Ogden was Utah’s first city, founded in 1846, a year before the Mormon’s arrived into the Salt Lake Valley. Ogden was a center for trade, trapping, mining, and later a national transportation hub.

For a while, I’ve been hearing great things about Ogden and made it my goal to explore this city that is so close to home.

Interesting Facts

Ogden is a pretty interesting place, which has a little different history path than the rest of Utah. The city was founded in 1846 before the Mormon Pioneers arrived into Utah. It was a center for the Railroad, and it was once said that “You can’t get anywhere without coming to Ogden.” Now, Ogden is home to Weber State University and Hill Air Force Base. It is also said that Ogden has the lowest income inequality of any city in the United States, giving the city a very strong middle class.


  • If you like aviation, like I do, then the Hill Aerospace Museum is a must when visiting Ogden. The admission is free and they have an impressive amount of aircraft, missiles, and other gear on display.img_9096
  • We’ll broaden my geekdom to not just planes, but anything transportation related, including trains, which is why Ogden moved even higher on my like-list. The Utah State Railroad Museum is fitting for Ogden because it was the center of the railroad transportation world in the United States for so long. At the museum, you have full-size locomotives from different eras on display, the history and artifacts of the railroad industry in the United States, and a large miniature railroad.img_9080
  • Also located in the historic depot is a Browning gun museum, and a cowboy museum. The Browning family started making guns in Nauvoo and later moved to Utah.


  • Ogden High School is a gorgeous art deco building that is worth a visit, even just for a photo of the building’s facade.
  • The LDS temple in Ogden has been recently renovated, and the grounds/gardens are worth a visit. You can visit the exterior and visitor center to learn more about the building.
  • Golden Spike National Historic Site
    • The Golden Spike National Historic Site is located about an hour north from Ogden by car and is where the transcontinental met in 1869. There are two replica locomotives on display at the site, and in the summer they reenact the joining of the two rail lines that tied the United States together from coast to coast. If you want to mark your calendars, you can watch a special reenactment on May, 10th each year which is the day mark for the historic event, and they not only reenact the trains meeting, the golden spike being placed to join the lines, but reenact the exact photo that was taken when the two rail lines met.


  • A great spot for lunch in Ogden is Slack Water. Stop here for a huge selection of beer, many of them brewed in Utah, and be sure to get an order of the nachos. They are served as an appetizer and make sure you see how large they are before you continue to order anything else. They are also known for interesting pizza combinations/toppings like the tikka masala pizza and the mac and cheese pizza.

Night Out in Ogden

  • Start the night by visiting Odgen’s Own Distillery for a few samples of their vodka, whiskey, and gin. They are open Tuesday – Friday from 12:00 – 5:00 p.m. Their vodka is rightly named “Five Wives Vodka” and they have a plain, heavenly, and sinful version. The heavenly is vanilla custard flavor, and the sinful is cinnamon flavor.
  • There are two main drags in Ogden, 25th and Washington. These are both lined with restaurants, bars, and little shops. All of the bars and restaurants listed below are on 25th, it is easy enough to find parking along the street and everything is within walking distance.
  • Roosters Brewing/www.roostersbrewingco.com
    • Roosters is a local brewery and restaurant, with a great selection of beer and appetizers. The most popular two appetizers are the “what a crock” dip and the shrimp dip. The “what a crock” is a crab based dip made with spinach, artichoke, and eight different types of cheese. The shrimp dip is much the same, but with shrimp. Both are served with fresh bread slices. In addition to their beer, they also make fantastic root beer. If you want to make your root beer a little more fun, get their signature cocktail that is root beer, butterscotch schnapps, and Five Wives Vanilla Custard Vodka (from Odgen’s Own, see above)
  • Scrud’s Gourmet Grub/www.scrudsgourmetgrub.com
    • They are known for having the best burgers in Ogden. Try their stuffed burgers with patties stuffed with bacon and cheese, cream cheese, onion and garlic sauce, and more bacon. They have great fresh cut French fries, wings, and hand-scooped shakes.
  • Alleged/www.alleged25th.com
    • During Ogden’s earlier days this was a brothel, but it has been renovated and is now a very classy bar. They have even made a commitment to invest 100 percent of their profits into the further restoration of downtown Ogden. Drinking with a cause!
  • Rovali’s/www.rovalis.com
    • This is a great Italian restaurant with an excellent selection of craft cocktails, and they are also very well known for their cake and other pastries. They are all made in house by their resident baker, Andrea. If you don’t eat dinner here, stop by after dinner and drinks for dessert. They rotate the selections each week, so you’ll always be surprised and have something new to try.
  • Lucky Slice/www.theluckyslice.com
    • Friday and Saturday night they are open until 2:00 a.m., so it is that perfect stop for a late night snack after a night of exploring 25th They have daily specials for pizza by the slice, breadsticks, and local beer.
  • Sonora Grill/www.thesonoragrill
    • Sonora Grill is located a few blocks off 25th, and is worth the jaunt. This is one of Ogden’s best restaurants and serves fantastic Mexican food. The owner has been in the restaurant business since he was 16, and has created this restaurant in Ogden which has been a complete success.


Ogden has three ski resorts within about 30 minutes from downtown. If you really wanted to do an affordable, fantastic ski trip to Utah, I’d recommend basing yourself in Ogden. You’ll have access to world class resorts and snow, cheaper lodging in Ogden, and still plenty of options for nightlife on 25th.

  • Nordic Valley/ http://nordicvalley.com/
    • If you are learning to ski, or want the cheapest lift ticket possible, this is the place to go. Day lift tickets start at $30 for adults, and kids six and under ski for free. They have a little grill in their lodge that serves burgers, pizza and chicken strips, the kids meals are a great value as well, and they’ll let anyone order them.
  • Powder Mountain/ http://www.powdermountain.com/
    • Everyone raves about Powder Mountain. They often get the best snow, and they limit their ticket sales to 2,000 per day to control crowds. For about $20 you can even catch a ride on one of their snow cats to the back country.
  • Snow Basin/ https://www.snowbasin.com/
    • This resort is very popular, and has plenty of terrain to explore. You get the full size resort at Snow Basin, without the full size price. Below Strawberry at the Strawberry Peak lodge near the gondola, you can grab cheap homemade tacos for lunch.

After skiing at any of the three resorts up the canyon from Ogden swing by the Shooting Star Saloon in Huntsville, Utah. From the dollar bills on the wall, to the taxidermied St. Bernard, this place has character coming right out of the mounted deer’s ass on the wall! They have a simple cash only menu with burgers, sausages, beer, but no fries. The special is the burger with grilled sausages. Depending on who is counting, this establishment just might be the oldest bar in Utah.

I love finding somewhere so close to home to explore and was really excited to be able to spend some quality time this year skiing, visiting the sights, and eating/drinking my way through Ogden. Do you have anywhere that has been so close to home, yet you haven’t explored and would like to visit?

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Utah Ski Deals

Austin’s Travel Store

An exhibit at the State Railroad Museum.