A Grand Day Out at the Sheepdog Championships


I know this is a cheat- I didn’t cook this- but it’s the best takeout around- my idea of the best last minute meal in Salt Lake. After a long road trip today it was great to pick it up and take it away home for a quick satisfying meal. It’s a roast smoked turkey breast sandwich with really great BBQ sauce and the best restaurant baked beans I’ve ever had. Where can you get it you ask? The answer is The SugarHouse Barbecue Company– if you come to Salt Lake don’t miss it. I must say that I think a Hornsby’s Hard Cider is the perfect accompaniment to this meal.

And writing of things not to be missed… Rick surprised me with the idea of a trip to the International Sheepdog Championship at The Soldier Hollow Classic. It was a grand day with a trip in our Jeep about an hour up over the mountains by freeway to Heber City, Midway and finally Soldier Hollow. Soldier Hollow is where the Biathlon was held for the 2002 Olympics. This weekend they have a big sheep herding course set up for the sheepdogs, some Splash-dog competition in the water, a Navajo Rug sale, various dog related attractions and more. We really enjoyed watching those amazing dogs and their trainers. It’s still on through Monday so do go if you’re in the area.

Here are some of the Splash-dogs. Some didn’t want to jump in and some couldn’t wait…



The sheep dog course is a bit more complicated and situated on a giant hill with gates where the sheep must be located, collected and then herded through three gates and then cut out into groups of three and two sheep, put back together and finally penned into a corral at the bottom- all in a time trial. These dogs are amazing and I can’t even begin to fathom how their trainers get them to control those wacky sheep using whistles and calls from the bottom of the course. When a run is over there are plenty of helper dogs to get the sheep out of the way if necessary too. Most of the dogs are Border Collies and I have even more respect now for how hard they work and how smart they are. Sorry the pics aren’t great I didn’t have a telephoto lens and it’s a big hill.





Here’s an adorable little cowboy sitting in front of me in the viewing stands and watching so intently.


And after all the wonderful events we finally left -deciding to take an unpaved road known as Guardsman’s pass over the summit of the mountain and down the other side to Salt Lake City through Big Cottonwood Canyon…

This is looking back down into Heber Valley.


These are some of the Aspens in the forest along the way.


This is the summit of the mountain looking back towards Heber over that far mountain.


This is where you hit paved road heading down towards Brighton Ski Resort and Salt Lake through Big Cottonwood Canyon in the Wasatch National Forest. Still many more miles of beautiful country to go through before you open up into the Salt Lake Valley.


Well that’s enough of a travel log for one day- think? Thanks for coming on our journey with us- we hope you enjoyed some of it.



  1. Deborah says:

    I’ve never been to the sheepdog championships, but I’ve heard that it’s a lot of fun. And your pictures make me proud to live in Utah!!

  2. Gabi says:

    Sally- I wish you could have been here! Next time you come to the states you must visit us!

    Maryann- Hi I’ve missed you -glad you’re back from your retreat! Yes I was thinking of Babe while the Border Collies seemed to be talking to the sheep 🙂

    Marie- Thanks I hope you come to Utah sometime- the mountains are beautiful and there are some lovely hikes all around 🙂

  3. Marie says:

    What a fun day, and the scenery is amazing where you live Gabi. I would never tire of gazing out at those majestic mountains! Lucky you!

  4. casalba says:

    I LOVE sheepdog trials. One of my favourite tv programmes used to be ‘One Man and His Dog’. I’ve never seen splashdogs though. That must have been tremendous fun.

    I’ve only been to the States twice: New York and Los Angeles. You are reminding me what a large and diverse country it is. Those pictures of the valleys, mountains and forests are stunning.

    PS Don’t blame you for getting a take away after a day like that.

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