Driving north along Main Street toward North Logan, Hyde Park, Smithfield and farther, you’ll be sure to notice a few things to the east of the road: huge squares of agricultural land, a slew of rocky peaks north of green canyon — Naomi, Beirdneau and Cherry, to name a few — and the Sky View High School “SV” acronym painted in white on the face of the range’s foothills.
What you might not notice, though, is a place that many come for solitude, relaxation and of course, hand-picked fruit.
Just south of the “SV,” pressed up against the mountain range’s precipice, is Mt. Naomi Farms, a family-run business that began operating roughly six years ago. From raspberries and blackberries to corn, peaches and grapes, Mt. Naomi Farms has everything anyone looking for fall fruit could want — you just have to pick it first.
“They are way better than what you find in the grocery story,” said Brenda Meikle, Mt. Naomi Farms owner and manager. “And that’s coming from a city girl. I grew up in Ogden and thought, okay, it can’t be that much better — but once you do it, you’re like, ‘Oh, I get it.’”
Meikle says the farm allows customers to pick their own fruit — what they call the “U-Pick Experience” — because it makes buying fruit more than a simple transaction. The process follows its namesake. It’s an experience, and one, Meikle says, that may be helping farms stay relevant in the public eye.
“There was a number of reasons we started the ‘U-Pick Experience,’” Meikle said. “Our land is getting developed on, and we can either be ticked off at all of our neighbors, or we can work with development and say this is why you want to keep farms here.”
Cache Valley resident Lorie Manning has become familiar with the Mt. Naomi Farms experience. For her, picking fruit and spending time on the farm has served as a way to get away for a while and be to herself.
“I came for the very first time last summer; I had no idea that Cache Valley could have something this beautiful,” Manning said. “You can see all around the valley, and it’s peaceful. You can think to yourself — it’s cathartic.”
Mt. Naomi Farms may be a place to go in Cache Valley for solitude, but it’s not a bad social venue either.
Meikle and the Mt. Naomi Farms crew — which, she says, is mostly comprised of her own children — offer hayrides and pumpkin picking on Mondays, Fridays and Saturdays from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. for $5.
It’s cheap, beautiful and great venue for fall festivities, Meikle says.
More information about Mt. Naomi Farms can be found on their website, mtnaomisfarms.com, or by liking them on Facebook.