Wyoming December 31, 2018
12 Of The Greatest Destinations Most Wyomingites Overlook
There are so many underrated spots in Wyoming that even locals pass up. Take a look at a few of the most criminally overlooked places in the Cowboy State, and plan a time this year to check them out. Whether you love hiking and nature, or prefer to explore history in a different way, you’ll find something in Wyoming that’s beyond your wildest imagination.
We’re aware that these uncertain times are limiting many aspects of life as we all practice social and physical distancing. While we’re continuing to feature destinations that make our state wonderful, we don’t expect or encourage you to go check them out immediately. We believe that supporting local attractions is important now more than ever and we hope our articles inspire your future adventures! And on that note, please nominate your favorite local business that could use some love right now:
1. The Red Desert & Killpecker Sand Dunes
The Killpecker Sand Dunes are just one part of the amazing Red Desert that many Wyomingites have never visited. These fascinating dunes are some of the world's only whistling dunes, which sing when the wind blows over them. This unique recreation area is one place you're sure to fall in love with.
Read more about this phenomenon here
2. Vedauwoo, Medicine Bow - Routt National Forest
The Vedauwoo are made of granite that's over a billion years old, making this spot one of the oldest in the state... though still a billion years younger than the Tetons. These rocks are the perfect place for a lunchtime hike, a picnic, or for rock climbing. You'll even find a campground here!
3. Terry Bison Ranch, Laramie
The Terry Bison Ranch is a great family day-trip destination in Laramie. Take a train ride through the farm to meet and feed the bison, hang out with alpacas, and dine at the Senator's Steakhouse before you head home.
Read more about this super cool destination here
4. Castle Gardens, Riverton
The Castle Gardens are located in the middle of nowhere, outside of Riverton. Take a high clearance vehicle and be cautious when you head out, because you'll be miles from the nearest services. This incredible petroglyph site is worth the journey, and you'll be amazed at the artwork left here by the area's earliest residents.
5. Island Lake, Wind River Range
The hike to Island Lake isn't an easy one, but it's far from impossible. At least once in your life, experience the Wind River Range in all of its glory when you travel to this breathtaking lake in the heart of the Wyoming wilderness.
6. Atlantic City
Atlantic City is one of the world's most famous Casino destin... oh wait, we're in Wyoming! This is a completely different town. Though it takes a high clearance vehicle (or very good weather) to make it down the rocky road that leads you here from Lander, it's so worth the trip to visit the old Mercantile and the Miner's Grubsteak saloon.
7. National Historic Trails Center, Casper
Casper's National Historic Trails Center is one of Wyoming's most fascinating museums. Learn about how Wyoming was settled by pioneers, and passed through by those traveling west. This interpretive museum shows off artifacts from the Oregon Trail, Mormon Trail, California Trail, Bozeman Trail and Pony Express!
8. National Elk Refuge, Jackson
Jackson's National Elk Refuge is a magical place - particularly in winter. The scenery, the sleigh rides, and the gorgeous wildlife turn this spot into a wonderland like you've never seen before.
9. Afton's Intermittent Spring
Afton is known for its elk antler arch, but if you head just out of town, you'll find one of the oddest sights in the state. The Intermittent Spring is a "spring that breathes", meaning it shuts off completely and dries up once an hour, before turning back on into a rushing waterfall.
Read more about this quirky hiking spot here
10. Delta Lake, Grand Teton National Park
Don't take the hike to Delta Lake lightly - it's not an easy trek. You'll need to be prepared for bears and boulder fields, but if you give yourself plenty of time, you'll be rewarded with the most breathtaking sight in Wyoming. The sight of this lake is something that will stay with you for the rest of your life.
Read more about this otherworldly lake here
11. Saratoga Hot Springs Resort
If strenuous hikes aren't your thing, watch the snowfall from one of Wyoming's most comfortable hot spring resorts. You can even relax in your own private teepee. All of the pools are naturally heated by healing mineral water, and the resort offers every amenity you could hope for.
Read more about this brilliant resort here
12. Sinks Canyon State Park, Lander
Sinks Canyon, outside of Lander, is a favorite hiking destination for many Wyomingites. The canyon itself is gorgeous, and The Sinks and The Rise show off the beginning and end of Wyoming's own underground river. The Popo Agie goes underneath the earth for a time before bubbling back up, and it's an interesting place to hike for sure.
Have you visited any of these underrated spots in Wyoming? Tell us your favorite in the comments below!