Yellowstone National Park, it's wonderland. Old Faithful and the majority of the world's geysers are preserved here. They are the main reason the park was established in 1872 as America's first national park - an idea that spread worldwide.
mountain wildland, home to grizzly bears, wolves, and herds of bison and elk, the park is the core of one of the last, nearly intact, natural ecosystems in the Earth’s temperate zone.
When the explorer John Frémont first saw the mountains of Wyoming in 1842, he remarked that it seemed as if "Nature had collected all her beauties together in one chosen place."
Each year countless visitors to Wyoming must agree, as they enjoy its magnificent forests and parks, use its excellent facilities for camping, climbing, and hunting, or fish along its crystal-clear streams. Wyoming's Wild-West past heightens its color and interest. The state is one of the most popular vacationlands in the United States and a mecca for all Americans who relish the outdoor life.
Two of the most famous and spectacular parks in the United States are located in Wyoming. Yellowstone National Park, the largest and oldest in the nation, has most of its acreage in the state. Grand Teton National Park is located directly south of Yellowstone.
The federal government also manages nearly 9.3 million acres of forestland in Wyoming. Four national forests, the Shoshone, Medicine Bow, Bridger-Teton, and Big Horn, lie wholly within the state. Five others, Targhee, Wasatch, Black Hills, Ashley, and Caribou, have additional acreage in other states.
All nine forests permit hunting, fishing, picnicking, camping, and boating. In addition, Wyoming has a number of national recreation areas, wilderness areas, and wildlife preserves, the most famous of which is the National Elk Refuge in Jackson Hole. The magnificent Bighorn Canyon, near Lovell on the west slope of the Bighorn Mountains, is missed by many visitors, but is easily viewed from paved highways in the Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area.
The state of Wyoming maintains several recreational facilities. The world's largest hot springs are located at Hot Springs State Park, at Thermopolis. In the mid-1990s Wyoming had 22 state parks and historic sites. Many of the parks have facilities for fishing, boating, camping, and picnicking. The largest is Boysen State Park, in central Wyoming.
The National Park Service administers two national monuments in Wyoming. One, Devils Tower National Monument, a volcanic rock formation near the Belle Fourche River, is primarily of scenic interest. The other, Fossil Butte National Monument, near Kemmerer, contains the fossils of fishes that lived in the area about 50 million years ago, when the region was a seabed.
Fort Laramie National Historic Site recalls Wyoming's vivid past, for many of its buildings were used in the l9th century when Fort Laramie was the most important military post on the Oregon Trail. The state of Wyoming has also restored or rebuilt a number of forts important in Wyoming's history.
These include Fort Bridger, founded in 1843 by mountain man James Bridger, and Fort Fetterman, built in 1867 and named after an army officer who had been killed by Native Americans in the previous year. Platte Bridge Battlefield, on the Oregon Trail near Casper, and Connor Battlefield Historic Site, near Sheridan, mark battles of 1865. South Pass City, near Lander, is a ghost town that has been restored by the state and attracts visitors interested in life in a gold-mining town of the late 1860s.
Other interesting places to visit are Independence Rock and Register Cliff, landmarks on the Oregon Trail for l9th-century pioneers, thousands of whom inscribed their names on them. Hole-in-the-Wall is a gorge 35 mi long in central Wyoming that long served as a hideout for outlaws some of whom ended up in the Territorial Prison in Laramie.