Sorry you haven’t heard from us in awhile, time gets away from me sometimes. During our last week in Wyoming, we tried to fit in as many daycations as we could. We explored a couple of ghost towns and did some 4x4ing to explore some cool geology with fossilized trees and such. We made plans to visit our favorite cabin in the Bighorns with a Rhino ATV that our neighbors loaned us, but had some challenges getting there. First, we got halfway there when the radiator on the truck started spewing out coolant. We had busted a crack in it. Erich had some adhesive and was able to patch it enough for us to limp back home, where we repacked and loaded our things into the Ford Flex. The next morning we took off for another attempt and got 45 minutes down the road before we realized the ATV keys were still in the truck, at home. But, we finally made it to the Muddy Guard Cabin. It’s like our own personal, little house on the prairie, at the top of a mountain, surrounded by wilderness, bear scat, grizzly tracks, and endless forest service roads to be explored. We only had 24 hours left to play after all the setbacks, and we were determined to enjoy every second of it. We froze our faces and fingers off driving to all the cool rock formations and cliff faces that we could see in the distance. Even Cooper joined us for a little ATV fun. My favorite part of the whole adventure is watching my kids always take so much joy in the simple life. Asia sets off to start the campfire, Jakes grabs the axe and starts “restocking” the already full wood shed, River takes Micah for a walk to collect dry straw to help Asia with the fire because it’s hard to start in the wind. Nobody complains about the lack of electronics, no one grumbles about the outhouse, or washing dishes in icy cold creek water. It’s perfect, except that it goes by too fast. When it’s all said and done, every last one of us is thankful we pushed on, regardless of the obstacles, and enjoyed one last day in the beautiful Bighorn Mountains.
When we returned home, we got busy packing and cleaning up our rental and moving back into our home on wheels! That’s right, it really happened, we got our fifth wheeler back with bigger stronger leaf springs, a reinforced frame, and bigger wheels. We all had mixed emotions; happy to be in our home again, sad to be leaving our adventure in Wyoming, and looking forward to the upcoming birthdays and holidays with the Pederslie side of the family, in Washington state, for the kids’ first time ever.
I feel like Wyoming is America’s best kept secret. And I think that the natives know it, and are content to leave it that way. I can’t blame them, it is a truly, wonderfully wild place. There are so many things I love about Wyoming; the way the leaves on the trees are always dancing in the wind, the way the deer wander through town like they own it, the way the terrain changes so drastically from place to place. I love seeing people driving ATV’s through town, out in the flatlands, and up on the mountaintops. I love finding myself so far out in the wilderness, I don’t even know how far the next closest person is. I love watching the wonder in my kids’ eyes every time we approach the Tetons, the anticipation of seeing wildlife at every turn, their joy in seeing the first snowfall on the mountaintops, their amazement every time we discovered a new canyon, their curiosity contemplating life as it was when the ghost towns were actually just towns. When we were offered our very first travel contract in Wyoming, we weren’t sure what it would be like…but now I’m sure of one thing: Wyoming was THE BEST first (and second) contract we could have ever hoped for. Father knows what we need (and want) even before we do. Our family is entering this season of Thanksgiving with grateful hearts!