Bluff, Utah

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Bluff, Utah
CDP
Bluff, Utah (from east).jpg
Location in San Juan County and the state of Utah.
Location in San Juan County and the state of Utah.
Coordinates: 37°17′1″N 109°33′10″W / 37.28361°N 109.55278°W / 37.28361; -109.55278Coordinates: 37°17′1″N 109°33′10″W / 37.28361°N 109.55278°W / 37.28361; -109.55278
Country United States
State Utah
County San Juan
Founded April 6, 1880
Founded by Silas S. Smith
Named for Bluffs (cliffs) along the San Juan River
Area
 • Total 22.7 sq mi (58.7 km2)
 • Land 22.1 sq mi (57.2 km2)
 • Water 0.6 sq mi (1.4 km2)
Elevation 4,324 ft (1,318 m)
Population (2000)
 • Total 320
 • Density 14.5/sq mi (5.6/km2)
Time zone Mountain (MST) (UTC-7)
 • Summer (DST) MDT (UTC-6)
ZIP code 84512
Area code(s) 435
FIPS code 49-06700[1]
GNIS feature ID 1425842[2]

Bluff is a census-designated place (CDP) in San Juan County, Utah, United States. The population was 320 at the 2000 census.

Geography[edit]

Bluff is located at 37°17′1″N 109°33′10″W / 37.28361°N 109.55278°W / 37.28361; -109.55278 (37.283696, -109.552871),[3] in the scenic and very sparsely populated southeastern Utah canyonlands of the Colorado Plateau.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 22.6 square miles (58.7 km²), of which, 22.1 square miles (57.2 km²) of it is land and 0.6 square miles (1.4 km²) of it (2.43%) is water.

Climate[edit]

Bluff has a cold desert climate (BWk) typical of southern Utah. Winters are cool and dry with occasional snow. Despite averaging just over 8” of snow per year, only 3 seasons have gone without snow (1928-1929, 1963-1964 and 1995-1996). The snowiest season was 1978-1979 with 28.0”. Nights are chilly, falling below freezing on 141 days per year while only 7 days fail to rise above freezing. Bluff is in hardiness zone 7A with an average yearly low of 1. Spring comes quickly in February and is the driest time of the year. Temps are usually warm although snow has fallen as late as April (although very rarely). The average last freeze is April 25. Summer is long and hot with occasional thunderstorms. Days reach 90 on an average of 86 days and 100 on 16. Despite the hot days, nights cool down to the low 60s. While September is still hot, temperatures cool down rapidly in October and November. Snow has fallen in October, but usually holds off until late November. The first freeze typically comes on October 7.

Climate data for Bluff 1981-2010, extremes 1911-2018
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °F (°C) 69
(21)
76
(24)
86
(30)
94
(34)
102
(39)
106
(41)
109
(43)
106
(41)
100
(38)
95
(35)
85
(29)
69
(21)
109
(43)
Average high °F (°C) 44.4
(6.9)
52.3
(11.3)
62.9
(17.2)
72.0
(22.2)
81.8
(27.7)
92.0
(33.3)
96.5
(35.8)
93.4
(34.1)
84.8
(29.3)
71.0
(21.7)
55.8
(13.2)
44.4
(6.9)
70.9
(21.6)
Average low °F (°C) 20.2
(−6.6)
25.5
(−3.6)
32.4
(0.2)
39.2
(4)
47.9
(8.8)
55.0
(12.8)
63.1
(17.3)
61.8
(16.6)
51.6
(10.9)
38.4
(3.6)
27.5
(−2.5)
20.1
(−6.6)
40.2
(4.6)
Record low °F (°C) −22
(−30)
−13
(−25)
4
(−16)
16
(−9)
23
(−5)
33
(1)
40
(4)
37
(3)
23
(−5)
10
(−12)
−2
(−19)
−22
(−30)
−22
(−30)
Average precipitation inches (mm) 0.74
(18.8)
0.66
(16.8)
0.56
(14.2)
0.50
(12.7)
0.49
(12.4)
0.19
(4.8)
0.70
(17.8)
0.84
(21.3)
0.90
(22.9)
0.85
(21.6)
0.69
(17.5)
0.65
(16.5)
7.77
(197.3)
Average snowfall inches (cm) 2.9
(7.4)
2.1
(5.3)
0.2
(0.5)
0.1
(0.3)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
T 0.4
(1)
2.8
(7.1)
8.5
(21.6)
Average precipitation days (≥ 0.01 in) 4.3 4.3 3.4 3.3 2.9 1.5 4.2 4.9 4.1 4.1 3.1 3.6 43.7
Average snowy days (≥ 0.1 in) 1.7 1.1 0.1 0.1 0 0 0 0 0 0.1 0.2 1.4 4.7
Source: NWS Nowdata for Bluff from NWS Salt Lake City. Normals 1981-2010, extremes since 1911.

Demographics[edit]

As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 320 people, 135 households, and 75 families residing in the CDP. The population density was 14.5 people per square mile (5.6/km²). There were 191 housing units at an average density of 8.6/sq mi (3.3/km²). The racial makeup of the CDP was 62.50% White, 35.00% Native American, 0.94% from other races, and 1.56% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 4.06% of the population.

There were 135 households out of which 28.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 47.4% were married couples living together, 5.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 44.4% were non-families. 35.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 5.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.37 and the average family size was 3.25.

In the CDP, the population was spread out with 25.9% under the age of 18, 8.8% from 18 to 24, 29.1% from 25 to 44, 25.6% from 45 to 64, and 10.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females, there were 102.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 104.3 males.

The median income for a household in the CDP was $23,906, and the median income for a family was $30,938. Males had a median income of $31,563 versus $14,792 for females. The per capita income for the CDP was $13,567. About 22.8% of families and 21.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 27.7% of those under age 18 and 25.0% of those age 65 or over.

History[edit]

Characteristic scenery of Bluff, Utah
The Navajo Twin Rocks, an attraction in Bluff, November 2007

Under the direction of John Taylor, Silas S. Smith and Danish settler Jens Nielson led about 230 Mormons on expedition to start a farming community in southeastern Utah. After forging about 200 miles (320 kilometers) of their own trail over difficult terrain, the settlers arrived on the site of Bluff in April 1880.[4] (The trail followed went over and down the "Hole In the Rock", which now opens into one of the tributaries of Lake Powell.) The town was named for the bluffs near the town site.[5] The town’s population had declined to seventy by 1930[citation needed] but rebounded during a uranium prospecting boom in the 1950s.[4] With the uranium decline in the 1970s Bluff again declined and now remains a small town with about 300 residents.

Education[edit]

The San Juan School District operates Bluff Elementary School in Bluff.

Attractions and events[edit]

  • Winter Balloon Festival, January [1]
  • Bluff Arts Festival, October [2]
  • Utah Navajo Fair, September [3]
  • Navajo Twin Rocks

Notable people[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on 2013-09-11. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  2. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  3. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23. 
  4. ^ a b History of Bluff
  5. ^ Van Atta, Dale (Jan 22, 1977). "You name it - there's a town for it". The Deseret News. p. 15. Retrieved 18 October 2015. 

External links[edit]