PIO, Utah Geological Survey
Community Science Photo Station Installed at Bonneville Salt Flats
SALT LAKE CITY (Jan 24, 2023) — A new photo station was recently installed at the Bonneville Salt Flats by Utah Geological Survey (UGS) staff to create crowd-sourced time-lapses that monitor the environment and engage communities in science. The station is at the end of the Bonneville Salt Flats access road off I-80 Exit 4 to Bonneville Speedway Road. UGS staff hope it will be utilized as a trip-planning tool to protect the delicate salt flats.
Visitors to the photo station simply take photos and email them to Chronolog to be added to the salt flats page, where other contributor photos are compiled to create a time-lapse video. Anyone can access the images at https://chronolog.io/site/
“Many visitors want to drive on the world-famous Bonneville Speedway. However, many are disappointed upon arrival to find the flats covered in water. The Bonneville Salt Flats typically flood in the fall and become a large shallow lake until they dry out in the spring. Summer rain storms can quickly cause large ponds to form on the dry crust,” said Utah Geological Survey Geologist Jeremiah Bernau. “In addition to documenting environmental changes, these images will enable visitors to evaluate conditions and better plan their visits. Driving on the crust when wet is restricted because it can damage it for years.”
This station is the result of a collaboration between the Bureau of Land Management, which manages the salt flats, and the University of Utah and the Utah Geological Survey, which studies this changing landscape. To find more information about the salt flats, visit https://www.blm.gov/visit/