Stansbury Island in Great Salt Lake

October 10, 2013


Photographer: Patrick Wiggins
Summary Author: Patrick Wiggins

While flying into Salt Lake City one day last month, I photographed the scene above showing Stansbury Island in Utah’s Great Salt Lake. The ponds in the foreground are evaporation ponds used to extract salt and other minerals from the lake water. Stansbury Island covers approximately 90 sq km, and its highest point stands 2,026 m above mean sea level. Like Antelope Island, the largest island in Great Salt Lake, Stansbury really isn’t an island any longer. The level of Great Salt Lake has dropped in recent years and these islands can now be referred to as peninsulas. When asked how many islands there are in the Great Salt Lake, Jim Davis with the Utah Geological Survey replied: "The question is not as straightforward as one might think. Although there are 17 officially named islands, answers to this question typically range from 0 to 15." It all depends on the ever changing level of the lake.

Note that the black lines on the right are from the propeller. Photo taken with an iPhone 5 out the window of my Cessna 172 just before sunset, flying about 500 m above the ground, looking northeast, on September 9, 2013.

Photo details: Camera Maker: Apple; Camera Model: iPhone 5; Focal Length: 4.1mm (35mm equivalent: 33mm); Aperture: f/2.4; Exposure Time: 0.0003 s (1/3390); ISO equiv: 50.