Email from Governor Jim Geringer
Subject: Wonderful Wyoming
Date: Wed, 26 Nov 1997 11:22:23
I'm pleased to give you my thoughts on what to visit in Wyoming. Since we are quite large geographically, it will certainly be a whirlwind trip to see the places that will provide opportunities for family fun and excitement.
Your tour could begin by exploring the capitol city of Wyoming, Cheyenne. Visit one of the many museums such as the Frontier Days's Old West Museum, the newly remodeled (complete in 1998) Wyoming State Museum, F.E. Warren Air Force Base Museum, or the many historic sites: Governor's Mansion, Holliday Park with the Big Boy locomotive (one of 25 ever made), Union Pacific Railroad Depot, which is being converted to a Transportation Museum, and the Wyoming State Capitol.
As you depart Cheyenne and travel west you will see the beautiful Medicine Bow National Forest. Vedauwoo Recreation Area is on the way and is full of weird and beautiful rock formations and is a favorite of hikers and rock climbers. As you continue west, stop at the resort town of Saratoga for a dip in the natural hot springs before continuing north on your way to Lander.
Continue west and you will leave the mountains behind - but not for long - as you travel along the northern edge of the Red Desert, Wyoming's "Outback." Stop and enjoy 1850's Oregon Trail sites, Independence Rock and Devils Gate. As you swing down the southern foothills of the Range, consider stopping at South Pass or Atlantic City, historic ghost towns from the gold boom days. From Lander, continue on US 26 to the town of Dubois and the Wind River Mountains. The breath-taking scenery of the Grand Teton Mountains will give you a hint of the spectacular country to come.
The Jackson Hole valley is one of the most unique corners of the world. You can enjoy shopping, fine dining, and lively nightlife and to revel in the beauty of Jackson Hole and the Teton mountains before venturing north into Yellowstone National Park.
Yellowstone's 3,472 square miles contain hundreds of uncommon sights. Stop at the visitor centers in the Park and inquire about special attractions. The world's most extensive area of geyser activity is located here, harboring more than 10,000 thermal features. This thermal theater actually came about as the result of an enormous volcanic eruption some 600,000 years ago. Heat from the enormous reservoir of molten rock, which produced the massive eruption, still remains relatively close to the surface beneath Yellowstone sustaining the spectacular hot water and steam phenomena for which the Park is so justly famous. Yet, it is probably the favorite Park of many Americans, not because of its thermal fireworks, but because of its wildlife.
Leave the park through the east entrance and continue to Cody. Visit the Buffalo Bill Historical Center and continue your journey into the heart of the Big Horn Basin. If you have time, stop at the new Wyoming Dinosaur center in Thermopolis.
There are two routes over the Big Horn Mountains from Worland/Tensleep to Buffalo on US 16 or via US 14 between Greybull and Sheridan.
Continue through the northern edge of the Thunder Basin National Grassland to Gillette. In the Black Hills National Forest is Devils Tower National Monument which is the nations' first. Continue to Newcastle and check out the Crook County Museum in Sundance which features mementos of Harry Longabaugh, the "Sundance Kid."
Head South to Ft Laramie on US 26 between Torrington and Guernsey. This historic fort dates back to 1834 and was one of the first settlements in Wyoming. It was a major fur trading center, and a major supply point on the Oregon Trail, where wagon trains rested and re-supplied before crossing the Rocky Mountains. Be sure to see the Oregon Trail Ruts in the sandstone cliffs at Guernsey before returning to Cheyenne.
As I said, we are a large state filled with history. I hope you have the opportunity see what I have recommended. These are the highlights of Wyoming and my favorite places to visit. Each time I travel the state, I marvel at Wyoming--"Like no Place on Earth"!!
Governor Jim Geringer