About Thompson Springs
Thompson Springs is a tiny remnant of a town located on the old Highway 6 & 50 in the Utah deserts. The bright-colored rocks and gray slopes of the Book Cliffs rise prominently above the town immediately to the north. Thompson Canyon passes into the Book Cliffs and leads to the spring for which Thompson Springs is named, several miles up the canyon. The spring was named for E.W. Thompson, who lived near the spring and operated a sawmill.
In 1883 the Denver and Rio Grande Western Railroad was built along the base of the hills under the Book Cliffs. A station stop was established here and in 1890 a post office opened with the name Thompson’s. In 1911, a coal mining operation began in Sego Canyon, a tributary to Thompson Canyon. In the 1920’s, U.S. Highway 6 & 50 was built through Thompson, paralleling the train tracks, bringing travelers through the town.
The mines closed around 1950, and in 1970 Interstate 70 was built, bypassing the town a mile to the south. The town began to decline and today many houses are abandoned, along with a motel and service station on the old highway. A modern gas station operates at the freeway interchange.
The population according to the 2010 census is 39. The elevation 5,145 feet above sea level. The nearest town is Green River, a good half hour’s drive to the west on the freeway. There are no other nearby towns. The Colorado River passes by several miles to the south, and the boundary of Arches National Park is also several miles to the south, although there is no nearby entrance to the park.
For More information
See the Wikipedia article on Thompson Springs.
a dirt road
Old Highway 6 & 50
Salt Valley Gorge Road
State Highway 94
Thompson Canyon Road
Valley City Road