The Wings & Water tours would not be possible without our highly-trained volunteer Naturalist Guides who are dedicated to providing students with a consistent, fun and effective wetlands education experience. All Naturalist Guides receive continuing training about wetlands ecology, 4th grade science topics, instructional methods and group management. As volunteers, they donate their time, energy and expertise because they believe in the importance of preserving this important and unique habitat.
The home of the Wings & Water Tour is the Great Salt Lake Shorelands Preserve Visitor Center on the eastern shore of the Great Salt Lake near Layton. The 4,400 acre preserve provides critical habitat for the millions of shorebirds and waterfowl who depend on the Lake and its wetlands for nesting, feeding and mating. In 2004, the award-winning visitor center opened to the public to encourage exploration, understanding and appreciation of the Great Salt Lake ecosystem. The Wings and Water Wetlands Education Program is an important part of The Conservancy’s work to educate the community about this fragile and globally significant habitat.
Naturalist-Guided Wings & Water Tours are available Tuesday and Thursday mornings during the fall and spring. The Fall tour season begins in early September and runs through mid October. The Spring tour season runs from mid April to early June. All Naturalist-Guided tours are scheduled on a first-come, first-served basis and are subject to availability.
The tour begins at 10 am promptly and runs approximately 2.5 hours. In order to begin on time, teachers should plan to have their students at the Visitor Center between 9:30 – 9:45 a.m. to use the restrooms and gather in tour groups at the pavilion.
After separating into 3 or 4 smaller tour “pods,” Wings & Water students begin their adventure at the Pavilion and continue on a one-mile loop of boardwalk, stopping along the way to bird watch and explore natural ponds, plant communities and colorful educational panels. The tour culminates at the 30-foot-high viewing tower which gives students a bird’s eye view of the Lake and surrounding wetlands.
Wings & Water Tours were developed to meet the requirements of the 4th grade state science core standards.April 23, 2012