From surfing to biking to volunteering, there are lots of ways to enjoy the great outdoors in national forests in Wyoming and some of them may surprise you. We recently filmed a variety of them for a PBS TV show coming out this winter and for a series of videos for our channel on AOL. Check out this rundown on some of the top adventures you can enjoy on your trip.
Stay in Historic Accommodations
If regular old camping is not your thing, look into staying in a historic cabin or fire lookout during your national forest adventures. The Spruce Mountain Fire Lookout Tower in the Medicine Bow-Routt National Forest is just one great place to grab a piece of history and enjoy life off the grid in unique accommodations, but book early, because these places to stay are popular.
Mountain biking is a great way to see Wyoming’s national forests and there are a range of trails to fit even the more novice cyclist. The Cache Creek Trail outside of Jackson Hole in the Bridger-Teton National Forest is a good pick for starting out and travelers can rent bikes from Hoback Sports, among other local vendors.
The wild and scenic Snake River outside of Jackson Hole offers class one to three rapids amid beautiful canyon scenery. Guided trips allow travelers who’ve never rafted before the chance to enjoy this exciting adventure.
Also along the Snake River… surfing. Yes, we’re still in Wyoming and it’s an adrenaline pumping challenge. This one’s not for the inexperienced, but if even if you don’t want to catch a wave, you can still observe surfers at this spot called the Lunch Counter. Consider bringing a picnic.
Take a Hike
From Teton Village trails from Jackson Hole Mountain Resort leading into the Bridger Teton National Forest to hikes in the Southern Medicine Bow National Forest, there are diverse hiking trails in Wyoming national forests. Make sure to bring a map and hire a naturalist guide to learn even more on your adventures amid wildflowers, snowy peaks and beyond.
The Snowy Range Scenic Byway is one of the most popular scenic drives in Wyoming, traversing 29-miles along Hwy 130. You’ll rise up to over 10,000 feet and have many opportunities for great photos along this route.
Wyoming National Forests aren’t all about outdoor adventure. You can take in history, too, at the fun and unique Grand Encampment Museum in the historic mining town of Encampment. This destination grants an intimate look at life in a mining boom town.
Whether you want to spend just one day or several months, there are many opportunities to volunteer on public lands in Wyoming. Trail work, wilderness restoration and other ways to give back will make you feel good about time well spent in nature.
About the author: Darley Newman is the five-time Emmy nominated host and producer of Travels with Darley on PBS and AOL and Equitrekking. She travels the world having active adventures with locals and enjoys filming diverse adventures on our public lands in the USA. Watch for the “Travels with Darley: Wyoming National Forests” starting this winter on PBS stations.