Nature September 14, 2017
Here Are The 9 Strangest Rock Formations In Wyoming You Have To See To Believe
Wyoming is full of strange and wonderful sights. The unique rock formations scattered around the state are just one example. It’s true we have some pretty amazing mountain ranges, but some of our smaller natural stone creations are so peculiar, they rival even the Grand Tetons as attractions in their own right. Here is a sampling of some of the strangest rock formations in the Cowboy State. Some are more well-known than others, but they all have to be seen to be believed.
During these uncertain times, please keep safety in mind and consider adding destinations to your bucket list to visit at a later date.
1. Castle Rock, Green River
It's hard to picture the high desert of Wyoming as a land of lakes, but many of the odd rock formations here attest to the fact that a lot of the region was submerged in prehistoric times. The stately stone sitting watch over the town of Green River is one such formation. The layers of strata in this geological oddity are brimming with fossilized plants and fish.
2. Hell's Half Acre, Natrona County
This canyon is filled with odd geological formations. It was carved out centuries ago by the Powder River, and the Wyoming wind is credited with further eroding the clay and shale into the spikes and spires you see today.
3. Pilot Butte, Sweetwater County
This distinctive butte on White Mountain is exceptional for its historic significance. The easy to recognize characteristics and visibility from far off made it a landmark for pioneers traveling west. When they saw it in the distance, they knew Green River was drawing near.
4. Castle Gardens, south of Riverton
These oddly shaped sandstone outcroppings are a double attraction. First, the formations, carved from the stone by eons of wind, have taken the shape of castle-like towers and turrets, giving the site its name. Then, there is the collection of petroglyphs etched into the stone and dating back as far as 1,000 to 1,250 AD.
5. Man's Face Hill, Green River
This hillside in Green River Wyoming makes the list of strange formations for it's uncanny resemblance to a human profile. The community has such a fondness for the collection of outcroppings that create the illusion that they decorate the summit with a lit Christmas tree each December.
6. Vedauwoo, Medicine Bow-Routte National Forest
The granite outcroppings at Vedauwoo are so unique, they almost don't look real. Etched over time by wind, water, and ice, they get their surreal color from white quartz and pink feldspar. The shapes are odd, as well, and kind of look like building blocks for a giant toddler.
7. Washakie Badlands, Washakie County
The badlands just west of Ten Sleep hold a collection of strange rock formations. Like some in other areas of the state, a few look like castles and other man-made structures, while others amazingly appear to defy gravity.
8. Devil's Tower, WY-110, Crook County
No list of weird Wyoming rock formations would be complete without the Devil's Tower National Monument. This laccolithic butte is thought to be the neck of a prehistoric volcano, possibly formed as magma oozing from the core cooled. Native American legend claims that the verticle marks on the surface of the monument were made by a giant bear.
9. Boar's Tusk, Sweetwater County
Standing guard at Killpecker Sand Dunes, this tooth-shaped geological oddity towers nearly 400 feet above the desert. Like Devil's Tower, this natural wonder is believed to be what remains of an ancient volcano.
What other odd rock formations have you seen around Wyoming?