Backyard Tourist: Hogle Zoo

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Backyard Tourist: Hogle Zoo in Salt Lake City

Over Memorial Day Weekend we decided to head out to the Zoo – Hogle Zoo to be precise. Located at the base of Emigration Canyon in Salt Lake City, it spans 42 acres and contains over 800 animals. Although pricey, we truly enjoy making it here at least once each year. The kids especially love seeing all the animals.

Sadly, we went on a day it decided to rain, but it did mean less people crowding around the glass and fences – so it was one of those give/take moments. Our first stop was in the gift shop for some umbrellas since we forgot to bring ours, and then to pick up a covered double stroller. We were planning on renting a red wagon, but they don’t have umbrellas.

visiting Hogle Zoo in the Rain

Our first stop on the way in, were the Elephants. We arrived just as mom and baby were coming out. They walked around for a little,but quickly returned inside. I’m guessing they didn’t care much for the rain either. In 2009 Hogle Zoo had their first African Elephant born to momma Christie – Zuri.

Zuri - African Elephant born at Hogle Zoo in Salt Lake City

I love the Elephants, but we decided to continue on when they went inside. So off we went to the monkey house. My pictures here didn’t turn out too well, I think a setting was changed on the camera – but there are a good number of primates hanging in branches and jumping around in here.

After leaving the monkey house, we found ourselves facing a pretty fun looking kid area – perfect for an early break. With a lighthouse slide, wrecked ship, and wading pools, there’s plenty for the kids to have fun with. When it’s not raining, I’m told there is a spout that will also spray water periodically – so on those hot days you visit, you can cool down.

Kids area at Hogle Zoo

We had to cut the kids time there short when the need for a restroom arose. Thankfully a quick consult on the map, and we found 2 restrooms within a quick walk. We possibly missed an animal or two on our way, but we made it. After that pitstop we decided to hang out with the harbor seals. I think they are my personal favorite to watch as they glide through the water.

harbor seal at Hogle Zoo
They were a bit hard to catch on camera too. The seals are found in the Rocky Shores Exhibit along with Polar Bears, River Otters, and Sea Lions, and Grizzly Bears. As part of the exhibit 400,000 gallons of water are filtered and recycled into the exhibit pools. That’s a LOT of water!
Polar Bear at Hogle Zoo
We headed up a hill and got a glimpse of the Tiger hiding out in his hut, but then found we wanted to head back down the hill to avoid missing the indoor wildlife center – housing amphibians and birds. 
Siberian Tiger at Hogle Zoo
Sadly, I’m sure due to rain, the bird show was not going on. If you do make it to Hogle Zoo, though, you have to check out the bird show. Its pretty awesome. 
On our way though we had to stop and get some pictures with the many statues around the park, and drink out of the lion’s mouth. 
Hogle Zoo

Hogle Zoo

Hogle Zoo

We of course couldn’t help ourselves when it came to the Apes. I mean really now, you’ve got to see just how far you can puff your cheeks out when standing next to this bust.

And you know you’ve got to make some grunt a bit when comparing your height and arm length to that of a Male Gorilla!

It was interesting as I read up on Hogle Zoo, to see all the information they provide about the animals. You can learn quite a bit just from their website. They go further though and encourage you to get involved, to help animals in the wild, and really learn what is happening to the different species.

For example, Gorilla’s biggest threat is Bush Meat – meat that villagers hunt for their families to live. By educating us, we get to learn more and do our part to help sustain the animals around the globe. Pretty cool huh?

Finally the zoo is not complete until you’ve ridden the Conservation Carousel featuring 42 hand carved animals. A great place to regroup, let the kids be kids for a minute, and take a break for your feet.

Conservation Carousel at Hogle Zoo
On our way out we realized we missed the Lion. What’s a visit to the zoo without seeing the Lion?? There was quite a crowd around him though, so we stood afar off, and held the kids up to see as best they could. It’s no wonder he’s the King of the Jungle – so much pride as he sat there allowing everyone to view him – very regal indeed. 
Lions at Hogle Zoo
As we left the Zoo, we ran into none other than Molar Man – the sole reason we went on a day of rain. A big shout out and Thank You to Burg Pediatric Dentistry for being the coolest dentist around, and sponsoring a patient appreciation day at the zoo. I don’t think my kids will ever be afraid of the dentist again. 
Molar Man at Hogle Zoo

4 thoughts on “Backyard Tourist: Hogle Zoo

  1. At least it didn't rain the whole time. My kids used to love going to the Bronx Zoo when they were little…especially my daughter who's really into animals.. Glad they enjoyed the day.

  2. We've gone to amusement parks on rainy days, there's something to be said for the lack of crowds! And it looks like you guys had an awesome time!

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