Fishing is for Everyone in the Snowy Range

In the Medicine Bow-Routt National Forest, anyone can be a fisherman–or fisher-woman! With over 75 good fishing lakes in the Snowy Range, there is a fishing spot for everyone. From experienced anglers to novices, seasoned aficionados to young children, the fishing experience here is truly unique and accessible to all.

The Mountain View Historic Hotel

Where to Stay

The small, mountain community of Centennial, Wyoming makes an ideal home-base from which to explore all that the Snowy Range has to offer. Primely situated at the edge of Medicine Bow-Routt National Forest, Centennial is only a 35-minute drive from the larger town of Laramie, and is an excellent choice for outdoors and fishing enthusiasts. Needless-to-say, The Mountain View Historic Hotel is the perfect place for a fisherman to relax after a day on the water. Enjoy the historical atmosphere, rustic charm, and all the comforts of home! The hotel also has a wonderful cafe with delicious breakfast and lunch options, as well as fantastic coffee roasted on-site!

Snowy Range Waterways

Surrounded by the epic beauty of the Snowy Range wilderness, numerous streams, lakes, and reservoirs offer a variety of fishing experiences. Some, like Lake Owen and Rob Roy Reservoir, allow motorized watercraft and are equipped with boat ramps. Others permit only kayaks and canoes, enabling their patrons to absorb the quiet tranquility of a fishing experience “closer to nature.” For more on boating (and fishing) regulations visit the Wyoming Game and Fish website.

Fisherman Rod and ReelNo boat? No problem! Fishing from shore is a great option as well. There is great access along Mirror Lake, Lake Marie, or Lewis Lake—the dam area on Little Brooklyn Lake is a great place for kids to catch fish.

If you’re looking for a more secluded fishing experience, the Shelf Lakes might be just the ticket. A marked hiking trail (intermediate skill level) skirts the edges of these beautiful lakes.

The North Platte River, located just over the mountain, is the recommended river for Fly Fishing. Local experts also highly recommend French Creek and Douglas Creek. However, with the literally dozens of well-stocked lakes in the area, there is certainly no shortage of prime fly-fishing locales.

 So Many Fish, So Little Time

A wonderful array of fish swim in the waterways of the Snowies. Brook, golden, cutthroat, and rainbow trout, along with splake and grayling provide ample opportunities for fly or bait fisherman to try their luck. A variety of fish are stocked regularly by Wyoming Game and Fish.First Fish

The variety of waterways and fish afford no shortage of exceptional experiences, whatever your level of expertise may be. Seasoned fly fishers will find ample challenge to satisfy, and even children can enjoy enough success to instill a life-long love of fishing and the outdoors. After all, there is nothing quite like the thrill of reeling in a fish for the first time—or even the 101st time.

Gear and Supplies

Of course, there are supplies you will need. Fishing licenses can be purchased online from Wyoming Game and Fish or at many hardware stores and gas stations in the area. The West Laramie Fly Store, and their exceedingly helpful staff, are a great source for not only fishing licenses, but also bait, tackle, flies, and just about any other fishing paraphernalia or information you could want. Check out their regularly updated “Fishing Report.”

Fly fisherman can employ an array of gear and tackle to suit their fishing preferences. Nymphing is particularly popular in the alpine waterways—Prince Nymphs, Hare’s Ears, and Copper Johns (size 14-18) are highly recommended—but dry flies are more than adequate as well.

For those who want a truly extraordinary trip, consider hiring Two Dogs Guide Service. These experienced guides offer a terrific selection of guide packages for all abilities and preferences. They also offer full gear and equipment rentals.

The Experience

Elk Snowy RangeThe best times of day for fishing are in the early morning hours and the evening hours. There is a pristine magic in these bewitching hours. Far from the clamor and chaos of civilization, the lilting twitter of an American pipit or brown-capped rosy finch mingles with the rustle of lodge-pole pines and aspen to serenade the mountain explorer. On the glassy mountain lakes–disturbed only by leaping trout–the reflections of rocky peaks and emerald spires, backlit by the rising or setting sun, will literally take your breath away. You may even be fortunate enough to glimpse a moose or an elk emerging from the forest for a cool drink. You can download a map of the Snowy Range Area here.

