– “Well, you’ll see, Wyoming is a really nice place to live… If you can tolerate the isolation. And the long winters. And the hot summers… And the wind”
– “Oh it gets windy around here?”
– “Hahaha! Did you hear that, dear? He asked if it gets windy around here!! You’ll see…”
As if the words of our first host in the state weren’t warning enough, in the “Climate” section of our Wyoming cycling map, you could read the following: “Winds in Wyoming basin easily blow 40 to 60 mph. What’s worse, conditions can change randomly, so expect it to blow in your face at all time. Expect to whimper and struggle all the way through your ride. It’s gonna hurt”.
OK, it maybe didn’t exactly say that. But that was pretty much the point.
The state motto of Wyoming – forever West – should be corrected.
We had to face it. We needed help. So we joined forces with another group of cross-country cyclists! As a pack of 6 (a.k.a. The 6-pack), we found strength and supported each other through a couple of gruesome days.
Our tracks took us along the paths followed by persecution-fleeing-Mormons, Gold-Rushing-49ers, and Trail-Blazing-Explorers. After all, it’s the only way to go West avoiding the high Rocky mountain passes and finding reliable sources of water & grass for the cattle. But I guess explorers mostly saw the state as somewhere to go through, not to stay. In a state the size of the UK, there are more antelopes than people. With a mere 572,000 people, Wyoming is the least populated state of the country.
Although the journey must have been desolate and rough for the early explorers, we must admit times have made things more enjoyable for us bike travelers. For us, crossing the state was a ride punctuated by strawberry-peach pie & ice cream, otter pops with firemen around a bonfire, and a night in a tipi! And guess what reward awaits when you’re done crossing the Wyoming basin…