Living in Natrona County

Wyoming’s plains are the historical home to many nomadic tribes including the Cheyenne, Arapaho, Shoshone and Sioux. Today, about 6,000 Shoshone and Arapaho continue to reside on the 2.3 million acre Wind River Reservation, northwest of Natrona County.

In 1812, John Jacob Astor established Astoria at the mouth of the Columbia and sent Robert Stuart east to start what was hoped to become a network of trading posts. Stuart found South Pass by following a Crow Indian trail and entered our region. Near Bessemer Bend, Stuart and his small band erected the first white man’s hut in 1812. Although Astor’s plans failed when the British captured Astoria in 1812, trappers and scouts continued to explore our high plains and develop transit routes. On July 4, 1824, some of these trappers named Independence Rock.

In 1840, Father Jean Pierre DeSmet began spreading the gospel among area Indians. Father DeSmet was the first to carve his name on Independence Rock and give it the name, “The Register of the Desert.” In 1843, John C. Fremont (known as “The Pathfinder”) chiseled his name on Independence Rock and later with Kit Carson as his guide, went on to explore the country along the Platte and Sweetwater Rivers.

Mar 26

[ARCHIVED] Come Play In Our Backyard! Its pretty amazing!

The original item was published from March 26, 2020 10:21 AM to June 22, 2020 2:17 PM

  • Outdoor Recreation opportunities  for March 26th 
  • We want to encourage everyone to be Covid Aware.
    • Refrain from using parks or trails if they are exhibiting symptoms.
    • Follow CDC’s guidance on personal hygiene prior to and during use of parks or trails.
    • Prepare for limited access to public restrooms or water fountains.
    • While on trails, warn other users of their presence and as they pass, and step aside to let others pass.
    • Follow CDC guidance on the recommended size of social gatherings including outdoor picnicking, pick-up sports and other group hangouts, and maintain proper physical distance at all times.
    • Observe CDC’s minimum recommended social distancing of 6 feet from other individuals at all times. If this is not possible, users should find an alternate location or depart that space.

  • We had a couple of  inches of fresh snow on the mountain last night. So, we were able to groom this morning. All trails were groomed. Please be prepared for Spring time conditions. Some of the areas will be extremely icy and in the afternoon expect some areas to be slushy. 
  • At this time we are only grooming fresh snowfalls, the forecast is for more snow prior to the wk. end.
  • As is our normal operation, the Natrona County Parks Recreation and Leisure Services ends our grooming operation at the end of March. Our staff will begin to transition to getting prepared for Spring and Summer. Starting the first week of April, please be prepared for the lights to off in the maze and we will begin the operation of Snow removal. 
  • Ski Trails will be open to non-motorized  Summer use Starting on March 30th without the need of a trail pass. Hiking, biking, , etc will be allowed. Again, we still want everyone to be Covid aware and remember to social distance. Because of the amount of Snow Fall and due to the fact that Skiing is still available, we are asking that dog owners refrain from using the Ski Areas. As always, we are asking all users to think about the Leave no Trace Principals -
  • The Parks, Recreation, and Leisure Services office is closed to public today and during these times of social distancing. Please feel free to email any concerns. 
  • The Nordic Trail Center is closed for the Season effective immediately. This decision was not made easily. We encourage all of our outdoor enthusiast to use to the grounds to Ski, Snow Shoe, hike, fish,  and enjoy the fresh air. 
  • We have many areas through out the county for people to get out and enjoy during these difficult times. Please contact our offices if you have any questions. 
  • Get out and play in our backyard today!
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Trails and Facility Information

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Questions or Concerns? Please call (307) 235-9325 or email