10 Reasons Why We Love Sheridan Wyoming - Wyoming Magazine


10 Reasons Why We Love Sheridan Wyoming


10 Reasons Why We Love Sheridan Wyoming

Beautiful Sheridan, Wyoming nestles against the eastern edge of the scenic Bighorn Mountains. Once a tiny enclave in the Old West, an area frequented by tribal peoples, gold prospectors, cattle ranchers and Bozeman Trail pioneers, today this small yet vibrant town of nearly 18,000 draws tourists from around the nation. They appreciate the friendly community and its numerous nearby wilderness and cultural attractions.

People find many reasons to love Sheridan. It sits along I-90, north of Buffalo and close to the Montana state line. Just consider ten good reasons to spend some time here:

1.Its The Gateway to The Bighorn National Forest

Probably Sheridan’s close proximity to the wild splendor of the Bighorn National Forest draws many people to the community. The Bighorn Mountain Range extends to the East of both the Rocky Mountains and famous Yellowstone National Park in far western Wyoming. Residents and visitors alike enjoy access to engaging outdoor recreational opportunities.

Long a center for many outdoor recreational opportunities, today this area continues to attract nature lovers. People camp, fish, hike, hunt, bike, ski, and climb. They also take photos and savor the beauty of nature in pristine wilderness. Sheridan provides excellent access to the Bighorn National Forest. Buffalo, just 43 miles south of Sheridan along I-90, serves as a gateway to ski slopes during colder months. Sometimes heavy winter snows around Sheridan require road closures on routes leading into the Bighorn Range from the town.

2. A “Cowboy” Cultural Center

Sheridan revels in the lore of cowboy traditions. Many cattle ranches still operate in the region. Cattle drives once trekked through the area.

Visitors to Sheridan can obtain information about Wyoming “dude” ranches and opportunities to attend upcoming Wyoming rodeos, trail rides and other cowboy-themed events at the Sheridan Information Center. Many local stores carry ranch clothing and even some authentic cowboy boots and hats.

3. Historic Main Street

Numerous shopping, eating, dining and sight-seeing opportunities await visitors to the historic Main Street District of Sheridan. Touring through the center of town offers an opportunity to visit local businesses and purchase souvenirs and gifts. Some shops carry authentic Native American crafts. Other items of local interest include cowboy clothes and gear.

Walking through Sheridan, visitors encounter many interesting older buildings, quite a number of them constructed in an “Old West” motif. The massive Sheridan County Courthouse located at 224 South Main provides a great example of stonework widespread in many older public buildings in Western communities. Leave Main Street to visit St. Peter’s Episcopal Church to see beautiful Gothic Revival style architecture, plus some lovely examples of stained glass windows.

Numerous establishments in the town offer comfortable hotel accommodations. A number of inns and bed-and-breakfasts cater to tourists. Visitors can also find rental cabins in the vicinity.

4. Kendrick Park

Kendrick Park offers picnic facilities and recreational opportunities, as do several other municipal parks. With a swimming pool open to residents during warmer months, an expansive lawn, tennis courts and a playground, the site provides a pleasant place for families to relax in Sheridan and share outdoor activities.

5. Driving to Shell Falls

Traveling a short distance to the southwest outside of Sheridan along scenic Highway 14 heading towards Greybull, visitors cross the towering Granite Pass at an elevation of 9,033 feet. It sits slightly over 40 miles away from Sheridan. People who appreciate mountain vistas really enjoy this invigorating drive. A day trip offers an opportunity to appreciate the beauty and vast expanse of the Bighorn Mountain region. Yet another, acclaimed, treat lies in store just on the other side of the Pass: Shell Falls.

This lovely 120-foot waterfall attracts the interest of many travelers. People park near the bridge during warmer months to view the water cascading down the granite rock surface from an overlook. Photographers obtain excellent opportunities to capture broad Western panoramas along the roadway near this site. For a fun excursion, proceed all the way to Greybull and visit the Greybull Museum.

6. Local Festivals

Despite the community’s small town size, Sheridan hosts many popular local celebrations. Rodeo fans attend an annual local rodeo. Western film buffs enjoy January, when a cinema on Main Street presents a selection of classic movies. During the third Thursday of summer months, the historic Main Street District reportedly hosts a “3rd Thursday Street Festival” featuring live music, and many opportunities to sample foods and crafts offered by vendors.

7. Trail End State Historic Site

The stately stone home of Senator John B. Kendrick of Wyoming (1857-1933) and his family now draws many visitors to Sheridan. The Wyoming Department of State Parks and Cultural Resources has provided a self-guiding tour of the mansion, along with exhibits and information about its famous residents. Check opening hours and days before visiting, as the visiting schedule sometimes changes during the year.

Born in Rusk, Texas, shortly after the end of the Civil War, John Kendrick left school at an early age to become a cowboy. During one cattle drive in 1879, he journeyed to Sheridan and fell in love with the area. He soon found work on a local ranch. Eventually, the young Texan married his supervisor’s daughter and started his own cattle company. He became a successful banker, Wyoming Governor and Senator.

The elegant Kendrick mansion constructed in a Flemish Revival style provides an interesting perspective on affluent lifestyles in Wyoming in the past. President Teddy Roosevelt assembled many of his “Rough Riders” from the state. The President spent several years ranching in Wyoming during the 1800s and visited Sheridan and the Bighorn Range.

8. Local Museums

Sheridan County Museum earns high praise from visitors for its excellent displays designed to introduce visitors and local residents to the fascinating history of the Sheridan area. Although small in size, it offers a rich introduction to Sheridan County’s past.

A drive outside of Sheridan south along I-90 will bring you to a State Historical Site, Ft. Phil Kearny. The public can tour the remaining stockade of the famous western military fort that once figured so prominently in events during the 1800s. A visitor’s center provides historical exhibits and information about the wars between the Sioux and the U. S. government.

9. Horseback Riding

With many “dude ranches” and rural bed-and-breakfast establishments in the region, and miles of trails in the Bighorn Mountains, visitors to the Sheridan area who wish to go horseback riding have the opportunity to enjoy guided rides along outdoor paths. This type of recreational activity offers a memorable vacation for urban visitors who may not always enjoy frequent opportunities to ride horses outside of equestrian stables.

Horses figured prominently in local transportation during the 1800s. Many residents of Sheridan, Wyoming keep horses as pets and work animals. The local Chamber of Commerce can direct tourists to businesses offering horseback riding tours and other equestrian events.

A Great Place to Visit

When you visit Sheridan, Wyoming, the beauty of the setting and numerous fun vacation activities may cause you to fall in love with the town. Enjoy a romance with North Central Wyoming!

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