Monday, March 12, 2018

Wyoming's Famous Oregon Trail Ruts

It is beginning to warm up and with that time to take a trip. Have you ever seen the world famous Oregon Trail Ruts, in Guernsey, Wyoming? If not, here is a quick look at a site that every history buff needs to visit. 

They are pretty narrow 

For everyone that has not seen the trail ruts, it is worth the trip. The area is very well taken care of by the people from Guernsey State Park, and the site is open year-round.
There are several sets of different types of ruts in the area

There is a short hike up the hill to the ruts area on a winding concrete walkway complete with interruptive signs. Once on top, the ruts started more than 170 years ago are spectacular.
The starting point
Signs along the way

Some people ask, “Why did they go here, over the top instead of down below by the river where it is flat.”
The answer is simple, the flats were often flooded, making the area a soft bog in many places, thus requiring the wagons to find, hard packed safer ground up high.
For visitors - this is the wheelchair path to the ruts.

When I taught western, and Wyoming history students often wondered if all the wagons followed this same track. The answer is no, many, and at some times of the year, most did, but ruts can be found along the trail on both sides of the river. Ruts can also be found across the prairie often several miles from the river.  
Just off the parking lot is a nice picnic shelter and restrooms.

Now that you have seen the ruts take the four minuted drive to Register Cliff and look at the names of pioneers carved in stone. 
Register Cliff - three miles south of Guernsey, Wyoming

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Thursday, December 21, 2017

A Year in Photos

Today I thought that I would post a few photos, from different times of the year, in 2017. I get asked quite a few questions about my photos and tell everyone the same thing - "If you take enough, some are bound to look pretty good."

North Platte River below the Castle during the Silt Run in July

 I snapped a bit more than 12,000 photos last year, in six different states, down from 11 states the year before. 

Long Canyon

But, Nothing beats Guernsey State Park. We spent a lot of time in the park, hiking when we can, and at other times merely enjoying a drive. But, at no time do I visit the park without one of my cameras. This year, so far, I took photos in the park a total of 125 days.
   We also made more than a dozen trips into the Laramie Range to take photos, and five trips to Fort Laramie. Love Wyoming, it can at times, make an old picture taker like me look good.

Main Boat Dock

Parking Lot Near Main Boat Dock

Fish Canyon area

Newell Bay Trail
Brimmer Point Trail
Newell Bay
Red Cliff Trail
Along Skyline Drive

Fish Canyon
Museum Drive

Below Dam
From Long Canyon

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Guernsey State Park - Fall Hiking

The years have slowed us down but not kept us down

It has been a while – too long since I posted on this site. Jan and I continue enjoying the park with one of the longest and most beautiful falls ever. All of today’s photos were taken in the past week on our outings in the park.
Through the rocks on Brimmer Point Trail

We are seeing a few people out and about in the park. Maybe others are finding some of the great walking trails.
Some heavy cross traffic near the park headquarters

Today for the first time we drove to a place to hike and there was a vehicle already parked there – we went somewhere else. I love it when others are enjoying what too often we take for granted.
Nice Mule Deer Buck

It’s a great time to get out and enjoy the park.
Loon on the Lake

In other news, I am getting close to releasing my tenth book. This one is a reflective and humorous look at turning 70, and the process of aging.
 From Our Hike on top of Fish Canyon

Christmas - Now as we get into the Christmas season my book of Christmas stories, released last year, is starting to sell quite a few copies. You can read the first of the 14 Christmas stories here, for free.  The book is available as an eBook or as a Christmas gift soft cover. Enjoy.
View from atop Round Top Mountain behind the Museum

Now get outside and enjoy the Wyoming fresh air, and along with that some great exercise. 
View of the lake and Laramie Peak from near the west boat ramp

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Guernsey State Park - A Hike Along Old Quarry Road

Tomorrow is the first day of fall, once a day of celebration for the bounty of summer gardens and fields. Now it is more of a, “When is the first day of fall anyway?” Let me be the first to wish all of you a happy fall, or should I say, let me be the only one to wish you a happy fall.

As the days cool we are spending more and more time in the park, several good hikes this week. If any of you have never tried a fall walk outside of the city limits, with leaves starting to turn and the smell of Autumn in the air, I highly recommend it.

Two days ago we took an enjoyable hike from Upper Spotted Tail to where it joins Old Quarry Road. We followed this old path back to the old onyx mine.

3122 Co Road Rock along the trail

Always a great walk and, just guessing here, only about a mile and a half, maybe two.  All of today's photos are from that hike.

Get out and enjoy fall, it's not all just about Halloween.

With cold weather approaching it’s time to get exercise and for the days you will stay inside –take a look at my books here – including the one on the building of GuernseyState Park.

Splitting Limestone about 80 Years ago

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Guernsey State Park - Back to Normal

A Touch of Fall in the Park
Looks like the park is back to normal after more than 30,000 people showed up for the four-day Eclipse celebration. It was terrific seeing so many people enjoying the park, but it sure is nice to have it quiet down as we head toward fall.

This is the time of year when Jan and I enjoy hikes and drives in the park. Our activities range from walks of a couple of miles to simply sitting somewhere and enjoying the views.
Taking a Break on Black Canyon Point Trail

I have spent some time the past few days looking at some of the smaller projects the Civilian Conservation Corps finished in the park. I don’t think it is possible to find all of the parks CCC work, but it sure is fun when we find something new.
A small area along Lakeshore Drive - Built by the CCC, Holding Back the Mountainside.

Cooler weather means it is a terrific time to hike or just sit and enjoy the view in Guernsey State Park.

My book on the park is still selling well, both locally and on line. You can pick up an inexpensive eBook copy here or order the soft cover edition and put it in the office, on the coffee table, or make it a gift for someone who loves the park.
CCC Worker Statue at the CCC Museum in Guernsey State Park

If you like reading western fiction, mysteries, gardening books or fun kid’s chapter books take a look at all my books here. That ends my shameless self-promotion of my CCC and the Building of Guernsey State Park book and my eight fiction titles.