Utah Homes Slide Off a Cliff, as Does the Nation

(AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

There were some shake-ups in Utah Saturday morning. They weren’t caused by the earthquakes that happen from time to time, and they were not caused by Ron DeSantis’ jet touching down, sending shockwaves through the safe spaces of the Left across the state. No, these shake-ups were caused by a home sliding into a canyon in the wee hours and the partial collapse of another.


According to Fox 13 in Salt Lake, people in the Hidden Canyon Estates in Draper called 911 over rumbling in the neighborhood. As it turned out, one home and half of another had slid off of a cliff. The owners of one home had planned to live out the rest of their days in their new domicile, but were forced to vacate when both homes were deemed unsafe in October. One family said that they had experienced cracking in the drywall, the patio, and the foundation, sinking, and shifting ground. No one was injured in the incident and nearby neighbors were evacuated.


The developer, EDGE, has said that it had bought the homes back from the owners. Now it just remains to be seen who is next. Aside from interesting geography and topography, Utah is also home to tricky soil in some places. And with the rush to build new homes in recent years, the people in Hidden Canyon Estates might not be the only ones who receive bad news or who are in for some surprises. When people flush with cash moved in from California and other states on the West Coast, there was an upswing in building higher up on the mountains. Yes, the views are spectacular and you are theoretically close to nature. But the danger from wildfires can be greatly enhanced, and as in the case of the people at Hidden Canyon estates, the soil on the edge of a canyon may not be what you had hoped for.

I’ve been in other places around the state where the presence of bentonite clay in improperly compacted soil has caused homes to literally crack in two. A few years ago, my wife and I had the chance to shop for lots and even look at a cabin bordering the Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest. And the prices were good for that kind of property. Too good. As in, we wouldn’t-even-need-a- massive-loan kind of good. And after a little research, we found out why. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) had a warning for the area, noting that some of the land was prone to instability. Our dream cabin could have turned into a legal and insurance nightmare.


Granted, looking at a USGS report is not something that is always done during due diligence, but when it comes to new construction, which was the case in Draper, making sure the soil will support your home should be SOP. But alas, for some, the allure of a dream home in a dream location with a dream view is just too much. Even if the price tag hovers around $1 million, plus or minus. And a part of me doesn’t blame them. Who wouldn’t become twitterpated at the idea of sitting out on the deck surrounded by mountains, a slight, crisp fall chill in the air, and a hot toddy in hand as you watch the kids make ‘smores at the fire pit? But when the view is of your house at the bottom of a canyon, the dream is pretty much dead.

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Of course, those are not the only people who bought into the idea of a dream house without thinking about the foundation. Under cries of “Orange man bad,” “A return to normal,” and “The adults are back in charge,” Americans bought into the idea that they could have a dream country in the last two elections.

And then what happened? Eric Adams is declaring that New York City is on its knees because of illegal immigration, and PJ Media and other outlets have reported how no one is safe in the Big Apple. Recently, the streets of Chicago were overrun with out-of-control teens, and major U.S. cities are now havens for homelessness, rampant drug use, and uncontrolled crime. Shootings continue to mount; over the weekend, there were multiple shootings — at a Sweet Sixteen party, no less — in Alabama. And there were, of course, the Nashville elementary school murders after which everyone rose to the defense of the killer.


News broke last week that an 18-year-old man walked into a shower at a high school, proclaimed himself trans, and exposed himself to a group of freshman girls. Recently, the Eastern Lebanon County School District board of directors in Pennsylvania voted to close all district locker rooms for the remainder of the year. This followed an incident that as near as I can tell, involved a girl entering the boy’s locker room. I might have that backward. Who knows what people are calling themselves these days?

Former Disneyworld employee Jorge Diaz Vega was fired and arrested last month for amassing a large collection of upskirt photos while on the job. But given the venue, that is not as shocking as it would have been 15 years ago.

And you already know what is happening to fuel and grocery prices and have seen what has become of your retirement.

You get the idea. I could probably turn the comment section into an open thread to hear all of your stories, which would flesh out just how far this country has fallen since 2020. But like the people whose home is sitting at the bottom of a Utah canyon waiting to be hauled away, people in the United States were caught up in a vision. Soy boys and women juggling a cell phone and a latte behind the wheel of an SUV voted for this. Everyone with an “In This House, We Believe” sign voted for this. Every parent who took their kids to a drag brunch voted for this. Every college student who led with their feelings about DEI voted for this. Everyone who wanted to feel superior and on the “right side of history” voted for this. And no one thought to look at the soil.


And now the house is sliding off the cliff. And the view sucks. I have no problem with people wanting to slide off the cliff. I do, however, have a problem when they want to drag the rest of us along.


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