The range is home to many of the state’s highest mountains including Fremont Peak at 13,745 and Wind River Peak at 13,192 feet. Remember, it is the isolation that in part makes these mountains so magical. +/ -9,500 feet of elevation across the course of this trek with a peak elevation of 11,870 feet.Highlights include steep glacier cut valleys, glacial-fed alpine lakes, impressive granite peaks, and spectacular views. Double Lake, Wind River Range. The Wind River Range is one of the best backpacking + climbing wildernesses in the lower 48. Getting to the trailhead involves driving on the Wind River Reservation and requires a permit. Sinks Canyon Campground (Shoshone National Forest): Located between Bruce’s Parking Lot and Sinks Canyon State Park, this campground and parking area provide access to a network of trails in and beyond Sinks Canyon. Wind River Range This blog is a diary of trips through Wyoming's wilderness. I usually come home slightly battered, legs aching, feet blistered and recover on the couch with a map and guide book planning my next trip. Even if you aren’t a climber, this is worth the trek. There are hundreds of lakes, meadows and peaks to explore and in certain areas you can go days without seeing other travelers. This region offers some of the most amazing and remote backpacking trails for the passionate and fit backpacker. Among the Winds unrelenting height, contain seven of the ten largest glaciers in the Rocky Mountains, … Big Sandy Lake is a fairly mellow six mile hike from the trailhead. You just can't picture the amount of outdoors amusing things the Wind River Range has to offer. The summit is about 15 miles from the trailhead, Tilden said. Photo: Scott Copeland, Hiking in the Wind River Range Photo: Shelli Johnson. You are able to see most of Wyoming’s mammals , 300 different bird species and many types of fish in this large territory. Once you’ve gotten a taste of the Winds, nothing else compares. Cliff Lake is located in the Wind River Range. We visited briefly as a day trip traveling up the normal route. Though it often feels remote, the Wind River Range is visited by more and more people each year- we are loving the area to death. And what’s awesome about those mountains is you don’t have to work very hard for stunning views. Trailhead Start: Elkhart Park Mileage: 17 miles RT Trip Type: Out-and-back Elevation Gain: 2,500 feet over 8.5 miles (9,100 ft to 11,300 ft) Interested in Wind River Range backpacking but not going the distance in the Titcomb Basin? — Finis Mitchell, "Wind River Trails" The Wind River Range is a remote hundred plus mile range, stretching through Wyoming along the crest of the Continental Divide. The Winds are the most popular section of the Bridger Wilderness of western Wyoming. The trail, which starts at the Dickinson Park trailhead provides the ultimate way to experience the vastness of the range. Waterfalls tumble into the river from high cliff walls. In early September I backpacked for 10 days in the Wind River Range in Wyoming.This was my fourth long backpack trip in these fantastic mountains, but this time I did a one-way shuttle trek along the western side of the range through the Bridger Wilderness starting from the Elkhart Park trailhead and ending at Big Sandy to the south. Circle the Continental Divide Driving Tour. Thanks to an open-air vehicle, provided binoculars, and expert narration from your guide, you’re able to get the most out of this wildlife adventure. Site by West Edge Collective. In fact, seven of the 10 largest glaciers in the Lower 48 are found in the Winds. I suddenly felt like I’d dropped into a science fiction movie. 3:19. The Seneca Lake out-and-back trip is a modified version of the Wind River classic. Island Lake, Wind River Range #66377 Purchase In the north central portion of Wyoming’s Wind River Range lies one of the most popular backpacking destinations in the lower 48, Island Lake and Titcomb Basin These areas represent the essence of the Winds, and for good reason. Fiddlers Lake Campground, Shoshone National Forest: There are trails leading into the Popo Agie Wilderness and also south to nearby lakes. The Wind River Range encompasses an area of 2.25 million acres and forms a triple divide for three major western watersheds: the Columbia River, the Colorado River, and the Missouri. In fact, 19 of Wyoming’s 20 highest peaks are in the Wind River Range. For 97 miles, the world-class Wind River High Route follows the alpine crest of Wyoming’s Wind River Range, which ranks among the lower 48’s wildest and most magnificent. They will have all the information on trail conditions and additional trip suggestions. Sep 16, 2013 #1 On August 26th I set out on a 9 day solo trip on the Washakie Pass / Grave Lake / Hailey Pass loop. Please bring multiple wag bags any time you are hiking into the Winds. Deep Lake is a popular option with a developed trail from Big Sandy and big cliff walls. Climbing the Wind River Range Maven co-owner and local climbing veteran Mike Lilygren, ventured into the backcountry of Wyoming to unplug, clear his mind, and to seek new climbing adventures. Worthen Meadows Campground, Shoshone National Forest: This campground on the shores of Worthen Reservoir provides access to the Middle Fork trail and Stough Creek Trails in the Popo Agie Wilderness. › Wind River Range. Trailhead Start: Elkhart Park Mileage: 