Ephraim is one of the slower-growing cities in Utah and could be considered idyllic and comfortable for some, but for those who live there, it’s an area filled with flaws. Its linear growth rate has made this place home to nearly 5,507 people as of 2022. So, with all the individuals and families residing in this city, what are some things that they should have considered before moving here?
To gather more information about this city, I talked to a friend who has lived there for the last few years. Here are 17 reasons why you should not move to Ephraim, Utah.
One of the main reasons my friend didn’t stay in this city is the lack of stores that are available. She stated that it was always frustrating for her to be in the city and want to get new clothes or supplies, and then the immediate dread of having to drive to wherever the closest stores were because there weren’t any good options in the city. What the city does have has slowly gotten worse, further making the desire for different options more prevalent.
16. Lack of Sports
There are some sports provided, but nothing close to other cities that might have more to offer for spectators. This is a deal breaker for some who go out of their way to have a local team to root for each season.
If you enjoy having local sports teams to root for, especially if you want to watch games on TV rather than in person, you don’t want to move to Ephraim, Utah.
Litter is an issue in the city that many might not see as a problem, but it definitely is. At any given point traveling down any road or walkway, you will always see cans, glass, papers, clothes, wrappers, bags, etc. littering the sides of the road, stuck in weeds, and gently blowing in the breeze, going every which way.
The residents of the city are the biggest cause of so much litter, and it’s frustrating to go anywhere when there is so little care being put into the environment.
This small city is home to not only people but hundreds of farm animals as well. This, in itself, is something that you need to consider while looking for places to settle down. Many people can live near farms and actually come to enjoy it and some of the perks that come with the territory. It provides jobs and fresh products for the community. However, there are still plenty who might have a hard time living next to an area like this.
The animals provide a frequent and loud chorus of sounds throughout the day and into the night, and they can be smelled from almost any part of the city, especially on a hot summer day. This can be distracting and nose-crinkling while trying to relax outdoors on a nice day. If you don’t like the smell of farm animals, you don’t want to move to this city.
While there are a few hikes here and there near Ephraim, you will have to travel quite a ways in order to access really good hiking trails. Even so, the number of good hiking trails that can easily be driven to from Ephraim is severely limited. Therefore, if you enjoy hiking often, you should reconsider moving to Ephraim.
If you are an animal lover, this could be a good place for you to live, but keep in mind that almost everyone else here is also an animal lover. It is almost guaranteed that a dog will bark right as you’re trying to go to sleep and continue to do so sporadically throughout the night until it’s almost time for you to get up in the morning.
There are also issues with neighboring deer that come into town almost every day to leave little surprises for you to pick up in your yard. Deer are also hazards when you’re driving at night, as they seem to enjoy popping out of the forest as you drive by, making it so you have to slam on your brakes to avoid hitting them.
11. Lack of Public Transportation
This is an area that is very spread out, so many people rely on cars to get around the city. However, if you don’t have a car, you will be out of luck because of the lack of public transportation in the city.
Renters are hard to put up with, and with this city bringing college students from all over the place, it’s an extremely common frustration that you will have to deal with if you move to this city. They stay in basement apartments, backyard casitas, and homes, causing home values to drop and unnecessarily increasing local traffic.
They also make it hard for people to build a community and make lasting friendships with their neighbors.
Unfortunately, given this city’s lack of industrial growth, there aren’t many options for places to go out to eat nearby the housing developments. The choices come down to what you’re willing to commute for, if you’re able to drive to a neighboring city, there are some places there to enjoy.
At the end of the day, living in this area requires you to stock up on groceries whenever you’re able and just eat at home. This solution would, in turn, help you save money on going out to eat.
Due to this being such a small town in the middle of nowhere, it’s almost inevitable that everyone living within a 5-mile radius of one another knows everything about everyone. With there really never being anything too eventful around, gossip has a way of entertaining people and making its way around town.
This can be difficult to reign in, hard for new people moving in to adjust to, and has the potential to ruin relationships once something’s been shared that wasn’t supposed to be found out by the general public.
