Wagonteamster Book Order Click Here

Available Now!

Wangoteamster Cover_edited-2

The Wagonteamster Channel has it’s first video production - Journey To the Valley Of the Wild Horses


6-17-09 004_edited-1-2
The 19th State


5/27/12, ‘Little’ Mountain, Wyoming - After four years of travel and 6500 miles, the lads and I have entered our 19th State.  Before Trip #4 is over, we’ll trek through an additional 6 new States, bringing the total to 25.

I was thinking of naming this blog “Arduous Travel”, as it was tough day, especially for the horses.

joyce head

Please Sign my Guestbook

Please Read my Guestbook

5-27-12 009

“Phew”, said B.O.B., “at least they ain’t got any of them durn lizards in this State.  But I think the sign gives me permission to pitch off the ‘Ol Teamster if he was foolish enough to jump on my back!”

The first of the three days needed to trek across the empty land between Flaming Gorge and Rock Springs was a tough one.  There were a lot of uphills and downhills, but we still gained about 2000 feet in elevation. 

For the morning trek, I had Doc paired with Bob, so I could keep Bill fresh for the afternoon travel, when I knew I would need him.  The first ten miles of the day were up and down, with only a few hundred feet in elevation gain. By lunch we were 2 miles inside Wyoming, with the big hill just in front of us.

5-27-12 001

Just before hitching up this morning, I had a very nice visitor that brought me a little goodie bag.  It was a nice way to start the day.

Much of the morning travel was through an old forest burn on the East side of the Flaming Gorge Reservoir. It appeared to be about ten years old and must have been pretty devastating. I would guess that at least 50,000 acres of Pinion/Juniper forest burnt up in the blaze.

All morning long I had a great view of the reservoir, below and to my left,  Flaming Gorge is actually far larger than what I could see. From Utah, the lake extends about 40 or 50 miles north, into Wyoming.

5-27-12 002

About 3 miles before leaving Utah, the road seems to disappear; but, takes a sharp right and travels through a large notch.

Doc was up to his old game of trying to pull the wagon by himself. I ran Bob with a shorter heal chain and stayed on his butt to keep him pulling.

The morning weather was great by deteriorated quickly. By the time we made the notch, we traveled through the first of several snow squalls for the day.  From a morning temperature in the 60’s, it got colder as the day wore on. By 11 am, I was starting to get chilly has the temperature fell into the high 30’s.

5-27-12 006

A red cliff and the lake are in sunshine, while the foreground in cast in shade from the clouds.

At the State Line, I chatted with a rancher who owns a ranch just inside Wyoming (one of two that exists on this road, between Flaming Gorge and I-80).

A couple of miles further down the road, I pulled over for lunch.  Much of my lunch hour was given up to care for the horses and to swap harness around so I could pull with all three after lunch.

5-27-12 007

Some of the interesting terrain after lunch. According to the sign, these were ancient sand dunes in the pre-dinosaur days.

Most of the afternoon was an uphill climb. The steepest two mile section was right before we quit, when the lads pulled the wagon up a 8 to 10 degree pitch for two miles. Just before we started up this hill a group of young ladies and a young man had to stop and get their pictures taken with the lads.  One of the young ladies was a little surprised when Bob placed his head on her shoulder and gave her a little kiss.  You got to watch out for Old B,O,B!

5-27-12 010

B.O.B. says, “Wow civilization, right out here in the middle of nowhere!”

At the top of the hill, I had another surprise.  There was another cattle guard placed across the highway. I was just about to break out my go-around gate construction tool, when I spied one up the fence line a few hundred feet.  This one had the added feature of having a 1/4 mile long guardrail built almost to the cattle guard, only leaving 3 feet of space between it and the cattle guard to walk an animal around.

The cattle guard was on an uphill slant, so I had to use Doc to pull the wagon across. This required quite a juggling act with wagon brakes, chocks, horses, chains and wagon.  I kept the red and blue lights on the wagon while all this was going on.  Several people stopped their car and wouldn’t come forward until I waved the around.  When the Amish Police have someone pulled over, folks are careful!

5-27-12 011

This picture shows the tip of the wagon tongue, the cattle guard and my strap and chain laying across it; waiting for Old Doc to do his thing.

Continuing on from the cattle guard, I pulled Doc off the hitch and drove the two Belgians.  About a mile down the road, I found a spot that would pass for a camping place. It’s in the lee of a hill, so the wind is only blowing 20 to 30 mph, not the 30 to 40 is was blowing farther back on the hill.

5-27-12 012
5-27-12 013

This is a partial view from my camping spot. If it wasn’t so cold outside, I would sit outside and enjoy. As it is, I’m spending most of the evening inside, with the heater set to High. I’m at 8000 ft on the side of ‘Little’ Mountain. At this altitude, I expected to find a spruce/aspen forest.  What I found instead was a mountain covered in sagebrush (and very windy).

We covered 19 miles today, but it was pretty grueling travel (mostly uphill).  Most of tomorrow is up and down, but with more gradually sloped hills. I’m going to start the day with the Belgians hitched up while Doc gets a little rest.

Internet coverage here is real poor, so hopefully I’ll get this posted tonight!