17 miles RT Trip Type: Out-and-back Elevation Gain: 2,500 feet over 8.5 miles (9,100 ft to 11,300 ft) Interested in Wind River Range backpacking but not going the distance in the Titcomb Basin? Though it often feels remote, the Wind River Range is visited by more and more people each year- we are loving the area to death. If anyone has any comments or suggestions about this page feel free to contact me and I will add updates. Needed somewhere to stop for a picnic lunch and break up a long journey in the car. For information on the western region, the Pinedale Ranger District website is a great resource. Best of all, nowhere else in the world do golden trout grow as big. The Wind River Range is home to thousands of lakes and ponds, with an appealing mix of golden, brook, rainbow, and cutthroat trout. It was my longest and highest altitude backpacking trip to date. Directions from Pinedale: From the intersection of Pine Street (US 191) and North Tyler Ave (the Pinedale Tourism office is located on the northeast corner) in Pinedale, WY, drive south on Highway 191 for 11.7 miles and then turn left (east) on WY-353. Eventually it merges with the Colorado River in Canyonlands National Park, before heading onward through the … But because the Bridger Wilderness … Continue reading "Backpacking the Wind River Range of Wyoming" Eventually it merges with the Colorado River in Canyonlands National Park, before heading … Take the Sheep Bridge Trail across the bridge and up the Middle Fork. (This is not the case for the Cirque of the Towers described above. Lonesome Lake, in the Cirque of the towers, has been declared unfit to drink from, even when filtered or treated because of fecal contamination. The Wind River’s Gannett Peak at 13,804 feet takes the title. Both access the Silas and Christina Lake trails. At left is Gannett Peak, Wyoming's highest mountain at 13,804 feet. In early September of this year, I spent a week backpacking 80 miles through the Wind River Range in the Bridger Wilderness of Wyoming with my husband Max. The range is also home to some of North America’s largest glaciers. We were on a tight schedule – we had to make it back to Lander by 7pm to watch our middle son’s baseball championship game.) The river drops north out of the Wind River range, then turns south and winds its way through Wyoming and Utah, traversing some of the finest canyons in the world. It would take a lifetime to fully explore the Winds, but that’s a challenge I wouldn’t mind taking on. If using the Jackson Hole Airport, it is recommend that you fly in the day before the trip starts to provide contingency for cancelled flights and delayed baggage. But because the Bridger Wilderness … Continue reading "Backpacking the Wind River Range of Wyoming" It is best completed as an end-to-end thru-hike, but its eight recommended section-hikes are more approachable and convenient. Trailhead Driving Directions. The Wind River Range offers world renowned fly fishing, and the area’s 1,300 alpine lakes means any trail should offer multiple opportunities to cast your line. Hiking deep into the Wind River Mountains is a bit like backcountry skiing where you have to earn your turns. As for the view from the summit: “It’s like ‘wow, there’s a lot of rock out there,’” Tilden said. Elevation & Weather The trails of the Winds are at higher elevation than other mountain ranges in the West, … To cross tribal lands on your drive to Dickinson Park, you and everyone in your party must purchase tribal fishing licenses. This rugged piece of the Rocky Mountains, extending for approximately 80 miles along the western slope of the Continental Divide, contains a unique combination of jagged granite rock, alpine forest, and open alpine meadows. The Wind River Range is grossly underfunded for trail maintenance. it's really far to the trailhead, and some are still so busy. A boulder field near Gannett Peak, in the Wind River Range.Photograph by Carl Oksanen/Alpen Glow Images. Hone in on one section and explore it thoroughly. The next approximately four miles are a grunt, but well worth the views when you see the cirque. It didn’t quite turn out like we had anticipated. Many people mistakenly think the Grand Teton is Wyoming’s highest peak. P.O. There’s camping in the Cirque of the Towers, amazing climbing and inspiring scenery. Geology: The Winds are composed primarily of a granitic rock formed deep under the surface of the Earth, 1,000,000 years ago. You just can't picture the amount of outdoors amusing things the Wind River Range has to offer. Elevation & Weather The trails of the Winds are at higher elevation than other mountain ranges in the West, … Deep Lake is a popular option with a developed trail from Big Sandy and big cliff walls. Cliff Lake is a tremendous location to visit for more than one day, Shoshone Lake Access is a tremendous location to camp nearby. Wind River Peak provides a peak-bagging experience with no technical climbing experience required, although you will need to do a little boulder hopping. 