An important thing to know about Wyoming is that it is bigger than it looks. I say this because at the beginning of our trip, as we leafed through our road atlas, I didn’t properly internalize the driving distances of the western states. Sure, I knew fully well that the west is expansive, but I did not realize how deceptive our road atlas could be. When we got to Wyoming, and I turned to the W’s, it hit me that one inch on the map was now going to be worth 70 miles, instead of the 40 we had grown accustomed to. This is a pretty significant change, especially after close to a month of intensive car time already under our belts. In an instant, driving across the page was going take close to twice the time it once had.
This is one of several contributing factors to our lengthy stay here in the state of Wyoming. After spending that extra night and day in Casper, we struck out to reach Thermopolis, home to the world’s largest natural mineral hot spring. We left late however, so decided to camp a few miles shy of our destination. We spent the night in Boysen State Park, in a sandy camp group on the edge of another giant reservoir. Though the campsite was nothing memorable, we were in luck artistically. With a giant moon rising to our east and a lively electrical storm to our west beyond the water, we were in the perfect setting to work on some nighttime photography.
After a late dinner, we stayed up until the approaching rain was upon us, photographing the lightning and approaching storm (see some shots over in Still Life).
The next morning, we left as early as possible, arriving in Thermopolis around breakfast time, eating at a diner (where I temporarily lost my purse, whoops!) before heading into the state park.
There are a variety of ways to enjoy the hot springs in Thermopolis and we opted for the public one, which was free. We were allowed 20 minutes of soaking time in an outside pool, which was the perfect amount of heat to prepare us for some yoga and relaxing in the grass outside the baths. After a pleasant hour of stretching, I remembered my lost bag in the restaurant. We rushed back to get it and then decided to delay no further and finish the journey over to Jackson, on the western edge of the state.
After a longer than expected drive due to construction in the mountains (Obama’s stimulus package had meant road work across the entire nation) we arrived in Jackson, the Grand Tetons looming magnificently to our west. Adam has a friend from high school here in town so we paid him a visit at work (Andy works at the acclaimed Fitzgerald’s Bike Shop) and then headed straight to an evening farmer’s market. There we were able to shoot another interview and learned a bit about high altitude farming from a couple who grow out of Victor, Idaho right across the border.
Afterwards, we drove back over to Fitzy’s to meet Andy and then headed to his home for a BBQ. He is living in his friend’s half-built future home on the east side of town and welcomed us to stay for a few days. His co-worker Tim sweetened the deal by suggesting we sleep in his little truck-bed trailer, which was parked outside the house. That was Wednesday and this is Sunday, meaning we have spent more time in Wyoming than any other state on our trip. There is just so much to enjoy here and we have taken a well-deserved break from driving the Subaru.
Stay tuned for news and pictures from our hike in the Grand Tetons, some Figure Eight Racing at the County Fair, and more.