’t at work, what do you do for fun? I love to play sports and relax on a long bicycle ride.
Favorite book or movie that is related to health, wellness or fitness: "Breaking Away"...it inspires me to ride more.
Favorite quote: “How old would you be, if you didn’t know how old you was?” ~ Satchel Page
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What to Bring on Your Red Mountain Adventure
- Casual and comfortable clothing
- Outdoor clothing - Removable layers work best as mornings may be cool and warm quickly during a hike. Winter months are moderate, so layering of a jacket, fleece, non-cotton base, hat and gloves will be quite sufficient for even the coolest of mornings.
- Workout apparel
- Aerobic shoes with non-marking soles
- Hiking boots or shoes - lightweight & well-vented with traction
- Double layer socks or blister free socks for hiking
- Swimsuit, swim goggles, pool shoes and cover-up
- Padded bike shorts
- Sunscreen and sun hat/visor
- We will provide you with two RM Sports water bottles on arrival, but suggest a hydration pack such as CamelBak for hiking.
- Backpack or waist-pack for hands-free hiking; again, a hydration pack such as a CamelBak would be highly recommended.
- Golf clubs - Rental is available at our local courses, should you choose not to transport your own.
- Camera and film or digital camera (don't forget your chargers!)
- Don't worry all the essentials such as energy bars, toiletries, film and souvenirs are available at Red Mountain Resort & Spa Outfitters. You can even trade in your old hiking boots or athletic shoes for a discount on a new pair. Your old shoes will be donated to Soles4Souls!
- Leave your valuables and jewelry at home
Wild Flowers in Snow Canyon State Park
By John Ibach, Director of Outdoor Recreation
Every spring we look forward to the wild flower bloom. The rain and snow that falls through the fall winter and early spring dictates not only how many blooms we see but also the types of flowers we are most likely to see. While every spring we may not see the same flowers there a few that bloom fairly consistently even in the worst of droughts. Desert Marigold, Penstetmon (beard-tongue), Castilleja (Indian Paintbrush), Spectacle Pod, Purple Sage, Globe Mallow, Sacred Datura, Creosote bush and, of course, the cactus will be seen throughout the park. The Marigold will bloom in early April and even earlier if we get warm temperatures. Primrose is also one on of the earliest bloomers. There are many other small ground hugging plants, too numerous to name here, that also bloom early in the spring and put on quite a show for those paying attention.
The cactus - Prickly Pear, Beavertail, Cholla, Narrow Leaf Yuccas, Broad Leaf Yuccas, Purple Torch and Agave - make their appearance in the first couple weeks of April and while it is spectacular it is also short lived. It always amazes me how such a seemingly rough plant can produce such a delicate flower. The blooming cactus can also be home to various animals for instance the Wren makes its nest in the Cholla cactus one of the thorniest plants in our desert. It is a sight to behold this display of color and inspiring to witness life survive and flourish in this seemingly harsh environment.Add a comment
M.E.E.T the Mustangs
M.E.E.T = Mustang, Educational, Experiential, Training
Connect spirit to spirit with American Wild Mustangs. Windhorse Relations is a non-profit organization that uses the American Mustang to teach humans how to create willing experiences. Most participants have little or no experience with horses, and learn to replace fear, stress, anxiety and emotional trauma with peace, strength and emotional balance.
Create Willing Relationships
This private group teambuilding adventure is a fun and transforming experience using American Wild Mustangs as teachers and foster leadership through empowerment and non-verbal communication. Learn "Working the Edge," a powerful technique for transforming fear into curiosity, resistance into cooperation and tolerance into willingness.
To learn more about this adventure, visit our website at
About Windhorse Relations
Mary Lee Brighton and Marcia Thayne have created this dynamic and effective program using wild mustangs as teachers. The program incorporates 35 years of Mary's professional training skills and Marcia's experience in education into a powerful Equine Experiential Training which is very successful in Utah. Mary Lee chose wild mustangs rather than domesticated horses because of their intelligence, awareness, and physical capabilities that have allowed them to survive over the years.