5-15 mile a day trails provide various camping options along the trail, while taking trekkers into some of the most beautiful and remote Rocky Mountain countryside on. Monday, August 07, 2006. Early August Backpack to Middle Fork Lake, Wind River Range - Duration: 3:19. All rights reserved. Spending extra days in the Cirque to climb some of the classics like Pingora is also common. The Big Sandy Trailhead is located in the southern Wind River Range next to the Big Sandy River. The trail to the lake, if done in one day, is long and tiring with lots of ups and downs. It is the granite that entices so many climbers to the area, and also gives the range its rugged feel. In fact, 19 of Wyoming’s 20 highest peaks are in the Wind River Range and there are more than 40-named peaks rising above 13,000 feet. The ice ages beginning 500,000 years ago began carving the rocks. “Talk about feeling on top of the world and a little exposed.” — Emily Tilden, Lander resident. It’s not. He is a former resident of both Dubois and Lander, Wyoming and a former NOLS instructor. Dickinson Creek Campground, Shoshone National Forest: There are several trails that lead into the Popo Agie Wilderness and to many mountain lakes, the largest being Shoshone Lake. To create a loop, you’ll just want to follow the Lakeside Trail back to the trailhead. Is this a must-do if you are traveling with a, Is this a place or activity you would suggest for, Would you recommend this place or activity to a friend looking for an, Is this a romantic place or activity that you would suggest for, Are the prices for this place or activity, Is this a place or activity you would go to on a. Each side has only a handful of access points, towns with amenities and major trailheads. The Cirque of the Towers is a climber’s dream and perhaps the range’s most famous hike. They are a mountain range that burrows into your soul and lures you back with promises of endless exploration and adventure. Cliff Lake is located in the Wind River Range. Read Joe Kelsey's Climbing and Hiking in the Wind River Mountains, a guidebook. So glad we took the detour up to the Wind River Range. I love a good peak. Wyoming’s Wind River Range has mountain peaks, glaciers, stunning views, and very few people. Island Lake Backpack in the Wind River Range, Wyoming - This very popular backpack leads to Island Lake (10,346-ft.), a stunning destination with great day hiking, good fishing and scenic campsites. The Christina Lake Trailhead is nearby. This mountain range is pretty amazing. Falcon Publishing. You know it’s a great place because the Native American lived there temporarily. Don’t get me wrong, the Tetons are incredible. Wonderful fall colors when we visited. Elkhart Park - Lester Pass Loop, Wind River Range - Duration: 10:36. Along with 3 buddies we decided to backpack up to Clear Lake which lies above Lower Green River Lake in the Wind River Range of Wyoming. If you have a little more oomph, start up Jackass Pass. I have these idiot backpacking … Wyoming’s Wind River Range has mountain peaks, glaciers, stunning views, and very few people. There are designated campsites at the lake if you want to settle in for the evening. The range is home to many of the state’s highest mountains including Fremont Peak at 13,745 and Wind River Peak at 13,192 feet. There are plenty of places in these mountains where cell phones don’t work and you won’t necessarily run across other people. often covered in smoke throughout the summers now. In early September of this year, I spent a week backpacking 80 miles through the Wind River Range in the Bridger Wilderness of Wyoming with my husband Max. If you are a resident of another country or region, please select the appropriate version of Tripadvisor for your country or region in the drop-down menu. The views were breathtaking and so was I. I've hiked a lot today and I was totally exhausted. Wyoming's record golden trout, which is also the current world record (an 11-pounder measuring 28 inches), was caught at Cook Lake in 1948. It’s not. Wind River Range, Wyoming | 2006 Evening twilight light along the Wind River continental divide above Scott Lake - July. For those who are really ambitious and want a long day hike, Valentine Lake is 12 miles from the trailhead (with plenty of elevation gain). Trip Overview: The 45 mile Cirque of the Towers backpacking loop goes through the spectacular and popular Wind River Range of the Pop Agie and Bridger Wilderness areas of Wyoming. But if you are flexible, most trips have redeeming qualities … There’s something so satisfying about standing on the summit and taking in the view. This is the version of our website addressed to speakers of English in the United States. We started hiking at 3:30am, and hiked 16 miles to the top of Wind River Peak, the tallest peak in the southern Wind River Range, only to turn around and return. Be prepared. From Lander, plan about two hours to get to the trailhead. The Seneca Lake out-and-back trip is a modified version of the Wind River classic. Game and Fish helicopter-stocks Upper Tayo, Lower Tayo, and Upper Deep Creek lakes with … He has been rock climbing for over 30 years, and his exploits have taken him all over the U.S. and the world exploring new summits and new challenges. A decent portion of the text was written my member "Jimmyjay" and I would like to credit and thank him for all the work he put into this page. Tom M 672 views. That trail also continues deep into the Wind River Mountains, including Twin Lakes, Hudson Meadow, and Stough Creek. ©2020 Wind River Visitors Council. They are one of the rare places where you can still truly and fully experience the wildness of mountains. This should tell one that there are lakes and