I want to note for those following my blog that I am posting after my actual time; the date of the posting is not the date I’m a writing about. Sorry if that’s confusing…  the weather and conditions for the area will have changed. I was not able to post at location as I need a new laptop…  will be coming soon, likely another ASUS with a matte screen. I did bring my Sony camera but did not use it, alas. Not enough hands free so all photos taken with my older Note 4 Android phone.

Okay that explained, the rain did come. Not just rain, I love rain, I love water, but with the kind of wind that knocks my little van and wants to tip it over. But it didn’t!  All the modifications I’ve made to my camper have paid off!  It’s very roadworthy and can take a battering.

I headed into Buffalo. I stopped at the information office and picked up a walking tour of the downtown which I enjoyed. I then asked about the weather as I was thinking of taking the scenic road into the windy mountain pass, the reply was, oh, of course, it’s safe it’s a highway after all but she did not at all advise my attempting a few more local sights as floods were eminent. After getting into the The Big Horn National Forest I realized that apparently I was just lucky.   After the fact, if you are headed this way here are current road conditions.

Fast running river water with a nice walking bridge; something we don’t see often in Southern California.

Horses everywhere. Not on the roads but evidence of their importance bejeweled and commemorated all over this part of the country.

“Everywhere you walk in this famous hotel, you will be walking where many famous people of the Old West walked – Butch Cassidy and the Hole-in-the-Wall Gang, Calamity Jane, Buffalo Bill, Tom Horn, the young Teddy Roosevelt… and many more.

And everywhere you look, you will see the Old West the way it really was.

Because the beautiful embossed ceilings you will see over your head in the lobby and in the saloon are the original ceilings. The magnificent back bar that you will see in the saloon is the original back bar that was brought in by wagon a hundred years ago. And the chairs you will sit in are likely to be antiques that are original to the hotel.”

 

I made a loop from Buffalo through the mountains towards Worland to Shoshoni and then to Casper. No particular reason I headed towards Casper except it seemed a good way to go at the time…  or maybe it was the storm chasing me; really didn’t want to get stuck in mud or flooded out at a wilderness campsite. Folks camped out there all had big all wheel drive trucks esp Fords with trailers or 5th wheels.

I start-up into the mountains. All the roads have alarm notices that say if the lights are on then you need to turn around and go back to the last town asap. No alarms today. The further I traveled the less traffic I saw.

There was a crowd here of a handful of vehicles stopped on the road: There were 2 moose cows (only one in this photo); fairly sure they were females as their faces were light colored and of course no antlers. Using my binoculars I could actually read their tracking tags. I saw a little herd of Pronghorn Antelope later but no Big Horn Sheep.

“Moose are the largest in the deer family, and live in cold regions of Europe and North America. They cannot sweat, and their bellies generate heat, so they cannot stay in warmer environments. They are known to be strong swimmers and can reach up to 9.5 kph in the water.” 

Must be covered in wildflowers come summer.

About 9,670 feet. Side roads, lake, hiking, rustic camping, solitude, If you’re staying watch for falling rocks, bring an AWD Truck or SUV unless it’s summer and plenty of water. Don’t expect cell service.

“The Big Horns are a high and wide range that runs north and south. They’re about 30 miles wide and 90 miles long.

On top there are rolling meadows and pine forests. In early summer, lupine and balsa root color meadows purple and yellow. In September, the golden hues of autumn appear.

The range lacks the rugged appeal of the Tetons, the Sawtooths or the Wind Rivers. But what it doesn’t have in rocky peaks and craggy cliffs, it makes up for in broad vistas. From viewpoints looking west, for example, you can gaze across the Big Horn Basin all the way to Yellowstone.

On a clear day you can see almost forever.

By most people’s standards, north/central Wyoming is the middle of nowhere. Unless you’re going from Cody to Sheridan, or vice versa, you won’t stumble on the Big Horns unless you make a point of it.” 

I give a try to a selfie. Yep I do all the driving. See that big yellow rain slicker behind me! I was wearing that and layers of warm things when I ventured out of the van; even then it was biting COLD. Very scenic too.

The dogs and I went for a walkabout at the summit. Mason would not get out of the van. He at first wanted to but one sniff of the frigid cold and nope, he jumped back into his cuddly bed. The altitude and cold didn’t hit me at first, (remember I live at sea level in a very moderate climate,) after walking awhile I too was eager with a pounding heart and crisp edged fingers to get back into the van. My Lagotti…  no problem, they were ready to take off running for the snow. Saw one other car up there, roads were a bit icy, on and off a bit of rain.

Back down on the other side; hot and muggy.


Resting Here. Tons of thunder and lightening!

Videos of the last curves heading down before leaving the mountain. Traffic had reappeared, spectacular (runnable, I think) white water that I was unable to safely stop and photograph.

 

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