WYOMING (part 1)
Nickname: Equality State
Home of: women’s suffrage, coal mining, geysers and wolves
Famous for: rodeos and ranches
The usual routine of mornings is clearing off overnight snow of Burt and digging our way out of our camp spots. So here we were, brushing and shoveling for the daily exercise then a well deserved breakfast, tea and coffee. After all that we were trying to make our way up north towards I-90, on lovely forest roads, to cross the state border to Wyoming but we kept sticking in snow so more shovelling then turning around to find another route. We stuck 3x and a half an hour journey from our camp, to a little town, called Spearfish, took 3 hours. The mixed feeling of being a little disappointed with our progress + the appeal of a cute little corner cafe in Spearfish convinced us to stay for a couple of cups of luxurious cappuccino. We knew we aren’t going to make a huge progress in the day so we really enjoyed a good hour here chatting to the sweet coffee girl, Aby.
Then eventually we moved on and crossed the border to Wyoming. It was such a fresh breeze of air to see continuous landscape without snow for the first time in our 6 weeks of travel.
Straight away we found a visitor centre by the highway on I-90 and the helpful lady recommended a few good spots staying over night by a big lake in Keyhole State Park. We took a scenic road around Devil’s Tower to reach the lake and saw the most breathtaking sunset. This lovely scenic route turned into a really rough washboard surface farming road -even having cows crossing our way.
At the end of the loop road we arrived to Pine Haven where the couple of recommended camp spots were. It was dark when we rolled in to the town Pine Haven which was a small and pretty town -we supposed to roll-on to the camp but we saw the lights of the small local bar and decided to have a beer before we settle for the night. In the bar there were a few locals and the friendly barmaid who were curious of our vehicle and travel plans. As we were chatting more and more neighbours arrived for their glass or two social drinks. We got into a long, friendly chat with Russ and Stacey who we ended up staying till closing time with, and eventually ended up staying overnight in their woodlands. The following morning they invited us for a morning coffee, more chats and feeding the bunch of wild turkeys that appear at their house every morning between 7-7.30. (along with a deer family) Despite our slight dizziness from the too much beer the night before, we had a ball with Russ and Stacey and the turkeys!
Every fun come to the end so we said goodbye to our kind hosts and left Pine Haven hoping to make it to the Bighorn National Forest before dark. Then within 20 minutes on the road John suddenly stopped the vehicle jumped out and after spending a few long minutes checking the wheels he came back with a white face reporting that we “lost”a wheel. Gulp. Well, 100-200 meters more and we would’ve have.
To be continued…