Dubois is a small town in Wyoming that everyone should visit at least once. Dubois provides a great escape into a remote area in the mountains where you can relive the sights, sounds, and traditions of the Old West. Here, you have the chance to experience a true Old West getaway without all the commercialization of a tourist trap. Wyoming’s past is still very much embedded in its culture today. There are many interesting and unique things about this unassuming yet undeniably appealing small town that will make you want to visit.
Let's start with its history. Dubois has a very intriguing historical background. The area began as a migration route for Native Americans which led them to establish villages up in the nearby mountains. Later, settlers crossed the valley and it eventually became home for many cattle and sheep ranchers. The nation's first dude ranch was established here in 1909 by Charles Moore. This ranch still exists today. Supposedly, this is how and where the term 'dude' originated. Not too many years later, The Wyoming Tie & Timber Company was established which was a log milling operation. This operation became so successful, that it ended up being the largest source of railroad ties in the country. During this same time, Dubois became incorporated and today has a population of around 900.
Wildlife & Scenery
Dubois is surrounded by the Absarokas and the Wind River Mountains which are the tallest mountain range in Wyoming. Dubois is nestled between in a valley that consists of desert and badlands. Some of the wildlife you might see here are deer, antelope, and elk. Other interesting things in the area to visit are the Dubois Fish Hatchery, the Shoshone National Forest, the Town Park & Scenic Outlook, and the National Bighorn Sheep Interpretive Center. Dubois is unique in that it is home to one of the nation's largest herds of wild Bighorn Sheep.
Dubois' past adds to the uniqueness of this historic little town. Here, you can retrace the footsteps of Butch Cassidy. You can follow his footsteps down the streets, stroll through Welty's General Store, and pass by the old red stone bank known as the Amoretti and Helmer Bank. Other historic buildings include St. Thomas Episcopal Church, Ramshorn Inn, Cowboy Cafe, Tukadeka Traders and Horse Creek Station, Rustic Pine Tavern, and Outlaw Saloon. You can enjoy traces of the Native Americans with their petroglyphs, hunters' blinds, sheep traps, drive lines, and teepee rings. Other interesting things to take note of are the tie hacks since by the 1920's, Dubois had become the largest tie-hack center in the United States. Union Pass is another neat area that was an important mountain crossing to Native Americans and explorers. The historic sites alone give you plenty of reasons to visit Dubois.
Art & Culture
Dubois is also a great place to check out art designed by the locals. You will find unique sculptures made with antlers at Horse Creek Gallery, Western-themed gifts at Pony Tracks Gallery, and paintings at Silver Sage Gallery and at Tom Lucas Western Art.
There's no better place to enjoy outdoor activities than Dubois. Dubois offers offroad ATV, camping & RV, canoeing, kayaking, dog sledding, fishing, golf, hiking, horseback riding, mountain biking, hunting, nordic skiing, snowmobiling, snowshoeing, and a town park. There are also guided trips available.
Dubois also offers plenty of shopping venues. You can find plenty of unique options for apparel, gifts, souvenirs, health, beauty, and any other necessities you can think of.
You can find plenty of restaurants that reflect the area's culture. Some of these include Cowboy Cafe, Crooked Creek Guest Ranch, Dubois Soda Fountain, El Jarro, Heart-Bar Bar-B-Que, Hooper's, Kathy's Koffee, Nostalgia Bistro, Wilderness Boundary Restaurant, and The Cobbler to name a few. There are also taverns such as the Outlaw Saloon, Ramshorn Inn, and Rustic Pine Tavern. The awesome food is a big draw to the area.
Dubois has some really neat places to stay. Jakey's Fork Homestead is a great Bed & Breakfast, there are plenty of unique cabin rentals, a great selection of inns & hotels, very accommodating RV parks & camping options, and the most memorable stays at guest ranches with spas and guided outdoor activities.