Other Activities

Cooking TroutOnce the peak fishing hours have passed, there is still plenty of adventure to fill your day. Hike one of the many wonderful trails and have a picnic lunch. Fresh brook trout are renowned for their delectable texture and flavor! Or, head back into Centennial for a delicious lunch at the Mountain View Cafe!

You could also spend some time driving the Snowy Range Scenic Byway, bird-watching, photographing, reading, or exploring the Nici Self Historical Museum in Centennial—the possibilities are endless. For more information check out the Medicine Bow-Routt National Forest: Snowy Range Area website!

Undoubtedly, fishing in the Snowy Range is an adventure everyone will enjoy! There are memories to be made, mountains to be climbed, and fish to be caught.  Come to the Snowies, the trout are biting!

Book your stay at The Mountain View Historic Hotel by May 31st (subject to availability) and get 10% off your room when you mention this blog post!!

 

Leah Veinbergs at Two Little Time

Snowshoeing with Kids!

If you have not tried snowshoeing, it is a fun activity to do with kids. Snowshoeing with kids might sound challenging, but it is similar to hiking with kids, except they will tire out a bit more quickly. The only main difference is practicing the “duck walk” as my family calls it. Your feet have to be spread wider apart than normal when walking so that you do not step on the front or back of your other snowshoe. I have a four and a six-year-old, so we can only go snowshoeing for about two hours or less before my kids get tired.

 

My husband or I bring a backpack with water bottles, extra gloves (one of our kids always finds a way to get his or her gloves wet), an extra hat, etc. The backpack also comes in handy for storing extra clothes as your family sheds layers while snowshoeing. Everyone starts out cold, but by the end of the journey, hats and gloves are off and sometimes coats as well.DSCN2434

One of our favorite spots to go snowshoeing is in the Snowy Range Mountains. The Snowy Range is part of the Medicine Bow Mountains and is located within the Medicine Bow-Routt National Forest. This stretch of mountains is a part of the Rocky Mountains. I know that Colorado gets much acclaim for beautiful mountain scenery, but I can safely say that the Medicine Bow Mountains can certainly compare. If you drive west from Laramie on Highway 130 for about 40 minutes, at the base of the Snowy Range Mountains is Centennial. Entering this small town feels like stepping back in time. It seems like everyone waves and is friendly. As we drive through Centennial, my kids get excited as they know we will be entering the National Forest soon.

My family loves going snowshoeing on the Little Laramie Trailhead in the Snowy Range Mountains. This trailhead is not far from Centennial (about 10 minutes), so it is perfect for a short getaway to the mountains or a daytrip. The trailhead is marked from the highway and there is parking along the side of the highway as sometimes the parking lot is inaccessible in the winter.14111581183_01058c4913_k

This trail is fairly flat, so it is perfect for little kids or beginning snowshoers. We start at the trail closest to the information sign. There is a beautiful snow covered bridge overlooking the frozen Little Laramie River. My kids love crossing this bridge and seeing the frozen water covered in snow. There is a chance of seeing deer, moose, rabbits, etc. along the trail, so that also adds to the appeal.

 

 

In the winter, we look for animal tracks in the snow and try to spot the perfect future Christmas tree. The kids wear snow pants, as inevitably they will stop along the way to make snow angels, roll down small hills, and sit in the snow. We have mini snowball fights and the promise of warmth as we head back to the car.

 

If you need more incentive to encourage the kids to continue along the trail or walk a little faster back to the car, in Centennial, hot chocolate and coffee are waiting at Mountain View Hotel, Cafe, and Coffee Roaster. We love to stop for lunch at this beautiful hotel after a snowshoeing trip. While waiting for you food, you can walk around and look at the antique surfaces of the room and furnishings. My kids love looking at the coffee roaster in the corner of one of the dining rooms that gives the hotel a wonderful coffee smell. When lunch arrives, my family eats and talks about our snowshoeing trip, and my kids ask when we will go again.

As our kids get older, we look forward to bigger adventures: longer hikes to Medicine Bow Peak (12013 feet), downhill skiing, or camping.  As April approaches, we will not put the snowshoes too far away as spring snowstorms are guaranteed and we may want to explore some more.