A lot of value is placed on the sheep in this city, especially during the running of the sheep each year when the herders take them from one place to another as tradition, and also better prospects for the sheep. Some would say that this happens to be one of the most exciting events to take place in this city, and my friend just so happened to disagree.
She said that on any given day it’s hard to avoid the smell and sound of the sheep, especially since there are so many, but you’re able to ignore it for the most part since they’re minding their own business and some distance away so it doesn’t matter as much. She would start to get annoyed though when the sheep would start coming into the main parts of town, bringing their smell and noise with them, disturbing her while she was trying her best to get things done.
I’ve never seen this phenomenon, but I imagine I’d feel the same way, and I’m sure many people would while looking for a peaceful place to reside. This strange tradition may just be an adored moment for the locals that have lived there for a while, but for newcomers, it might be a little too much. Not to mention how it could potentially block traffic and cause other kinds of hazards to those unaware of how to deal with it.
6. No Diversity
Though this is a college town and a few different kinds of people come along each year to attend the university nearby, the majority of this area follows the trends of most Utah neighborhoods in the sense that the residents are almost always White, conservative, members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. There’s also a temple nearby that attracts this specific group of people as well, which contributes to these people flocking to Ephraim.
It is easy to notice the lack of diversity in this city, which could be a potential dealbreaker for some people.
The majority of Utah faces the same issues a lot of the time with extreme weather. Unfortunately, Ephraim experiences a lot of those same issues. Winters are especially rough here because it’s fairly close to the mountains. These cause obnoxiously frequent and sometimes violent wind tunnels to be created on really cold days that can be hard to avoid.
These winters make it hard for drivers to get from place to place safely since the roads get slicked down with ice, and a lot of people struggle to drive in such hazardous situations.
When there aren’t any busy roads bringing consistently flowing traffic through a city, it makes it harder for people to have the desire to move there. It also becomes challenging for current residents to enjoy what the city offers. Ephraim doesn’t have anything that is being built to provide more potential for visitors, so the odds of the city getting busier in the future are not high.
The only movie theater in town is very run down and there are hardly any other forms of entertainment nearby, even the nearest gas station is a good drive away. However, Ephraim has always had potential and plenty of room for growth, so maybe the more people that find out about it and move to this little city, some other options will get built up and become accessible for the current and future residents.
3. Small Population
Different surveys have shown that economic conditions are much worse in small towns than in bigger cities. With Ephraim’s population decreasing each year, the economic benefits aren’t as accessible as they would be in a more established area.
This can also just be frustrating for the people living here. The college kids that come from busier cities with plenty of things to do could feel bored and annoyed with the lack of options here. The older residents could feel more frustrated that the only people coming in and out of the area are younger students instead of people individuals their age, or families that allow their children to have friends their age.
2. College Town
College students can be inconsiderate, invasive, and hard to live around. The very popular Snow College is located in this area and provides the same concerns. The students there take up housing, flood traffic, and can be rebellious and exhausting to put up with on any given day.
For the most part, my friend’s experiences with a lot of the students weren’t terrible, as they stuck to themselves and were courteous, but other college students ruin it for everyone by acting out, being loud, and being a nuisance to the community. In any given scenario, they’re easiest to live by if you’re able to ignore them altogether and let them do their thing.
One of the biggest issues my friend found while living in this city was isolation. She had always found it really unsettling and claustrophobic but was able to tolerate it for the most part. Then she went on an 18-month service-oriented mission in Florida where she was surrounded by people all the time, interacting and getting to know people, having so much space and things going on at all times. Once she had to come back to Ephraim, she felt cut off from the world, and the silence was almost deafening while making life hard to endure during her stay.
She talked about how a lot of the time she would only have her roommates to talk with outside of class, and there were hardly any fun things to do in the city, so they had to drive miles and miles just to feel like they were part of civilization again.
This can be hard for a lot of people, especially those who aren’t used to the quiet, country lifestyle Ephraim has to offer. Overall, there are many reasons why you shouldn’t move to Ephraim, Utah.