So I’ve decided to expand the focus of this blog. Instead of it being totally nature focused, I’m going to add in a few snippets of general living in Wyoming, which according to our state tourism department, is “Like No Place On Earth.” I’d have to agree with that – Wyoming is an amazing place and I love it! Here’s something I wrote after driving around one day.
Wyoming is ordinary in an extraordinary way. It takes years to build up an appreciation for the subtle beauty Wyoming has to offer. Everyday landscapes take on a depth of color and texture unmatched anywhere else.
I moved here from Colorado and was spoiled by 14000 foot peaks soaring into sky, punctuated by the deep greens and blinding golds of fall-turned aspen. Wyoming’s landscapes seemed insignificant after all that grandeur.
But now that I’ve lived here 15 years, I’ve come to realize how incredibly beautiful this place really is. I am astounded to see the layers of mountain ranges in the late afternoon sun, the lengthening rays highlighting craggy volcanic cliffs and jagged peaks. These mountains are massive in their breadth, if not quite their height. Huge chunks of rocks rise out of the river bottoms, with intimidatingly steep slopes and deep ravines through which rush countless streams.
The colors here are just as quietly breathtaking as the big scenery. Everywhere you look there’s a crayon box of yellows, browns, olives and grays. Who would ever thought I’d be captivated by the muted, yet vibrant colors of a cow pasture? Or be speechless when looking at the bare golden branches of a fall cottonwood glowing against a deep blue stormy sky?
Wyoming has captured my soul. I love this stark, barren, drought-choking land. I love how the wind shrieks past my house, slamming against the western wall with the force of a hurricane. They say you can never get the dirt of Africa out of your soul once you’re been there. If you let it, Wyoming permeates your spirit in the same way.
This is land that makes you feel alive. It is not country to take for granted. A hard land creates tough people. Living here takes more effort than other, more civilized and gentler places.
The beauty, the harshness, the effort it takes to thrive here is what makes Wyoming so unique. The next time you visit, take a moment to savor the ordinary and look for the extraordinary. It’s there, it just takes a little time to see it.