About Franklin County
The beautiful farmland of Cache Valley occupies the center of Franklin County. Mountains rim the valley to the east, north and west, while Cache Valley extends many miles into Utah on the south. The Bear River flows into Cache Valley from the north and passes through the middle of the valley in riverbottoms considerably lower than the rest of the valley. Preston, the county seat and largest city, is situated in the middle of Cache Valley’s farmland.
The Bear River Mountains, which rise dramatically on the eastern side of Cache Valley, reach to elevations of 9,400 feet, covered with forests, punctuated by rocky outcroppings. The Cub River Canyon begins near Franklin, heading northward at first, then turning westward into the heart of the Wasatch Mountains. A beautiful grassy range of hills separate the Cub River Canyon and Cache Valley’s eastern edge.
Franklin County has an interesting geologic past. Several thousand years ago, Lake Bonneville covered all of Franklin County except the mountains, which formed the northern shores of this inland sea which reached as far south as Arizona, covering much of Utah. At one point a lava flow blocked the Bear River in Gem Valley further north, and rerouted it into Lake Bonneville. This caused the lake level to rise until the mountains were breached just on the northern boundary of the county. The Lake then discharged a river of water “several times the size of the Amazon River” northward through Red Rock Pass and into Bannock County.
Franklin County covers an area of 665 square miles, the population is 11,590 (as of 2000). U.S. Highway 91 enters the county from the south, passes through Preston, and heads northwest through Red Rock Pass. Idaho Highway 34 follows the Bear River northeast into Caribou County. Idaho Highway 36 crosses the county east to west, crossing the Wasatch Mountains into Bear Lake Valley to the east.
For More Information:
See Wikipedia’s Franklin County article.