Wyoming: Of Rivers and Wheels

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The North Platte River. I read about it as a boy; it snaked its way west across the maps I made for school. But not until it rippled between my fingers and swirled around my hand did it come to life.

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In the early 1800’s, trappers and explorers blazed the Oregon Trail; in the latter half of the same century nearly 400,000 settlers yearning for a better life traveled westward along that trail. Ten thousand prairie schooner wheels rutted the soft sandstone of Wyoming that you see here. Notice the dip between the ruts made by the oxen pulling the wagons. In this picture, Lindsay stands at the top of the trail, a stone’s throw from the North Platte River.

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2 thoughts on “Wyoming: Of Rivers and Wheels

    • Miles and miles of this road has reminded me of Texas, but the rivers give it away – the smaller ones are crystal clear and babble along over cobbles and around boulders. Even the larger ones like the Platte look cleaner to me, and the flora along the banks gives them a different look, like this one. In Texas, the banks would be more heavily wooded. And few Texas rivers look so pure.

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