I was driving to Gunlock Reservoir the other day in my swimsuit, ready to relax in the sun and to picnic by the reservoir when I saw a sign for Fire Lake Park, at Ivins Reservoir, on the side of the road near Kayenta. I made a U-turn to investigate. I found a wonderful surprise!
I drove right up to a beautiful park with restrooms and a swimming area. It was about 10:00 am and I was the only person there. I walked around the swimming area to find a man-made spillway shooting water into the swimming area. On the other side of the swimming area is beautiful Ivins Reservoir.
I found a place on the beach, put down my beach mat and enjoyed the park by myself for about a half an hour before several families came to enjoy the park with me. The sand is brilliant red and it is soft and clean. When I was hot, I cooled off in the clean water of the swimming area. I stayed for about two hours reading, cooling off in the water and just enjoying the beautiful surroundings of the area. Families brought picnics, umbrellas, water toys and coolers. There are no dogs or cats allowed at the park. There is also no lifeguard, so you are advised to swim at your own risk.
After I got home I immediately began to do research to find out more about my wonderful surprise - Fire Lake Park at Ivins Reservoir. I found out from the St. George News that Fire Lake Park officially opened to the public during the summer of 2016. The name “Fire Lake” came from the Shivwits name for the reservoir. Part of the park lies within the borders of the Shivwits Reservation. The area between the swimming area and Ivins Reservoir is a levee. The swimming lagoon is fed with fresh water. Tons of sand was brought in to create the soft, red sand beach and swimming area. I found out that water from Gunlock Reservoir is transported through a newly built pipe system into Ivins Reservoir and the swimming area of Fire Lake Park. The article states that the park is “a collaborative effort between Ivins City, the Washington County Water Conservancy District, the Shivwits Band of Paiutes, Washington County, two irrigation companies and developer Terry Marten, who provided the land for a parking area well away from the water’s edge.”
I have to admit that I almost didn’t blog about this wonderful secret because I want it to remain a wonderful surprise for people who “take the road less travelled,” make a U-turn when they see a sign and allow their curiosity to lead them to a beautiful surprise in the dessert!