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Pinedale Online > News > August 2004 > Big Sandy

Temple Peak over Big Sandy Ranch. Photo by Pinedale Online.
Temple Peak over Big Sandy Ranch

Big Sandy Creek near Buckskin Crossing. Photo by Pinedale Online.
Big Sandy Creek near Buckskin Crossing

Big Sandy Trailhead. Photo by Pinedale Online.
Big Sandy Trailhead

Indian Paintbrush. Photo by Pinedale Online.
Indian Paintbrush
Big Sandy
by Clint Gilchrist
August 1, 2004

Big Sandy is the main trailhead for the southern end of the Wind River Mountains with access to the popular Cirque of the Towers and the Highline trail system that reaches all the way to Union Pass at the north end of the Wind River Mountains.

Big Sandy trailhead and campground are about 57 miles from Pinedale, with about half paved and the other half dirt road. The last 10 miles is a narrow road that is usable by almost any vehicle this time of year, but it has to be taken slow. Plan on a couple hour trip one way.

There are 12 developed camping spots at the trailhead with parking, tables, restrooms and fire pits. On Sunday, August 1, 2004, only three of the camping spots were being used. For those who donít want to camp, Big Sandy Lodge has 10 guest cabins just a couple miles from the trailhead. There are also numerous undeveloped camping spots along the way. The trailhead is busy this time of year. On Sunday at 3 pm we counted 72 vehicles at the trailhead from 21 different states.

There is a lot of history along Big Sandy Creek. The first Mountain Men in the valley traveled down Big Sandy Creek to reach the Green River and gave the creek its name in 1825. Just after the Mountain Man era, John Fremont and Kit Carson visited the area in 1842 on a government expedition. In 1858, the Lander Trail was created along the creek as a short cut for the emmigrants on their way to Oregon. Thousands of wagons traveled the trail during the last half of the 1800's. There are several historical markers along the way marking this rich history.



Related Links
  • Big Sandy Photo Gallery
  • Big Sandy Lodge
  • Continental Divide National Scenic Trail
  • Big Sandy Trailhead
  • Big Sandy Campground
  • Cirque of the Towers

  • Big Sandy Opening. Photo by Pinedale Online.
    Big Sandy Opening

    4 Wheeling near Lander Trail. Photo by Pinedale Online.
    4 Wheeling near Lander Trail

    Laturio Mountain above Trailhead. Photo by Pinedale Online.
    Laturio Mountain above Trailhead

    Temple Peak. Photo by Pinedale Online.
    Temple Peak

    Big Sandy Creek. Photo by Pinedale Online.
    Big Sandy Creek

    Temple Peak. Photo by Pinedale Online.
    Temple Peak

    Purple Bells. Photo by Pinedale Online.
    Purple Bells

    Big Sandy Lodge. Photo by Pinedale Online.
    Big Sandy Lodge

    Mud Lake at Big Sandy Lodge. Photo by Pinedale Online.
    Mud Lake at Big Sandy Lodge

    Temple Peak. Photo by Pinedale Online.
    Temple Peak

    Huge Mushroom. Photo by Pinedale Online.
    Huge Mushroom

    Indian Paintbrush Buds. Photo by Pinedale Online.
    Indian Paintbrush Buds

    Buckskin Crossing. Photo by Pinedale Online.
    Buckskin Crossing

    Buckskin Crossing. Photo by Pinedale Online.
    Buckskin Crossing

    Corrals at Trailhead. Photo by Pinedale Online.
    Corrals at Trailhead

    Big Sandy Creek at Trailhead. Photo by Pinedale Online.
    Big Sandy Creek at Trailhead

    Beginning of Trail. Photo by Pinedale Online.
    Beginning of Trail

    Big Sandy Campground. Photo by Pinedale Online.
    Big Sandy Campground

    Camping Near Big Sandy Creek. Photo by Pinedale Online.
    Camping Near Big Sandy Creek

    Independent Mountain. Photo by Pinedale Online.
    Independent Mountain

    Dutch Joe Guard Station. Photo by Pinedale Online.
    Dutch Joe Guard Station

    Campground Bathrooms. Photo by Pinedale Online.
    Campground Bathrooms

    Route of Old Lander Trail. Photo by Pinedale Online.
    Route of Old Lander Trail

    Emmigrant Grave along Lander Trail. Photo by Pinedale Online.
    Emmigrant Grave along Lander Trail

    Moderate Fire Danger. Photo by Pinedale Online.
    Moderate Fire Danger

    Horseback. Photo by Pinedale Online.
    Horseback

    Fremont Sign at Two Buttes. Photo by Pinedale Online.
    Fremont Sign at Two Buttes
    Pinedale Online > News > August 2004 > Big Sandy

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