When most people think of Wyoming, visions of the incredible Yellowstone and Grand Tetons National Parks come to mind. And while these places are worth every ounce of hype, fewer people realize that the state parks here are equally incredible. So much so that it’s difficult to pinpoint the best one. Recently, we covered one of the top-rated parks in the nation,
Hot Springs State Park. Now we’ll focus on two equally amazing places: Buffalo Bill State Park and Sinks Canyon State Park. See which one seems the most appealing to you…although chances are you’ll want to plan your visit to both ASAP.
We'll begin with the incredible Buffalo Bill State Park. This exquisite recreation area opened in 1957 and surrounds the Buffalo Bill dam reservoir in Park County, WY. The park derives its name from the infamous William Cody, aka Buffalo Bill, who established his small town of Cody nearby. The park shows off features of Wyoming as iconic and colorful as Buffalo Bill himself.
The mountains in the area are part of the Rockies, specifically the Absaroka Range. In addition to marveling at the spectacular surrounding views, visitors can enjoy several activities such as boating, hiking and fishing.
As seen from the photograph above, the park makes for an enchanted camping spot also. Buffalo Bill State Park has more limited access during the winter and is open consistently from May 1st - October 30th.
Even for those with just a quick afternoon to spare, the park makes for an ideal picnic area - especially with sandwich spots such as "The Local" nearby. Be sure to look out for the spectacular array of wildlife that inhabits the park as well.
And now for our second contender: Sinks Canyon State Park, the most visited in the Lander area. This park is named for its extraordinary geological feature, "The Sinks." This refers to the portion of the Popo Agie River that seems to disappear under the canyon. And the water doesn't reemerge until 1/4 mile later, at an area aptly named "The Rise."
What's even more fascinating about these two sections of the river is that it should take only seconds for the water to ascend out of the cavern, but it actually takes nearly 2 hours. Scientists believe this speaks towards the complicated passageways underground.
The water is one of the most gorgeous features of Sinks Canyon, and visitors are often amazed by the sheer volume of fish that can be found here.
Much like Buffalo Bill State Park, Sinks Canyon offers the great outdoor activities of hiking, fishing and world-class climbing. There are even petroglyphs in the park, offering an incredible window into the history of this natural area. And in addition to rustic campsites, the park also offers yurts for visitors who want a truly unique experience.
So now it’s up to you…which of these Wyoming State Parks do you find the most appealing? With choices like these, you can’t go wrong either way! For more incredible state parks, be sure to learn about these
9 State Parks In Wyoming That Will Knock Your Socks Off.