Best Winter Destinations in Wyoming for Explorers
Wyoming has a lot to offer in the way of winter activities, whether it's steep slopes, vast powder-filled meadows, or a lodge with a cozy fire. Snowmobilers, downhill and cross-country skiers, and fat-tire bikers flock to Wyoming's unspoiled terrain, which includes the Bighorn Mountains, Wind River Country, the Snowy Range and so many other places in between. After a long day of skiing or snowboarding, enjoy a sleigh ride, take in some history or relax at a hot spring and unwind.
Wyoming is a true winter paradise because of the thick blankets of snow, the seemingly endless amount of territory to explore and the state's irresistible sense of adventure. There's something for everyone here, from the casual explorer to the seasoned thrill seeker, thanks to the wide range of activities available. Looking for the perfect winter exploration getaway? Here are a few suggestions in our Wyoming member’s service territories.
Basin, WY, served by Big Horn Rural Electric Company
Basin, Wyoming is located in Big Horn County and offers many sites of historical and natural interest, including the Bighorn National Forest and Cloud Peak Wilderness, Pryor Mountain Wild Horse Refuge, Medicine Lodge Archaeological Site, Greybull Museum, Red Gulch Dinosaur Track Site, Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area, Shell Falls, Paintrock and the ancient Medicine Wheel.
Outdoor enthusiasts will find a wealth of snow hikes, xc skiing, snowshoeing, snowmobiling and gorgeous outdoor scenery in Big Horn County. Along the way, they’ll find camping spots at the Ten Sleep Rock Ranch, Shell campground, and several other spots up the national forest. Ice fishing whenever, but especially at the Ice Fishing Derby in Meeteetse. Ice skating at the Medicine Lodge in Hyattville. Skiing up at Meadowlark Ski Lodge, located in the southern Big Horn Mountains, and Antelope Butte Ski Area, located in the northern Big Horn Mountains. On top of that, they will get to see gorgeous outdoor scenery in Big Horn County.
Saratoga, WY, served by Carbon Power & Light Inc.
Settled in the late 1800s, the Town of Saratoga has been a destination with a vibrant history of western culture, inviting one and all who seek the beauty of the outdoors, the arts, snow sports and a small, hometown atmosphere. For anglers, there is no better destination than Saratoga, also known as the place “Where the Trout Leap in Main Street.”
The magnificent Snowy Range and Sierra Madre Mountains attract numerous outdoor enthusiasts with winter activities from snowmobiling, skijoring racing, downhill skiing, snowshoeing and the world-renowned Ice Fishing Derby at Saratoga Lake.
For those who prefer a warmer winter getaway, or a little respite after a long day of skiing, Saratoga offers two hot springs: The Saratoga Resort & Spa for an upscale experience or the Hobo Hot Pool for the more budget-friendly traveler.
Pine Bluffs, WY, served by High West Energy Inc.
Texas Trail Museum
For those seeking a little western history, head east 41 miles from Cheyenne to the 4 ½ acres Texas Trail Museum located in Pine Bluffs, WY. Pine Bluffs became known as the "Frontier Crossroads" due to it being the area where the cattle trails crisscrossed. Before the cowboys and cattle arrived, the area was home to numerous American Indian tribes.
The museum houses a fine collection of artifacts depicting the history of southeastern Laramie County. The main exhibition hall has a gift shop, prehistoric artifacts and displays reflecting the town history of Pine Bluffs, Albin, Burns and Carpenter.
Other buildings include the oldest schoolhouse in Laramie County, a decommissioned Catholic church, the Walker Boarding House, a Union Pacific Caboose with railroad memorabilia, the Bowser homestead house and the Agriculture and Transportation building.
Pine Bluffs Distilling
Come in from the cold and warm up with some local spirits. Pine Bluffs, Wyoming is home to Laramie County's first permitted distillery. The distillery is family-run, and all of the grains are produced and malted on-site. Distilled and bottled spirits, as well as a range of cocktails, can be sampled in the tasting area. During open hours, free tours are provided.
Riverton, WY, served by High Plains Power Inc.
Riverton, located in Wind River Country, lies along the ”Yellowstone Highway” and is a favorite stopover for visitors to Yellowstone and Jackson Hole. For early western history buffs, the Riverton Museum and Wind River Heritage Museum offer a look into the life of American Indians and fur trappers of the 1800s. Take a detour and discover Wyoming’s Wind River Country trails by foot or by fat bike tour.
When the weather gets cold enough, don’t forget Riverton’s “Tonkinfeller Plaza,” Riverton’s Community Ice Rink at Tonkin Stadium that opens to the public.
The National Bighorn Sheep Center in Dubois, WY
The National Bighorn Sheep Center is near one of the country's largest herds of wild sheep. The exhibit delves into the lives of these uncommon and interesting creatures, as well as the environment in which they live. Learn about their high-altitude world and behaviors, including why they butt heads, how they ascend precipitous cliffs, and more. Self-guided and guided tours, special events, and a fantastic gift store are all available. www.bighorn.org
National Museum of Military Vehicles
The National Museum of Military Vehicles, located southeast of Dubois, Wyoming, is a world-class military history museum that opened in August 2020. Nearly 475 fully restored military vehicles, artillery pieces, naval vessels, and aircraft from 1897 to the present may be found inside the 140,000 square foot museum, with a current focus on the American experience in World War I, World War II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War.
The museum's main goal is to recount the tales of how these vehicles were employed, as well as to honor the bravery of the service members who fought and died in them. A vast, historically significant guns collection is also housed at the museum. www.nmmv.org
Brooks Lake Lodge
Brooks Lake Lodge is a high-end guest ranch on the Continental Divide that was built in 1922 providing lodge rooms, private cabins, and gourmet cuisine to its guests.
While you’re there, The Continental Divide Dogsled Company offers dogsledding tours at an additional cost for lodge guests. If dogsledding isn’t your thing, there are plenty of breathtaking trails to be explored by horseback.
For winter snowmobile enthusiasts, the Brooks Lake area is known for having some of the best continental divide snowmobiling in the Rocky Mountains.
It doesn't matter if you're a history buff, an archeology enthusiast, snowboarder, skier, ice fisherman or just looking for some good old-fashioned family fun. Wyoming is the perfect winter destination.
Tri-State is a not-for-profit cooperative of 45 members, including 42 member utility electric distribution cooperatives and public power districts in four states, that together deliver reliable, affordable, and responsible power to more than a million electricity consumers across nearly 200,000 square miles of the West.