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Cowboys and outdoor adventures galore

Nestled between the majestic Bighorn Mountains and vast plains of the Wild West, Buffalo is a paradise for fans of the American West, complete with a rich frontier history, a smorgasbord of outdoor adventures and awe-inspiring scenery. In downtown Buffalo, you’ll get to go back to the days of cowboys thanks to historic buildings, fascinating museums, guest ranches and good old-fashioned Western hospitality. Just outside the city, you’ll uncover towering mountains, lush forests, and sparkling lakes waiting to be explored. From fishing and hunting to skiing and hiking, it’s easy to enjoy all your favourite outdoor pursuits in beautiful Buffalo.

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Where Wild West Spirit Lives On 

Get a feel for cowboy life by strolling through Buffalo’s compact downtown core. The main street is home to over a dozen historic buildings, including the Occidental Hotel. Once you step inside this iconic building, you’ll be transported back into the Old West. Gaze at original embossed ceilings in the lobby, take a seat on antique furniture and follow in the footsteps of Butch Cassidy, Calamity Jane, Buffalo Bill, Teddy Roosevelt and other famous guests. In the saloon, you’ll even see original bullet holes in the walls and ceiling.

Afterward, make your way to the Jim Gatchell Memorial Museum. Jim Gatchell was a historian and pharmacist who opened a local drugstore in 1900. Through his job, he got to befriend many notorious characters and the Native Americans of Northeastern Wyoming. These individuals shared their personal stories and gave rare gifts to Gatchell over the years. When he passed away, he had an incredible collection of artifacts, which paved the way for the Jim Gatchell Memorial Museum. Today, the museum houses over 26,000 artifacts, including a military weapons display, sheep wagon representation of Johnson County’s Basque culture, natural history specimens and lots of Native American relics.

If you venture out of the city, you’ll find the Hole-in-the-Wall, Butch Cassidy’s and Sundance Kid’s infamous canyon hideout. Located above the Middle Fork of the Powder River, this remote area is also teeming with wildlife and home to Outlaw Cave, a prehistoric rock shelter. While you’re here, keep your eyes peeled for eagles, mountain lions, elks, deep, antelope, and more.

Once you’ve gotten your fill of frontier heritage, head to In Color Art Gallery to take in stunning works of arts. Here, you’ll get to see local fine art, regional western art, jewelry, pottery, antler accents and home décor. You can also tee off at the Buffalo Golf Club. Tucked away at the foot of the Big Horn Mountains, this 18-hole golf course offers breathtaking views and four sets of tees to accommodate players of all skill levels. Finish your day with a refreshing pint of craft beer at the Clear Creek Brewing Company.

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Go Wild in the Bighorn Mountains

If adventure is what you seek, you’ll find it in the Bighorn Mountains. Packed with alpine meadows, rolling hills, stunning lakes and steep mountain walls, the Bighorn Mountains encompass 189,000 acres of rugged wilderness, making it the ultimate outdoor playground. Enjoy life in the great outdoors at over 30 campgrounds, trek through 1,500 miles of pristine trails and fish to your heart’s content in a plethora of streams. In the winter, popular activities here include downhill skiing, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, and snowmobiling.

Enjoy the beauty of the Bighorn Mountains from the comfort of your car, thanks to multiple scenic byways. Spanning from the Powder River Basin to the Big Horn Basin, the Big Horn Scenic Byway is a 58-mile highway that weaves through untouched meadows, vast canyons and dense forest. Be sure to stop at Shell Falls to admire the 120-foot waterfall and get closer to nature by hiking its numerous trails.

If you’re in the southern part of Bighorn National Forest, cruise on the Cloud Peak Skyway Scenic Byway for dazzling views of limestone walls and Cloud Peak, the tallest peak in the Bighorn Mountains. This 47-mile route will also take you to many historic sites including Fort McKinney and Fort Phil Kearny State Historic Site. At Fort Phil Kearny, learn about the battles that took place between the U.S. Calvary and Native Americans by visiting the on-site interpretive center. Or take a guided tour to visit building locations and archaeological remains. Another popular destination along this route is the Medicine Lodge State Archaeological Site. Considered one of the most important archeological sites in the country, this area features red sandstone cliffs etched with prehistoric petroglyphs and pictographs, allowing you to discover ancient cultures in a whole new way.

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Wyoming Travel & Tourism