Wyoming may be the least populated state human-wise, but our wildlife residents are flourishing. No matter where you go in the Cowboy State, you’re likely to catch a few glimpses of the native animal life, but why gamble? Follow this epic wildlife trail across Wyoming to maximize your wildlife viewing opportunities.
This wildlife trail will take you almost full-circle on an unforgettable tour of Wyoming.
Bighorn National Forest
Start out in northern Wyoming at the Bighorn National Forest. Naturally, you can see bighorn sheep here, along with wild turkeys, golden and bald eagles, and white-tailed deer.
Traveling west, you'll reach McCullough Peaks just before Cody. Wild mustangs, rumored to be descendants of horses from Buffalo Bill Cody's Wild West Show, roam the area. Thanks to the BLM and non-profit groups, the horses are kept healthy and population is controlled with fertility control measures.
Yellowstone National Park
Further west, the geysers and other geothermal attractions at Yellowstone National Park are worth seeing, but the wildlife are the real stars of the show. So many different species call the area home including elk, grizzly bears, gray wolves, and bald eagles, among others.
Grand Teton National Park
Though you can't tackle this trail all in one day, Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Parks are close enough to each other that you could do some wildlife viewing in both on the same day. Here you'll see beautiful creatures such as moose, bison, otters, mule deer, trumpeter swans, and golden and bald eagles.
Wind River Range
The Wind River Range sits on about 2,800 square miles roughly 66 miles southeast of Grand Teton National park. It includes high peaks and deep, gorgeous valleys, and the area makes a beautiful home for many wild critters such as pronghorns, elk, moose, mountain lions, and grizzly bears.
Seedskadee National Wildlife Refuge
As you head south on the Wyoming wildlife trail, you'll turn right onto US-191 and take a slight detour to hit the next destination: Seedskadee National Wildlife Refuge. As a refuge, naturally, this area is one of the most rich in wildlife featuring around 220 species of all kinds including birds. On this leg of the trip you might see coyotes, white-tailed jackrabbits, foxes, mule deer, trumpeter swans, and bald eagles.
You might wonder if a desert would be a thriving habitat for more than a few species of wildlife, but Wyoming's Red Desert is a one-of-a-kind place where around 350 mammals and birds live. At this stop along the trail you're likely to see grouse, pygmy rabbits, coyotes, black footed ferrets, and desert elk.
Medicine Bow National Forest
At the bottom of the trail, just as you're about to swing north, you'll want to stop at Medicine Bow National Forest. Other than brown and black bears in higher elevations, the wildlife that will greet you here will be more along the lines of small to mid-sized. Some you're sure to spot include marmots, badgers, snowshoe hares, wolverines, and coyotes. Keep an eye out for birds, too, such as nuthatches, chickadees, warblers, sapsuckers, and the state bird: the meadowlark.
Driving north from Medicine Bow, you'll reach Casper Mountain about 12 miles before Casper. It's a beautiful place for a hike or even to camp, and there are loads of wildlife to be seen. Black bears, mule deer, pronghorns, bald eagles, foxes, and elk are among the many different types of animals that live in the area.
Bear Lodge Mountain
Bear Lodge Mountain in the northeastern corner of Wyoming is the last stop on the trail. Wildlife to keep an eye out for here include mountain goats and mountain lions, big horn sheep, mule deer, and elk.
What other spots in Wyoming belong on this list of places the wildlife hangs out?