Thoughts Thoughts

Spring in Wyoming

It has been fun being in Wyoming with somebody that has never been here before. To see it through the eyes of a newcomer.

We arrived on Friday late in the afternoon. As you begin your descent into Wyoming we saw some beautiful, snow-covered mountains. Then the plane does a sharp bank and the Grand Tetons are right there in front of you. That sight has never, even 16 years later, failed to bring tears to my eyes.

Even silly little things that I don’t even notice anymore, like the elk arches as you enter the airport, are exciting to somebody that has never seen them before.

After a quick stop at the town hall to register the expired registration on my pickup truck, we did the obligatory stop at Yippy-I-O Candy Co. I knew I would be cutting it close getting to the town hall before they closed for the weekend, so I called them from the Denver airport to see what their hours were. I got a message machine and left a message. Lorraine asked me if I really expected to be called back. I said I did. Sure enough, about 5 minutes later they did call me back, and they didn’t just call once; I didn’t hear it ring the first time so they called me back again! That, in a million years, wouldn’t happen with the Connecticut DMV.

You couldn’t imagine my surprise when we pulled up to the restaurant I’d made reservations at and across the street the old sheep herder’s wagon that had sat at Puzzleface Ranch forever was now in the front yard of a cowboy antique store. I came so close to buying it on more than one occasion as a guest house for our yard here. It still looked exactly the same, down to the quilt that my friend Melinda had on it when she sold it.

The boys posed in front of the stuffed elk on the square.

and we all went home and crashed into bed. It had been a very long day.

In the morning we went for the mandatory breakfast at Norah’s Fish Creek Inn in Wilson where Evan fueled up on a chili omelette before the journey up to camp for the month. I always seem to run into somebody I know there, and this time was no different, running into our real estate agent. The moose that had so kindly appeared for Lorraine and James the night before as we were heading home for dinner, once again showed his face to send James and Evan off to camp.

Although it was quite cloudy, the drive through Teton National Park on the way to Dubois is still quite stunning with the Tetons so close.

There is one particular spot that, in the peak of the summer, can be covered with hundreds and hundreds of bison. That day there was only a small herd, but it was still exciting for Lorraine and James, who had never seen wild bison before.

But I don’t think anything could have prepared Lorraine, or me for that matter, for the amount of snow that was still up on Togwotee Pass. I think Lorraine, who was already extremely anxious at the thought of dropping her boy off in Wyoming for a month, was just about to have a heart attack.

It was pretty incredible to think that it was June 18th and there was still that much snow on the ground. It wasn’t just in spots up there, it was covered in snow, and lots of it. Even the ponds and lakes up there were still frozen solid.

Thankfully, as we started our decent down the pass the snow turned into patches of snow, and by the time we got to the turn for Teton Valley Ranch Camp there was no snow to be found anywhere but patches still up in the mountains above.
We got the boys checked, made their beds, showed James and Lorraine around and had some lunch. It’s pretty hard to imagine any swimming in Lake LeBotto with the weather they are having right now.

One last photo down at the barn, some hugs and kisses but surprisingly no tears by any of us, and we were off for our journey back to Jackson, leaving our boys for a month of fun and adventure in the wilderness of Wyoming.

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