Now Closed Highway in Wyoming

A couple of weeks ago, I had to make a trip back down to Park City, Utah so I could see my orthopedic doctor to have him check up on my knee progress.  As most of you know who have been following my blog, I tore my MCL this last March while working at Deer Valley Ski Resort and it still hasn’t completely healed.  Since it was a workers compensation injury, I need to make sure to follow up on it.  I still have to make at least one more trip down there again too in a few more weeks.  At least this time, Sal will be able to make the trip with me.  This time, I had to travel alone and it took six hours to drive there! 

I do have to admit that the drive was a very pleasant one though.  I drove south through Grand Teton National Park and then through the town of Jackson, often referred to as Jackson Hole.  Back in the 1800’s a high valley surrounded by mountains was referred to as a “hole” and when an early mountain man, named David Jackson, spent the summer of 1829 along the shores of a lake here in the valley along the Snake River, the area was labeled “Jackson’s Hole.”
48.Moulton.Homestead.Mormon.Row.08.03.10
After leaving Jackson, I traveled into the Bridger-Teton National Forest.  It is the second largest national forest in the lower 48 states and covers 3.4 million acres!!!  It makes up a large part of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem, which at 20 million acres is the largest intact ecosystem in the lower 48 states.  The whole area is incredible!!  Then the road took me along part of the Wyoming Centennial Scenic Byway.  I can easily see how it got that designation!!  It’s a beautiful drive along the Snake River!!!  IMG_3745
I continued further south along Us Hwy 26/89 and went through part of the Wyoming Range and the Salt River Range.  IMG_3737Now this part of the roadway is closed to all traffic after a recent mudslide has covered up about 100 yards of the highway!  There is no estimated opening date!  Unfortunately, the slide is continuing to move at a rate of approximately 1 foot an hour!!  Is that crazy or what??!!!  You can see an AMAZING time-lapse video of the slide at this link.  It’s doubtful that it’s going to be cleared before my next trip to Park City, so we’ll now have to travel more than 100 extra miles one-way.  At least I’ll get to see new things.  Gotta look at the bright side.    Winking smile

Anyway, the Salt River area is very beautiful.  The road takes you down through the middle of a valley, where you are surrounded by mountains above.  IMG_3706
And as you probably already assumed, the Salt River winds back and forth along the side of the road.  IMG_3729IMG_3728
Then the trip took me into Star Valley.  It was settled in the late 1870s by hardy Mormon pioneers and was proclaimed the “Star of All Valleys” for all its natural beauty!!  IMG_3700
Driving through some of the valley on the return trip, I came across this site.  It came as quite the surprise all of sudden!!!!!  Only in Wyoming could you find cowboys herding sheep right along the main highway!!!!!! 
Anyway, there are quite a few very small towns throughout Star Valley.  Afton is actually one of the larger of the small towns, but I was fascinated by this Elkhorn Arch.  I found out it is the World’s Largest!!  It was built in 1957 and spans over Main Street and has over 3000 antlers in it!!!!  IMG_3699
The highway continued south and went through miles and miles of ranchland as I got closer to Utah.  It was extremely beautiful!  IMG_3710
And the scenery got a lot more typical for Utah as I got to Evanston, WY and then into Utah.  By the time I got here, I was glad to know that I was almost to my destination.  IMG_3713As I already wrote in the beginning of this entry.  I still have to make at least one more trip down south in a few more weeks.  I’d be really surprised if they were able to have the mudslide cleared by then.  I guess I’ll have new photos to share after that trip with a new route.  Hope everyone's summer is coming to a great start!!  Happy Trails!

Comments

  1. So what did the doc say? Are you healing up OK?

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  2. Great post Bobbie. We just drove up hwy. 191 today from Jackson, where we stayed last night. We arrived at our new "summer home" here at Lionshead RV Park 7 miles west of W. Yellowstone. We start our jobs tomorrow. The Tetons are awesome!!

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