Last Stop in Wyoming

This will not be our last day out on the road trip, but we are entering the final state in the union. We are excited to be visiting Wyoming, with so much to see and do. For instance, we’re going to Devils Tower, America’s first national monument! We cannot wait to see the sights in Yellowstone National Park — with its geysers, springs. We’ve been looking forward to hiking in the park for quite some time and seeing Old Faithful!

While we’re there, we will visit the Old Faithful Inn. It’s a little expensive to stay the night, but the lobby itself is beautiful, and there are tours of the hotel’s exquisite architecture and its incredible crow’s nest that is otherwise closed to the public. One place we do want to stay the night is the Holiday Lodge Motel. This historic motor inn is praised by visitors for being immaculate and beautifully maintained while also being a kitsch throwback. Its claim to fame is that you can “swim with a shark.” There is an open-mouthed shark painted on the bottom of the heated pool!

When we plan these trips, because it’s a digital journey, it’s always perfect weather in our minds. We would like to visit the town of Buford. It’s all outdoors because the only business, run by the only resident, closed when the man moved away in 2017. The whole town was sold in 2013 to a businessman and renamed “PhinDeli Town” after a brand of Vietnamese coffee. It was sold to a different owner who reverted the name back to Buford. Along with a town sign with a “Population: 1,” there are several great photo ops in town.  We will get a photo of the Tree in the Rock — a tree that appeared to spring from a boulder with no discernible roots. It is a hearty breed of tree that can survive for 1000s of years, and it actually grows through the stone. Then we’ll go over to the ghost town’s other attraction: a 60-foot monument to two disgraced railroad magnates that tried to distract people from their being charged with fraud by erecting a giant pyramid in their own honor! People love the sheer size of it and its quirky history.

We’ll travel from there to Crook County Museum to see the courtroom where the Sundance Kid stood trial. There is also the great statue seen in the banner image, taken by PhotoGraeme and posted on TripAdvisor. The museum is filled with dioramas and more than 7,000 artifacts about the history of the county and about Custer’s Expedition of 1874. After learning about real history, we want to see a fantastic fictional creature: a horse-sized jackalope that we can get a picture on to show we’ve really sat atop the world’s largest! The beast is located in a gas station/country store people love to shop in for souvenirs and snacks. The jackalope exhibit features hundreds of artifacts!

As we leave Crook County, we’ll take a moment to see the Quaal Windsock. Mick and Jean Quaal owned a vintage Beechcraft Twin Bonanza airplane. It fell into brutal disrepair and would have taken $200,000 to get it into the sky as a functional aircraft. It only took a crane and poll to get it into the air as a windsock! The propellers still turn, and the whole plane turns in the wind, showing passersby what way the wind is blowing!

Finally, we’ll pull into Little America, a roadside attraction with billboards for a hundred miles. This location is home to a filling station, dinner, hotel and playground. It’s home to 75 cent ice cream cones, a taxidermized penguin and a green dinosaur! The buildings are all neoclassical, and the dinner serves meals on china and water in crystal ware. Once we have gas and a full stomach, we’re off again.

We aren’t sure where our next road trip is headed. Let us know if you have thoughts or ideas. In the meantime, we’ll be taking a short break at home.
January 17, 2020
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