10 Spring Activities in Wyoming - Wyoming Magazine


10 Spring Activities in Wyoming


10 Spring Activities in Wyoming

Spring is a great time to get out of the house and explore the riches that Wyoming has to offer. Below are 10 great activities to consider for your spring vacation.

One: Devils Tower National Monument

This fantastic rock formation was made famous by its appearance in the movie “Close Encounters of the Third Kind.” A trail appropriately named Tower Trail, circles the tower in a 1.3-mile long path and can be walked on your own or enjoyed with the guidance of a park ranger. A visitor’s center provides all the information needed to learn about the history of Devils Tower and its environs. The tower was named in 1875 by an interpreter for Colonel Richard Irving Dodge, who translated the native tongue into the words “Bad God’s Tower.” No one is certain of the formation of this piece of rock, but it has been speculated that it is a piece of volcanic rock which cooled underground and has since been exposed by erosion. The rock formation is considered to be sacred to certain Native American tribes including the Lakota Sioux, the Arapho, the Kiowa and the Shoshone.

Two: The National Historic Trails Interpretive Center

The National Historic Trails Interpretive Center is located in Casper, Wyoming. Your visit to the center will give you an extensive knowledge of the first people of Wyoming, mountain men, fur trappers, and trails such as the Mormon trail, the California Trail and the Pony Express route. Visitors to the center will have the opportunity to view these trails and can even walk them a little way if desired.

Three: Fort Laramie National Historic Site

Fort Laramie was first designed as a fur trading post in the early 19th century. The historic site includes a variety of restored buildings, which you can visit during your tour. The post became known as the largest and most well-known military post in the Northern Plains before it was abandoned in 1890. Prior to the assigning of its current name, the center was known by the names of Fort William and Fort John. This 19th century trading post is located at the junction of the Laramie River and the North Platte River in the eastern part of Wyoming.

Four: Hot Springs State Park, Thermopolis, Wyoming

Located in the appropriately-named city of Thermopolis, this natural hot spring discharges more than three million gallons of water per day. In fact, these mineralized hot springs are the largest in the world and form the main feature of the oldest state park in Wyoming. The springs have created a beautiful backdrop of travertine on the banks of the Big Horn River that are similar in appearance to those at Mammoth Hot Springs in Yellowstone.

The hot springs in the Thermopolis state park are surrounded by sinkholes and sulfurous vents. The area is home to a herd of approximately 25 bison. The water from the springs is channeled into two bathing pools, which are the main attraction for park visitors. These hot springs were used for years by Indians who believed in the healing power and the protective capabilities of these springs.

Five: Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area

The Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area reaches from Green River, Wyoming to Utah in the south. This beautiful gorge consists of a huge reservoir along the Green River and surrounding lands. The gorge is the perfect location for fishing, camping, boating, horseback riding and hiking. Recreation guides and outfitters stand ready to help you select the gear and the transportation necessary to make your visit to the Flaming Gorge a resounding success.

Six: Seedskadee National Wildlife Refuge

Wildlife lovers will enjoy visiting the dry shrub and wet river ecosystems of the Seedskadee National Wildlife Refuge. The area is home to a wide variety of wildlife, including Western meadowlarks, badgers, pronghorn and golden eagle. Birds on their annual migration stop by the area during their trip. These include ducks of all species, shorebirds and Trumpeter swans. Visitors to this wildlife refuge can paddle a length of the Green River, walk the trail network and take a tour by car.

Seven: Fossil Butte National Monument

This area near the western border of Wyoming is rich in fossil deposits and geological formations. The area was once the site of a vast lake. The remaining sediments and rock layers of the location are full of ancient fish, birds, insects and plants preserved in stone. If you wish to get the most out of your visit, you should start at the visitors’ center. Here, you will see a wide variety of hundreds of fossils on display along with educational films and hands-on activities. Trails within the monument provide visitors with the opportunity to explore the surrounding area and to observe the geological formations and the local wildlife. Another option is to take the seven-and-a-half mile driving tour with interpretive exhibits interspersed along the way.

Eight: The Community Fine Arts Center

The Community Fine Arts Center is located in Rock Springs. Both residents and visitors are invited to enjoy the epicurean feel of this fine arts center in the high desert of Wyoming. The CFAC features a permanent display of fine art along with a year-round schedule of performing arts programs. The CFAC was founded in 1966 by a science teacher with a love for great art and a vision for his community. Mr. Elmer Halseth traveled across America during the summer months to purchase paintings, drawings and prints for the students of Rock Springs. The original collection contains almost 500 original pieces of art including prints and photographs. Most of the collection is on permanent display in the art gallery and at the center itself. Some of the artists whose works are part of the collection are Ilya Bolotowsky, Raphael Soyer, Edward Chavez, Norman Rockwell, Loren McGiver and Grandma Moses. The art collection continues to grow and expand.

Nine: Yellowstone National Park

No trip to Wyoming is complete without a visit to the famous Yellowstone National Park. Home to Old Faithful, this park is packed full of interesting things to do and see. The park covers a whopping 2.2 million acres of land and includes Mammoth Hot Springs, the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone and West Thumb Geyser Basin. While a large portion of the park is closed during the winter months, the Mammoth and Old Faithful areas are available to the public from late December until March. The grand loop road takes visitors around the park from the comfort of their own car. The many road side picnic areas make it suitable for a family-friendly location to spend a day or two. The more active visitor will enjoy the thousands of miles worth of trails on which to burn energy. You can take a day hike and investigate the backcountry area of the park.

Yellowstone National Park is the world’s very first national park and is larger than Rhode Island and Delaware combined. With more than 1,300 species of plants, 415 species of animals and 400 species of thermopholes, the park is rich in fauna and flora. If you choose to visit the park in the spring, you will be able to enjoy the wildness of the waterfalls as they swell with the melting snow and abundance of wildlife. The park is home to more than 300 geysers and over 290 waterfalls. Containing one of the world’s largest petrified forests, it has indeed earned the name of “wonderland.”

Ten: Spring Skiing

Skiing is a fun activity for the entire family. There are a wide variety of ski resorts to choose from including Snow King Resort, Snowy Range Ski Resort and Hogadon Ski Area.

Snow King Resort located in the heart of Jackson Hole and offers comfortable lodging and campfire cuisine at Hayden’s Post. The resort is not far from shopping centers, restaurants and nightlife and is surrounded by more than 400 acres worth of the Bridger Teton National Forest. The Jackson Hole area is also the gateway to the Grand Teton Park and Yellowstone National Park.

With seating for more than 800 people, Snow Range is the perfect place to host winter weddings, meetings and banquets. The ski resort is located in the beautiful area of Medicine Row-Routt National Forest with breathtaking views. Skiers of all levels of proficiency will find a place at the Snow Range with 27 trails. Snowboarding and skiing lessons are available if desired.

The Hogadon Ski Area features a 600-foot drop from the 8,000-foot peak of Casper Mountain. A total of 19 runs on the 60 acres of this resort give it plenty of adventure. Skiers of all skill levels will find a niche at Hogadon with beginner, intermediate and advanced trails.

Busy families often make time in their year to enjoy doing things together to give themselves a break from the stress of daily living. The 10 activities listed above are sure to refresh and rejuvenate you and your family, leaving you invigorated and ready to tackle life with renewed energy.

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