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>>> Pinedale Online:News:March 2004:Unique Summer Vacation Experiences <<<

Wagons A+cross Wyoming. Photo by Wagons A+cross Wyoming.
Wagons A+cross Wyoming

Trail through mountains. Photo by Wagons A+cross Wyoming.
Trail through mountains

Relaxing in camp. Photo by Wagons A+cross Wyoming.
Relaxing in camp

Chuckwagon. Photo by Triple Peak.

Cow Camp. Photo by Triple Peak.
Cow Camp

Lots of horseback riding. Photo by Triple Peak.
Lots of horseback riding

High mountain ridge. Photo by Triple Peak.
High mountain ridge
Unique Summer Vacation Experiences
Wagon Train Rides, Cow Camp
by Dawn Svalberg

Would you like a summer vacation that doesn't have every free moment of your time tied down with activities that have you more exhausted at the end of the day than before you went on vacation? Would you enjoy going someplace where you're exploring through forest, beautiful scenery, fresh air, tumbling mountain streams, towering mountains, seeing lots of wildlife, and reliving western history? Throw in seeing a black night sky where you can REALLY see the stars and Milky Way with not a single human light anywhere for miles around. Imagine spending leisurely days riding through the forest and evenings listening to tales of the old west around a crackling campfire. If this sounds appealing to you, then read on about these two, slow-paced vacations that don't require strenuous activity.

These vacations are relaxed-pace trip experiences that let you unwind, enjoy the scenery, not have to think too hard, and let you relax and forget your 'other life' for awhile. One is a 5-day wagon train ride along the historic Lander Cut-Off of the Oregon Trail riding in a real wagon. The second is staying in a remote mountain forest camp for a week reminiscent of the life of a Wyoming cowboy Cow Camp, the "dream job" of cowboys.

Wagons A+cross Wyoming Historic Wagon Train Trips
Imagine riding in a wagon train across the Oregon Trail a hundred and thirty years ago through Wyoming. Today you can relive a portion of that experience on a five-day expedition with Wagons A+cross Wyoming. This isn't a trek with a long line of wagons, but a small group of one or two wagons and companion riding horses leisurely riding across many portions of the actual path of the Lander Cut-Off of the original Oregon Trail. These 5-day trips take place during July and August and cover approximately 40 miles.

This is a family-run operation by people who love history. It's a slow-paced trip traveling through a wide variety of terrain with stops at points of historic significance. The trip passes marked and unmarked graves of pioneers who didn't finish the long journey along the Oregon Trail. The wagons following the Lander Cut-off, crossing the high desert country, climbing up and over Witherspoon Pass, and dropping to LaBarge Creek on the other side of the pass.

Guests travel in historic iron-rim wheeled freight wagons pulled by draft horses. Guests can ride in the wagon, ride alongside the wagons on saddle horses, or walk as many pioneers did. They stop as often as needed during the day's travel for taking photos, changing riders, or a lunch stop. Camp is moved and the wagons travel 4 of the 5 days, so the view is awesome and new every morning. This trip is a wonderful experience for those wanting to relive some old west history. For more information, visit the Wagons A+cross Wyoming web site link at the bottom of this article.

Triple Peak Cow Camp
What was life like for real cowboys in western Wyoming? Riding horses, tending to the cattle, moving herds to keep them on fresh pasture, branding, doctoring and roundups. For more than 100 years, cattlemen in the Upper Green River Valley in Wyoming have been pasturing their cattle on the lush grasses of the high mountain valleys and streams. The "Dream Job" for any cowboy was to spend the summer in the mountains watching the cattle. Only the most veteran cowboys earned this honor.

Just like people today dream about their 10 acres in the mountains with a little cabin, many cowboys of earlier days loved life working and living in the mountains watching herds on the forest allotments during the summer. Daily life was leisurely and there was no hard fast schedule. Mostly it meant a summer with lots of horseback riding in the forest to check on the cattle in various stream drainages and making sure none strayed away from where they were supposed to be or were injured.

The Triple Peak Cow Camp recreates that leisurely lifestyle. This is not dawn to dusk riding with sore butts in the morning, but a relaxed experience akin to what the mountain cowboys lived during the summer here in Wyoming. This vacation includes riding, history, some time spent with real cowboys working small herds (but not a lot), leisurely paced days, meals cooked in dutch ovens and served from a real chuckwagon, and listening to tales told by real working cowboys of today. Some days will be spent just riding to the many interesting places in the area around the cow camp. There's an old mine nearby, several sites with old tie hack cabins, an old homestead site, and many trails that go through scenic terrain. This is more riding in the forest where the cattle roam than actually tending to cattle. You can dress the part to the nines, or wear blue jeans and a baseball cap, whatever suits your tastes!

Related Links
  • Wagons A+cross Wyoming
  • Triple Peak Cow Camp
  • Pinedale Online!
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