Friday, April 25, 2014

A Dam Update

This week’s dam update has little change from two weeks ago. The work is progressing, the lake is full, as full as I have seen it in a few years.

When we went out earlier in the week the boat dock had escaped but by Friday it was back home.

 Looks like the gate work on the dam is complete and most of the work seems to be on the dam road.
So far everyone, I have talked to, who has seen the new high walls on the west side of the road over the dam, think the ecstatic value of the road over the water is lost. But this was a Bureau of Reclamation decision, not a Wyoming State Parks decision. According to the Bureau this is to protect against the millennium flood. Maybe like the new Noah film.
Nice to see the lake full again

Summing up it looks like the road should be open soon – I hope so, love the drive from Guernsey to Hartville on Lakeshore Drive.
Spring is here the big birds are back
 and the wildflowers in the park are spectacular right now.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Easter Sunrise and Sunset in the Park

 We started Easter Sunday with sunrise services at the castle in the park. Seven AM, no wind, temperature in the mid-50s, very special morning.

Twelve hours later we were back in the park and caught one of the most spectacular sunset’s anyone will ever see.

I am sure there are other places with sunsets like this but – WOW.

We were in the park, this evening to do one of my dam construction updates- will post in a couple of days.
Two young deer bid us a good evening as we leave the park.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Deer In The Park - Guernsey State Park

There seems to be a few more deer in the park than the past few years. Not sure why. We decided to count last week and headed to the park at optimum deer counting time, for us, right after supper. 
Out of a bunch of 9 on Mae West Hill

We counted 32 doe on the west side trip and the next evening 17 does on the east side. (I am never sure if more than one makes them does or multiple doe, I used both, thereby assuring myself I got, at least, one correct) Have not seen a buck for a while, but did see a group of 6 two weeks ago. Looks like that adds up to 55. It is nearly impossible to drive through the park in the evening without seeing a substantial number of deer, pretty cool!
Nice Group of 9

 We have not seen much of the turkeys this spring, only a few here and there and not often, hope they all survived.
Trying to Hide, but we can still see you

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Guernsey State Park - Roundtop Mountain

Our most recent park adventure took us on a hike up Roundtop Mountain, the mountain behind the Museum, you know, the one with the kind of round top. 
The Civilian Conservation Corps built the Roundtop Mountain Trail as part of their east side trail system. The trail has long since been forgotten. Jan and I have hiked in the park since 1983, and the trail, to our knowledge, has never been marked during that time. That means it has been lost, at least, three decades. Likely the 1970s since the trail was marked or used, but probably longer than that.

The CCC maps show a circle around the mountain and a pigtail trail up to the top from the main circle. We spent several hours trying to find the old trail and did discover parts of it. 
CCC trail steps northeast of museum

On the south side of the mountain a rock slide appears to have covered a section of 100 feet or more. My guess is the trail was let go at this point of the slide and unmarked and unused since that time. 
The trail ( above the leaning cedar) southwest side of mountain

The road near the top
But two senior adventures like my wife and myself wouldn’t be deterred by a little landslide. Well, yes we were, but we still made it to the top. The old road that starts on the northeast side of the mountain makes a fine trail. It took only about twenty minutes to reach the top using the old road and the hike was invigorating.

Give it a try, this one is fun, not too difficult and the view is spectacular.

The view from the top - worth the hike
One warning – The first one hundred yards are deeply rutted, so step carefully, once you reach the south side of the mountain the trail is fine.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

New Wyoming Licence Plate

Think we could talk the Legislature into this?  All the money goes back to the parks, works nice for the University, and great advertising too. 

New Wyoming License Plate


 Meanwhile, pretty nice Thursday evening sunset at the park.

Sunset - Guernsey State Park, North Bluff Castle

Thursday, April 3, 2014

The Castle at Guernsey State Park

“Rapunzel, Rapunzel, let down your hair.”

 Remember that old Brothers Grimm fairy tale? Well, I wouldn’t either, but my wife loved to read it to our kids when they were little.

So what does that have to do with Guernsey State Park? Well for frequent visitors it is a simple answer. Guernsey State Park just might be the only state park in America with a Castle, The North Bluff Castle.

Built by the Civilian Conservation Corps, it is a one of a kind. The builders must have taken a long time getting it just right, just right for the perfect view. The tower is only 13 feet high but that 13 feet affords a magnificent view.

Don’t want to walk up the stairs? How about these views from inside the picnic area of the shelter, no steps needed.

Looking West - Laramie Peak

Looking North
I cheated - this is upstairs
but my grand kids love this view.


If you haven’t been there for a while, it may be about time to take a trip to the Castle on the North Bluff at Guernsey State park

“Oh Rapunzel!”