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Laramie - Wyoming

Historic District-Laramie

2nd Street & Ivinson Ave. Historic Laramie - Wickipedia Commons

In May 1868, Laramie was a tent city awaiting the tracks which were to bind the nation together. The tracks were laid through town that month and the dusty encampment quickly became a permanent community of 3,000 people.

Like other western railway towns, Laramie had a few upstanding citizens, a few stockmen who came to town every so often, and a whole lot of rowdies, rustlers, gamblers, thieves and transient riffraff. However, before the year was out, a group of town leaders organized a vigilante posse and chased most of the badmen out of the city. Then most of the rest of the population departed for newer railway towns and Laramie was left with 1,500 residents.

What to See & Do

Today, Laramie is Wyoming's third-largest city, and a university town, with the University of Wyoming being the state's only four-year college. The number of students today (10,000) far surpasses the original population of the early railway town. Most of the university buildings are constructed of Wyoming sandstone. Amateur and professional geologists should visit the university's Geological Museum. Located in the east wing of the Geology Building, the museum shows the geological history of what is now Wyoming over the past two billion years. The museum contains a skeleton of a giant Brontosaurus.

Another historical highlight of the city is Wyoming Territorial Park, at the Snowy Lake exit of Interstate 80. The park includes a museum inside the former Wyoming Territorial Prison (built in 1872). The displays commemorate the fur trading and mountain man era, Laramie's railroad days and the period since statehood. During the summer months, the park stages entertainment and arts and crafts shows.

Day Trips from Laramie

A particularly fine scenic drive leads through the Medicine Bow Range (also called the Snowy Range) southwest of Laramie via Highway 130, with the road re-joining Interstate 80 at Walcott, west of Rawlins. The route first passes Centennial, climbing to Snowy Range Pass, at 10,800 feet. Recreation areas throughout the mountain drive include campgrounds, picnic areas and fishing sites. The road passes several crystal lakes and passes under several 12,000-foot peaks which give the Medicine Bows their nickname, the Snowy Range. The 94-mile loop makes an extremely scenic alternate route if you're westbound from Laramie, or a superb day drive -- returning to Laramie via Interstate 80.

Another scenic route (Highway 210) leads through the Medicine Bow National Forest, east of Laramie, to Curt Gowdy State Park and Cheyenne. To get to Highway 210, drive southeast from Laramie on Interstate 80.

There is a private campground in Laramie, plus several public campgrounds in the national forest to the east.

Where to Eat

The Cowboy Bar and Grill, at 309 South 3rd Street offers dining in a Western atmosphere, with a dining room and cocktail lounge. Nightclub entertainment at night. It re-opened after renovation and renewal in may, 2014.

Another western-style restaurant is the Cavalryman Steakhouse, located 4425 South 3rd Street (via Highway 287, 2 miles south of Interstate 80 and downtown Laramie) on the parade ground of historic Fort Sanders. It features prime rib, seafood and steaks. It's a white tablecloth place. The restaurant has an adjoining cocktail lounge. It began operation in this location in 1970.

Camping

Riverside Campground
Off I-80 at Curtis and McCue Streets. Features tenting and RV camping near the Laramie River. Playground, laundry, store, and full hook-ups for RVs. 27 RV sites, 7 tent sites.

Brooklyn Lake Campground (Forest Service)
This campground is lakeside with great views of Brown's Peak. the caming area has access to the Sheep lake Trail and the Glacier Lakes Trail. To ger there, drive 37 miles west on Highway 130, then 21/2 miles north on Brooklyn Lake Road (National Forest Service road 315). Reserve a site by calling 877-444-6777 or go to www.recreation.gov.

For more information on Laramie and area
go to the home page of
Albany County Tourism

 

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