My wife and I took a short, three-day trip in the Sportsmobile across the bottom of Wyoming. We left our home in Evanston on the western border of Wyoming and traveled to Cheyenne near the eastern border of Wyoming. Of course we took several side trips along the way. Unfortunately I forgot to take pictures on most of those side trips. However, one of our stops was at the Wyoming Prison in Rawlins. The prison was the second Wyoming territorial prison, replacing the first territorial prison in Laramie (see pictures further down). This prison ceased operations in 1981. The tour of the prison is well worth your time.
One of four cell blocks. The cells actually held two and three people in a very confined space.
The prison originally executed prisoners by hanging. Unfortunately I forgot to take a picture of the unique gallows design. The designer of the gallows believed no one should take another person's life. So he designed the gallows so the prisoner stepped on a trap door that was sprung by water draining slowly into a bucket. When the weight of the bucket became more than the prisoner's weight it sprang the trap door, thus hanging the prisoner without anyone else performing the deed.
In 1935 the prison started executing prisoners by gas. Here is the gas chamber. I had to try it out.
After several more side trips we traveled to Saratoga, Wyoming. This is a very cute town on the western slope of the Snowy Mountain Range. There were deer everywhere. The North Platte river flows through town. The river was overflowing its banks because of the severe spring runoff. There were hundreds of volunteers in town sandbagging the banks of the river. The town park and hot springs were flooded. People thought my SMB was a communications command center. We took our nephew (who lives there) out to dinner at the wonderful Wolf Hotel. Expensive, but great food. Then we headed to Encampment, Wyoming to find a place to camp.
We ended up camping in a private, commercial campground in Riverside, right next to Encampment. The campground was wonderful. We were the only ones there. The trailers in the pictures are there permanently for people who come there often in the summer, but they weren't there when we were. They had very nice restroom and shower facilities. The campground is called Lazy Acres. I highly recommend it.
The Encampment River was also overflowing. This river flows into the North Platte River. Which explains why Saratoga was flooded.
More to come. . .