Wyo Lasso

 

From Evanston/Fort Bridger to Utah
Via Wyoming Rte. 414

After you leave Evanston, you get your first taste of some of Wyoming's immense, empty land.  Sometimes it's hard to realize how quickly the mountains disappear, then suddenly re-appear, especially when it seems you can see for a hundred miles.  I took this picture through the windshield, as I dropped down off a plateau filled with wind-generating turbines.

At I-80 exit 34, take the business loop and head through Fort Bridger.  Just past the town, Wyoming Rte. 414 turns south.  At the state line, Wyo 414 turns into Utah Route 43.

The easy route across southern Wyoming would be Interstate 80.  But, it took almost no time for me to get bored of that.  Instead, I had another, much riskier plan laid out.  I hoped to first drive south to Flaming Gorge, then piece together several dirt roads, in order to cut a path across the very southern edge of the state (and occasionally dip into Colorado in the process).  If my plan didn't work, if a road was impassable, or if I simply couldn't find my way, it would mean an extensive detour back to the Interstate.  But not following this path would mean places like Flaming Gorge would be too far out of the way.  So, I decided to give it a try, all the while knowing I might be in for a lot of backtracking.

Route 414 instantly became more interesting than the superslab highway.  It was flat at first, but eventually took me into some badlands...

... and past some rolling fields, with mountains in the distance.  You'll also pass through an area known for the annual "rendezvous" of fur trappers, held from 1825 to 1840 or so.  The "rendezvous" gave the trappers a chance to trade and stock up on supplies, without returning east, and enjoy the consumption of large amounts of whiskey.

By the time you reach the Utah state line, the landscape grows even more interesting.

As you travel up and down over the landscape in this area, you're passing through a number of distinct geological zones.  There are signs to tell you what kinds of rock you're passing.  With facts like, "Graveyard of Jurassic Dinosaurs" and "Home of Fossilized Squid", it's more interesting than you'd expect.

When you reach the tiny town of Manila, Utah, watch for Utah Route 44 to turn left, headed south.  If you stay on Route 43, you'll end up back in Wyoming again, headed up the western side of Flaming Gorge (as opposed to circling around its beautiful southern end).

 
 

Evanston, Wyoming

Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area

 

Wyoming Attractions Map
Research Wyoming Hotels
Free Travel Brochures

 

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Red Canyon, Flaming Gorge Recreation Area, Utah


Evanston, Wyoming & The Drive From Salt Lake City Via I-80


Cart Creek Bridge and Flaming Gorge Dam, Utah


Flaming Gorge - Utah Routes 43 & 44


US 191 - Clay Basin Overlook, Clay Basin Pipeline Road


Baggs, Savery, and Wyoming Route 70

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