The Staycationer's Guide: Driving the wild horse loop

Flaming Gorge Days is cancelled. Mansface Mountain Music Festival is cancelled. Sweetwater County Fair, with the exception of 4-H and FFA events, is also cancelled.

It's understandable that people are wanting to get out of their homes as the summer months start and, also understandably, might be wondering what they can do as almost every major summer event in the county has been cancelled.

We're here to help. There are countless excursions and adventures waiting for people just outside of town. Over the next several weeks, we will highlight some of these outdoor excursions.

Some of Sweetwater County's adventures can be enjoyed in just a few hours. One of these treks is along the Wild Horse Loop Tour. The loop is a 24-mile tour along the top of White Mountain, most easily accessed from Green River through Wild Horse Canyon, past the Hampton Inn.

People undertaking this adventure are treated to some of the most breathtaking scenery Sweetwater County has to offer, some of it not even a mile into the journey. Traveling through Wild Horse Canyon offers an opportunity to view some of the large rock formations the area is known for, with the towering structures visible from either side of the road. Upon climbing to the top of the hill, the scenery changes from rocky terrain to the vast expanses and open vistas of the high-altitude desert. Along the left side of the vehicle, Pilot Butte can almost always be seen throughout the duration of journey, while the right side of the road provides an excellent vantage points to view both Green River and Rock Springs, as well as tremendous portions of the Southwestern Wyoming landscape.

Along the route, interpretive signs inform visitors of local landmarks and the geologic history of the area, shedding light on how Lake Gosuite formed the landscape we call home. The route also provide an excellent opportunity to see the county's flora and fauna, with many species of birds, flowers and plants easily viewable from a vehicle.

Of course, horses are the main feature as the loop gets its name from the herds living throughout the area. They can sometimes be seen feeding close to the road or walking along it.

Photographers can have a field day along the loop tour, especially during the golden hour in the mornings and evenings where softer sunlight highlights landscape. Portions of the area also makes for a great backdrop for DIY photographers planning graduation or family photos in front of Pilot Butte or the landscape.

While much of the route leading to Rock Springs is a mixture of dirt and gravel, the portions near the entrance at 14-Mile Hill are rutted and in need of repair. While a passenger car could navigate the route, drivers are cautioned to slow down and drive carefully to avoid, at very least, jostling the contents of their vehicle.


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