Free Fun In "The Cowboy State"

Paying admission fees for a whole family can get pricey, so why not spare your wallet and take the kids on one of these Wyoming outings that won't cost you a pretty penny!

Hobo Pool

Old West Miniature Village and Museum

Have you ever wondered what Wyoming looked like hundreds of years ago, before it became a state? Well now you can see how history changed "The Cowboy State" -- in miniature! The Old West Miniature Village and Museum has dioramas containing thousands of tiny figures depicting Wyoming's greatest moments in history. Apart from the miniatures, the museum contains hundreds of Western and Native American artifacts from the era.

Location: 140 W. Yellowstone Ave., Cody, WY 82414

Rates: Free

Website: tecumsehs.com

 

Hobo Pool

Once a neutral place where Native Americans from tribes would lay down their weapons and partake in the warm, spring-fed waters in peace, the Hobo Pool remains a quiet spot for visitors to relax and reflect. Open 24-hours a day, seven days a week, all-year round, the pool is always free -- however donations toward the maintenance of the facility are greatly appreciated. To really get your blood flowing, you might want to do as Native Americans did and jump from the 110-degree Hobo Pool waters into the nearby icy North Platte River.

Location: 201 S. River St., Saratoga, WY, 82331

Rate: Free

Website: saratoga.govoffice2.com

 

Wyoming State Museum

When you want a comprehensive look at the history and geology of the state nicknamed both "The Cowboy State" and "The Equality State," then it's time to head on over to the Wyoming State Museum. You'll find exhibits exploring the state's beautiful geology, its renowned finds in paleontology (AKA dinosaurs!) and its vast wildlife. History is well represented in the museum, with displays honoring Native Americans, the state's bygone mining days and the major military events in Wyoming's past.

Location: Barrett Building, 2301 Central Ave., Cheyenne, WY 82002

Rate: Free

Website: wyomuseum.org

 

Yellowstone National Park Hikes

Over 98-percent of Yellowstone National Park is rugged terrain inaccessible by roads -- making it perfect for hiking. Take a day-hike to see the geysers and hot springs in the Black Sand Geyser Basin, or the bubbling mud pots and the beautiful turquoise pools that make up the Fountain Pain Pots. Experienced hikers can take on heart-pumping climbs to the 8,564-foot Bunsen Peak summit for breathtaking views.

Location: Yellowstone National Park

Rates: Free

Websites: YellowstonePark.comnps.gov/yell

 

Cowgirls of the West Museum and Emporium

Wyoming may be nicknamed "The Cowboy State," but it sure had its share of cowgirls shaping its history, too! Pay homage to these tough women with a visit to the Cowgirls of the West Museum and Emporium. Exhibits give visitors a taste of the hard life pioneer women faced making their homes in the rugged, unsettled territory. Guests will also learn of the daring female trick riders who courageously entered early rodeos.

Location: 203 & 205 W. 17th St., Cheyenne, Wyoming, 82001

Rates: Free

Website: cowgirlsofthewestmuseum.com

 

Independence Rock

Nothing quite makes our Nation's history come to life like seeing the names of those who made that history, carved into stone by their own hands. That's what you'll find at Independence Rock -- a literal milestone on the wagon trails that are so significant that those who reached it felt compelled to forever preserve their accomplishment by leaving their permanent mark on the mountainside. Go for a one-mile stroll around the rock or brave the climb to the top to witness all the names carved there over 150-years ago.

Location: U.S. Highway 220, MM 63, Casper, WY 82601

Rates: Free

Website: wyoparks.state.wy.us

Hobo Pool image courtesy of Saratoga

Tags: wyoming

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