As you drive Interstate 25 in Wyoming from the town of Chugwater to the town of Glendo, you’re passing through parts of the West you’ve never seen pop up on your Instagram feed. It’s the perfect place to have an unchartered adventure.

Reminders of the Oregon Trail

Ruts from wagons traveling the Oregon Trail west in Platte County, Wyoming

Ruts from wagons traveling the Oregon Trail west almost 100 years ago

Surrounding the town of Guernsey are two can’t miss historical stops. The Oregon Trail Ruts State Historic Site and Register Cliff State Historic Site are two physical reminders of the hundreds of thousands of pioneers that made the journey west on the Oregon Trail in the late 1800s. At the Oregon Trail Ruts site, you’ll see six-foot-deep paths carved by wagon wheels in the sandstone. At Register Cliff, the names of travelers are etched into the rock. Head to nearby Guernsey State Park for a gorgeous hike or mountain bike before continuing on.

Guernsey State Park in Platte County, Wyoming

Guernsey State Park

Make a Splash in Glendo State Park

Disguised by miles of prairie, you could drive right by and not know you were passing incredible spots for water recreation. Glendo State Park, which includes the picturesque Glendo Reservoir, is the perfect place to camp, hike, mountain bike and get out on the water to explore the gorgeous red rock shoreline. Head to Rooch’s Marina where you can rent everything from pontoon boats and stand up paddleboards to innertubes. The marina also has a café serving breakfast, lunch, dinner and beer.

Glendo Reservoir in Platte County, Wyoming

Glendo Reservoir

This park was home to many Native American tribes, including the Arapaho, Cheyenne, Oglala and Brule Sioux. You can still see tipi rings and other cultural artifacts in the park. Remember, take nothing but pictures and leave nothing but footprints – removing artifacts is illegal.

Best Wyoming Grub

Chugwater Soda Fountain in Platte County, Wyoming

Chugwater Soda Fountain

Need a pick-me-up after all that exploring? Head to Windy Peaks Brewery and Steakhouse in Wheatland for local craft beer and mouth-watering appetizers like fried pickles and duck wontons. Happy hour will quickly turn into dinner.

Looking for a place to please the kids? Chugwater is home to Wyoming’s oldest operating soda fountain. Order a hand-dipped ice cream cone, a shake or a malt and get ready for old-fashioned, sugar-induced euphoria.

Visit a Pony Express Stop

Painting of Pony Express rider

It wasn’t easy to establish the Pony Express, the legend of which far outlasted its run of only 19 months [the invention of the telegraph in 1861 replaced it]. Seventy-five horses were needed between Missouri and California, with a fresh horse every 10-15 miles and a new rider every 75-100 miles. On April 3, 1860, the first official mail delivery contained 49 letters. It took 10 days to get across eight states. Get your National Park Service passport stamped at Fort Laramie, one of the Pony Express stops.

Horizontal rule

For more information:
Stop by the Platte County Visitors' Center in Wheatland at I-25, Exit 78.
plattechamber.com

Related

Fremont Canyon near Casper, Wyoming

Happy Trails in Casper, Wyoming

Experience the crossroads of the Wild West, unexpected culture and outdoor paradise in Casper, Wyo.

Aerial view of Park City, Utah

Find Your Trail in Park City, Utah

From mountain biking to al fresco dining to live music, Park City, Utah, has a trail for everyone.

Autumn at Vedauwoo near Lamarie

Laramie, Wyoming's Traveler Trivia

Be a traveler rather than a tourist. Get the behind-the-scenes stories on everything from comic heroes to outlaws in the Laramie area.

Soda Springs Geyser in Idaho High Country

Off the Beaten Path in Southeast Idaho

Near Bear Lake, head north off the interstate to experience the stunning scenery and attractions of southeast Idaho on your way to Yellowstone and Grand Teton.

Hiking Vedauwoo Recreation Area in Wyoming near Cheyenne

Old West meets New West in Cheyenne, Wyo.

Western ranch and rodeo charm meets a vibrant, music and nightlife scene

Flaming Gorge

Southwestern Wyoming - Flaming Gorge, Wild Horses and Sand Dunes

Explore the natural wonders of the Red Desert, the many sand dunes, Wild Horses, Blonde Desert Elk and Flaming Gorge.

Sunrise on Wyoming's Snowy Range Scenic Byway near Laramie

Laramie's Top 6

Lose the crowds in Laramie, Wyoming's great outdoors and its fun cultural attractions.

National Bison Range

13 Stops on the Way from Missoula to Glacier National Park

Pull over at these great sites lining the road from Missoula to Glacier National Park including the best food, where to jump in the water and places to watch wildlife.

Abraham Lincoln, one of 42 bronze statues scattered on street corners throughout Rapid City, S.D.

Closest Airport to Mt. Rushmore is in Rapid City

Fly into the City of Presidents at Rapid City Regional Airport for the most direct route to the Black Hills, Badlands National Park and Mt. Rushmore.