Book 2 or more nights in May or June and receive 20% off base rates based on occupancy when you mention the Code: I read the March Blog!  Subject to availability. Call or Request Online and put the code in the Guest Notes

Written by: Mountain View Blogger Kim Gianakon

3 Reasons Why You Should Visit Wyoming’s Snowy Range This Winter

 

2019 is here and many are excited for what the New Year has to offer. For those who seek fun, mountain adventures, you may not have all your upcoming adventure destinations mapped out yet. Don’t worry, you have one less destination to worry about because the beautiful Snowy Range Mountains are calling your name this winter!

If you enjoy a day where there is snow under your feet and sun on your face, then our nearby national forest land will satisfy you for all your winter adventure needs. Area trails provide everyone who visits a chance at everything from snowshoeing to sledding, and everything in between. So whether you are seasoned in the wintertime madness or wanting to try something new, we put together 3 reasons why SE Wyoming should be a part of your 2019 travel plans:

#1: It’s Like Going To Grandma’s House

When you go on vacation, you want to feel comfortable and cozy. The Mountain View Hotel & Café is one of the first buildings to welcome you to town and it’s 100-year-old charm is warm and welcoming. Past guests have been quoted saying it felt like going to Grandma’s house and we feel it’s because of our homemade signature dishes, comfy beds, and a warm, welcoming atmosphere.

 

#2: Fun For All Types!

Whether you decide to hit the winter trailheads or head up to the local ski area, getting snow under your feet is no issue here in southeast Wyoming!

Snowshoeing & Cross-Country Skiing Trails: Grab a pair of snowshoes or skis & check out the 200+ miles of Medicine Bow National Forest Service winter trails to explore! No matter if you are looking for a nice relaxing morning of fresh mountain air or wanting a challenging day adventure, the Snowy Range Mountains are your place to be

Notable snowshoe & cross-country ski trails can be accessed at any of the 3 area trailheads; Corner Mountain, Little Laramie & Green Rock Picnic Area. All within 10 miles of Centennial, these USFS day-use areas are perfect for your organized daytime mountain adventures. Immediate trailhead parking may not always be available, but walking in from a safe roadside parking spot is ALWAYS worth it!

Are you and your family coming in from out of town? We’ve got you covered. Stop into our friends at Laramie’s Basecamp in downtown Laramie for snow shoe and cross-country ski rentals during your final pit stops to Centennial!

 

Downhill Skiing & Snowboarding at Snowy Range Ski Area: Do you enjoy no traffic when you head out for a day on the slopes? How about short lift lines, nice people and great snowfall each year? We do too and are spoiled with these luxuries every single winter.

 

Snowy Range Ski Area is a great, family fun establishment that was founded in 1959. Today, you find 4 established lift lines leading to runs that serve all skiing abilities, with most moderate to difficult ski runs being separated from the easier parts of the mountain. What does this mean for families? It’s much easier to stick together but big enough to fulfill every snowrider’s dream.

Other notable features and amenities of Snowy Range Ski Area include additional cross-country ski and snowshoe trails located on the property, their own Gear Rental Shop, Ski & Snowboard School, and an out-of-state Ski Bus that brings in guests from the Fort Collins & Loveland, CO area. For more information, check out their website by clicking here.

Book your stay at the Mountain View Hotel & Café and ask about our Ski & Stay Booking Special! (307) 742-3588

 

#3: We’re a Bit Off the Beaten Path

Located in Southeastern Wyoming, just 30 miles west of Laramie, you will find the small, quiet mountain town of Centennial and our beautiful historic hotel and café. Another 5-minute drive west on Highway 130 plants you at the start of our beloved Snowy Range Mountains.

While it may be a long journey for some to get here, it is well worth the features of any hidden mountain gem; not a lot of people, beauty for miles and everyone is friendly everywhere you go.

 

Support Wyoming Small Businesses:

Book with the Mountain View Hotel and receive a 10% discount code (at the time of booking) for shopping at Laramie’s Basecamp, a local outdoor gear and rental shop located in downtown Laramie! We have paired up with this family-owned small business to help provide you affordable gear and rentals whenever you visit our beloved Snowy Range Mountains.

Recently went shopping at Laramie’s Basecamp and you are feeling hungry or thirsty? Bring in your receipt within 48 hours of purchase and get 10% off any meal or drink at the Mountain View Café! This offer is not valid with any other promotions.

Written by Brianna “Bri” Arnbrecht | http://mountainadventurer307.com/