Wyoming, Idaho, June/July 2023 – Part 2

We met up with family in Wyoming. This is part 2 of 3 with some impressions from this 3-week (20 straight nights of camping) trip. (Part 1, Part 3)

Wind River Range
From Lander we drove north on Hwy 287 and then 26 to Forest Road 263 where we crossed the mountains north of the Wind River Range. Along the way we looked for a camping spot, but every time we opened as much as a window we were swarmed by mosquitoes. So we went all the way to just north of Green River Lakes where we found a nice camping spot for 2 nights.
The next day we hiked around the first (bigger) lake. Mornings here were cold with temps below freezing and therefore ice on tent and truck. We also had our daily T-storms. One presented us with a nice rainbow. As much as we would have liked to stay somewhere for multiple nights, the mosquitoes disagreed.

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Wyoming Range
From Green River Lakes we drove via Hwy 191 and 189 through Big Piney and then west to the Wyoming Range. Not a big surprise, but one can hope, the mosquitoes were here with the same force as in the rest of Wyoming. So we spent more time driving than outdoors. This way we stumbled across the Lander Cut-Off. A shortcut to the Oregon Trail that cut off about 1 week and 80 miles of travel. Along the forest roads we saw signs recalling some of the events that happened in various places. Sitting in our air-conditioned trucks, with mosquitoes the biggest threat out there, we marveled at how things have changed in just 160 years since people died here crossing creeks, injuries, etc.
I had hoped to hike up Wyoming Peak, but a few miles before the trailhead the otherwise great road was blocked by 2 big trees. The end of June is still early in the summer season in these parts and nobody with a chainsaw had been through here yet. Our route out on the west side of the range was also blocked. This time by big, deep snow patches.
The alternate route further north led us past the Tri-Basin Divide. Water from here flows either to the Gulf of California (Colorado River), the Pacific Ocean (Columbia River), or the Great Basin. The Greys River starts right up here as a little stream. We followed it 60 miles down to where it is a real river. Just before getting to the pavement, we found a good camp spot in the forest not far from the river.

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Grand Teton National Park
Now we were close to the Grand Teton NP and decided to visit it. We expected people, but not the immense crowd we encountered. It wasn’t even possible to get into the parking lots for the most well-known viewpoints. So we had a tailgate lunch in a small parking lot, admired the mountains, and headed out across the valley to the National Forest hills for camping. We found a very nice spot, but of course, the meadow we were in was buzzing with mosquitoes. Luckily the tent is big and has a big view window in the back.
The next day we drove to the pavement, aired up, and our travel companions for the last 9 days headed back south and east. We decided to make a detour through Idaho on the way home.

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The story continues with Part 3.

One thought on “Wyoming, Idaho, June/July 2023 – Part 2

  1. Great scenery. Sounds like it was a real driving adventure. The Wind River range brought back good memories and they’re just as majestic from the east side as the west

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