Hope you all had a wonderful Fourth of July weekend! I spent mine in Wyoming with James and his family in their cabin nestled in the Bighorn Mountains. I’m not sure how else to put this, but it’s kind of in the middle of nowhere, and that’s what makes it so special! It felt so good to be able to escape from everything and enjoy nature without the constant distractions of texts, Internet, and TV.
I flew directly into Denver where James picked me up and together we headed up north to Wyoming. The drive to the cabin was just so beautiful and peaceful.
There are lakes, valleys, streams, and cattle ranches, with evergreen forests and lush meadows scattered throughout – the area looks like a scene from a storybook.
Each day we woke up, enjoyed delicious meals , and spent our day alternating between doing something active in the outdoors and relaxing. By the way, we made a Bacon Bolognese sauce adapted from Jamie Oliver which I will be sharing with you soon.
And no summer vacation is complete without ice cream, of course, so we made this Butter Pecan Ice Cream which turned out perfectly. We used half and half instead of light cream and it turned out even more creamy.
We hiked up the Twin Buttes through mountain meadows covered in colorful wildflowers (lots of dandelion, sticky geranium, Indian paintbrush, and a type of wildflower called larkspur which is poisonous to cattle) and fragrant sage brushes.
The view was spectacular from above.
We also did some fly fishing along the Tongue River, and I caught my first rainbow trout within five minutes of James giving me a crash course on the basics! Then I quickly received a lesson on reeling in my catch :)
I even gutted and cleaned my trout.
And of course, we cooked the two trouts I caught in cornmeal coating and pan fried till crispy in a cast iron skillet. It’s so delicious!
The next day, we went further along the river for some more catch-and-release fishing and James caught FOUR trouts while I didn’t catch anything. I attribute my catch on the first day to beginner’s luck ;)
James and I even attempted to start a fire with the bow drill we spent hours making. Watched too much Naked and Afraid? Yeeeap, that’s us :p
If you’re an outdoors enthusiast, Wyoming is the place to be! There are so many opportunities for hiking and backpacking, fishing, camping, horseback riding, and rock climbing (we saw people bringing their own crash pad to do some bouldering). Our time in the cabin was cut short by a day due to an impending thunderstorm, but we no doubt enjoyed our time spent back in Sheridan. Here are some of the highlights:
King’s Saddlery and Museum — this store has everything a cowboy or cowgirl needs like saddles, ropes, reins. There is a museum in the building behind the store with a great collection of antique saddles, carriages, clothing, and many other western memorabilia.
Blacktooth Brewing Company — we had a great time here and enjoyed their delicious beers. They only serve beer but offer free popcorn for snacking.
Cattle and Creek Co — the bar area was closed and they were fixing the cooler so some of the beers were not available. We had some appetizers and brews which were, ironically, from Blacktooth :)
Java Moon Coffee — excellent cafe on Main Street with special house beverages (teas and coffees) and delicious pastries.
The Brinton Museum — the museum is actually in a state-of-the-art building located outside of Sheridan in the town of Big Horn. They have a beautiful collection of western art and Native American artifacts like beaded robes, blankets, and jewelry.
As usual, the weekend went by waaaay too fast but nevertheless it was another wonderful adventure in the books. Can’t wait to return for more!