places to hike. This is a perfect hike for the family following a well-marked trail starting near Fiddler’s Lake at the Christina Lake Trailhead, which you reach by following the paved switch-backed road at the end of sinks Canyon. As the land continued to rise during the Laramide orogeny, further erosion occurred until all that remained were the granitic.. He has spent a lot of time hiking in the Wind River Range and knows the area quite well. Currently, 500 miles of trail is what the budget allows for maintenance. My friend Kai and I originally intended to climb Gannett Peak (13, 809′) in Wyoming’s Wind River Range over a five day period. Cliff Lake is a tremendous location to visit for more than one day, Shoshone Lake Access is a tremendous location to camp nearby. I chose the right side which rose sharply along cliffs above the lake. Best trails in Wind River Range, Wyoming. Results show that the Tayo and Deep creek-drainage lakes near Wind River Peak currently offer some of the best golden trout fishing opportunities within the Wind River Mountains. To get deep into the Winds is hard work, but the payoff is incredible. “HIGHER, LONGER, DEEPER: WYOMING'S LARGEST RANGE”. There is good camping near the Deep Creek Lakes. For more information check in with local outdoor shops. Aside from the astounding beauty, the size of the range- 2.25 million acres stretching 110 miles- allows for a true wilderness experience. Really watch the weather, too. (Add 1 hour to scramble to Upper Cathedral or Mendarrin lakes) Please bring multiple wag bags any time you are hiking into the Winds. The green of the grass seemed saturated and popped against the rising peaks of granite. Follow along to the Pinto Lake Trail and take the Deep Creek Cutoff trail and then the Ice Lakes trail for the last half mile. This trail not only provides stunning views, but also options for a long day hike, depending on your fitness levels, or a great backpacking option. This, I want to emphasize, will be a tough day for even the fit. Observe world-famous wildlife in Grand Teton National Park on a half-day safari tour. This trail starts at the Worthen Meadows Trail Head. Wind River Visitors Council In fact, 19 of Wyoming’s 20 highest peaks are in the Wind River Range and there are more than 40-named peaks rising above 13,000 feet. Along with 3 buddies we decided to backpack up to Clear Lake which lies above Lower Green River Lake in the Wind River Range of Wyoming. It’s about three miles to Upper Silas Lake and if that’s too far, rest and snack at Lower Silas Lake, which you pass on your way. more, Top Selling Tours & Activities in and around Wyoming. Trip Overview: The 45 mile Cirque of the Towers backpacking loop goes through the spectacular and popular Wind River Range of the Pop Agie and Bridger Wilderness areas of Wyoming. Box 925 Bruce’s Picnic Site, Sinks Canyon/Shoshone National Forest: The Middle Fork trail to the Popo Agie Falls begins here. Grand Targhee Ski Shuttle from Jackson Hole. Wind River Peak is an easier non-technical peak that still gets you above 13,000-feet. The area draws climbers for the multitude of routes on the granite towers that make up the cirque. Salt Lake City is generally a much more reliable and cheaper option. Lander, WY 82520. The Wind River Range offers world renowned fly fishing, and the area’s 1,300 alpine lakes means any trail should offer multiple opportunities to cast your line. Many people mistakenly think the Grand Teton is Wyoming’s highest peak. Because this was a wilderness trip, no camping permits were required. Keywords: Wind River Range, the Trail to Titcomb Basin, Wyoming, pools, ponds, water, reflections, granite cliffs, panoramas License/purchase this photograph. The Wind River Range encompasses an area of 2.25 million acres and forms a triple divide for three major western watersheds: the Columbia River, the Colorado River, and the Missouri. Because this was a wilderness trip, no camping permits were required. It’s a large grassy ramp sweeping uphill. Seven of the largest glaciers in the Rocky Mountains are found here, including the single largest glacier in the American Rockies. It’s their accessibility that has overshadowed the Wind River Mountains, but that’s OK. It’s left the mountains rugged and in many places quiet. the mountains are nice though. Green mosses and plants cloak the rocky canyon walls, rounding out the spectacularly colorful views seen throughout the Wind River gorge. Explore the most popular trails in Wind River Range with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you. Joined Aug 2, 2012 Messages 15. These villages were established by the Sheepeater band of Shoshone during pine nut harvesting season. Over hundreds of millions of years, rocks that were once covering this granite eroded away. Cliffs of Grave Lake Image069 Originally uploaded by Brambor. The Wind River Range (or "Winds" for short), is a mountain range of the Rocky Mountains in western Wyoming in the United States.The range runs roughly NW–SE for approximately 100 mi (160 km). The Wind River’s Gannett Peak at 13,804 feet takes the title. He’s backpacked all over the world, but if pressed to name his top three favorite spots, the Wind River Mountains makes the list, he told me. It is the granite Towers that make up the Middle Fork trail to trailhead... 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