While most visitors come to Pinedale to check the Wind River Range off the bucket list, Sublette County boasts another lesser known mountain range. The Wyoming Range falls on the western side of Sublette County and is a National Forest with great accessibility. The area is actually 2 mountain ranges. The Wyoming Range lies on the east side of the road, and the Salt River Range on the west. A dirt road splits the ranges and parallels the Greys River which flows north. Wyoming Peak, is the highest peak at 11, 383 feet with several other peaks including Mount Mcdougal.
It slopes are less rugged and rocky than the Winds. The range does have much less surface water than the winds, although there are several small lakes and mountain streams, like Middle Piney Lake.
The closest towns to the range are Big Piney and Marbleton. The range while accessible is isolated.
The range is popular regionally for a variety of recreation pursuits, the most popular are listed below.
Wyoming Range National Recreation Trail
The Range boasts the 70 mile long Wyoming Range National Recreation Trail which begins at the Bryan Flats Trailhead just south of Jackson Hole and terminates at South Piney Creek just west of Big Piney. The condition of the full length of the trail can be spotty. Popular sections that are well used by hunters and day hikers are in the best condition. More isolated sections maybe grown over from lack of use. Given the topography and trail length it lends itself especially well to hikers, mountain bikers, and horsepackers looking for multi-day trips.
Bridger-Teton National Forest, Big Piney, Greys River, and Kemmerer Ranger Districts (2014 USDA)
Visitor Guide to the Wyoming Range, by Susan Marsh (day hike information)
Beyond the Tetons, by Susan Marsh (Wyoming Recreation Trail details)
The entire range is very accessible. The range also lends itself to other modes of travel as it is not a designated Wilderness Area. It is intersected by numerous roads and trails accessed by off-road vehicles. It also boasts some of the only single-track mountain dirt biking in Wyoming.
Maps available here:
The Wyoming Range is also known for it’s outstanding backcountry snowmobiling. A groomed snowmobile trail runs between Horsecreek and Alpine (east-west) and (north-south) down to Big Piney.
I have always thought the backcountry skiing in the range looked absolutely amazing, but *full disclosure* I also was always having so much fun sledding (snowmobiling) I never brought my skis and actually skied, someday soon!
More info and maps here:
The range has an outstanding network of cabins most built by the CCC in the 1930’s these cabins are available for rent during the entire year. It is almost like a built in yurt system, but unfortunately most of the cabins are at least 10 miles in from a plowed road in the winter, and 10-20 miles apart. So they don’t lend themselves well for the average skier. They can however be easily accessed by snowmobile, so if you want to take a snowmobile trip or have a snowmobile supported ski trip it is awesome. During the summer they are accessible by vehicle. It is important to note the cabins are primarily along roads and not the Rec Trail.
Cabins can be reserved via this link:
Energy Development is no stranger to the Southern part of the Wyoming Range. Companies having been drilling near Labarge as far back as the late 1800’s. There are numerous well pads in the southeast foothills of the range between Big Piney and Kemmerer.
The Wyoming Range made headlines several years back, when several energy companies owned leases in the northern part of the range and intended to drill. A major grassroots campaign was launched and the leases were successfully terminated. Thanks to the Citizens for the Wyoming Range.
Hunting is extremely popular in the Range for many species including elk, moose, mule deer, bears, and mountain lion.
General Overview Map (trailheads, lodges, cabins)
Keep checking back for more updates!