Most of the history
of Grand County has been the story of small family farms and orchards,
of mining for potash and uranium, and of livestock. Large sheep and
cattle companies have found abundant forage for their livestock in the
canyons and in the La Sal Mountains, and cowboys and outlaws figure
prominently in the area's folklore. The uranium boom of the 1950s brought
the first real population expansion to the area and witnessed the creation
of a few large fortunes as well as many failures.
the income from tourism has been the county's major economic resource.
Arches National Monument was established in 1929, and consistently increasing
numbers of visitors led to its being upgraded to national park status
in 1971. During the 1970s and 1980s Moab became perhaps the most important
center for river-running, mountain bicycling, and four-wheel drive recreation
in Utah, and the prospects seem good that tourism and recreation will
remain important to the county for the foreseeable future.