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Wyoming Territory - Miles Ahead

Adventure On the Plains

Photography by Carl Calvert

Southern Wyoming may not be on everyone's top-10 list for vacation spots, but this rugged plains state has much to offer in the way of scenic beauty, historic sights, a rich array of wildlife, and unique experiences. On a recent cross-country trek we visited southern Wyoming for a week, exploring much of what this great state has to offer.

Southern Wyoming is rich plains territory, with green rolling hills as far as the eye can see, pronghorn antelope around every bend in the road, more cattle than nearly any other state, and miles of open road with hardly another vehicle in sight. The main attraction in this part of Wyoming is Fort Laramie, a historic wilderness outpost that is definitely worth a visit. For over 50 years, Fort Laramie was a way station for trappers, traders, missionaries, emigrants, Pony Express riders, and miners wending their way west. It was also an important staging point for the U.S. Army in its dealings with the plains tribes displaced by migration and settlement. Today, Fort Laramie is a collection of restored and unrestored buildings, barracks, and grounds that stand as a monument to the rich history that took place here. A trip to this fort is indeed a step back in time.

Our first stop took us to the city of Lusk, located near the borders of South Dakota and Nebraska. While in Lusk, our home base was to be the Prairie View campground, which lived up ideally to its name, with a grand view of rich Wyoming prairie fields. Although Lusk is a small town and not abundant with tourist sites, it is located within a few hours of a wide variety of interesting southern Wyoming attractions, including historic forts, museums, historic sites, and an abundance of scenic beauty.

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