Spending time on Utah's scenic lakes and streams to fish, water ski or cruise with family and friends is a favorite pastime, judging by boat sales figures within the past few year.

Interest in boating is up and, to the delight of dealers, so is boat sales.What type of boats are people buying? All types!

Sleek power boats in all price ranges can satisfy a number of needs including skiing, sunning, cruising and fishing. Many have been specially built for stability and longevity.

For more expensive tastes, yachts and houseboats with just about every comfort imaginable including full galleys, sleeping quarters for 10 or more, home entertainment systems and tasteful furnishings can be purchased for upwards of $250,000.

Dealers say the most popular boats, especially in the southwest are the bass boats and power boats with large engines.

Boat manufacturers are keeping pace with the public's changing needs and tastes by offering "package" boats, a new concept being introduced to benefit consumers.

Package boats are fish-ski-family boats that are rigged with depth finders, trolling motors, boat motors and trailers at one low price and cost less than if purchased separately.

Also, smaller boats are being manufactured to accommodate compact car owners and single adults who need smaller crafts requiring little assistance.

At the other end of the scale, the public's interest in sleek, European-looking power boats has not gone unnoticed by manufacturers. On the market today are some of the sleekest, fastest boats every produced.

And, consumers will be able to see exactly what's on the market when they visit the 24th Annual Utah Sports, Boat and Travel Show at the Salt Palace. The show will run from Wednesday through Sunday.

The show will present one of the largest, most complete collection of boats ever put under one roof in Utah. The show will be spread over 250,000 square feet in the Palace, and along with all types, shapes and price range of boats, show visitors will see a large selection of RVs, outdoor equipment and be able to get information on vacation and hunting trips.

The cost is $4 for adults, with children under 12 free when accompanied by an adult.