For those who wish to escape from the big crowds at the Wyoming National Parks, the Grayrocks Reservoir is a nice choice for a summer season outing. In fact, because the highest percentage of Wyoming visitors only go to Grand Teton or Yellowstone, that leaves plenty of breathing room practically anywhere else in this sparsely populated state. When one strays away from the densely populated tourism areas, plenty of open campsites can be found and making reservations is unheard of. There is a lot of room to roam in the big square state and Grayrocks Reservoir is a good example of the lesser known gems that await to be discovered.
The Grayrocks Wildlife Habitat Management Area is located just a few miles west of Fort Laramie National Historic Park. Grayrocks is about the same distance east of Interstate Highway 25 in Wheatland, so civilization is close enough to reach. There are several points of interest in the neighboring Medicine Bow National Forest and Curt Gowdy State Park is only about an hour away, so there is plenty to explore in this region, even though not much shows up on an average map.
The Grayrocks Reservoir Lake is the main attraction in this wildlife area, which offers a chance to cool off during the peak heat of summer. The Wyoming Department Of Fish & Game oversees Grayrocks, so as can be imagined, this is a good place to be during the autumn rutting season. An early morning wildlife viewing venture during late summer at Grayrocks may reward visitors with scenes of deer standing in wild sunflower fields, while the birding around the lake will be equally rewarding. A boat ramp and basic facilities with ample room for parking is available at the main public area, while dispersed camping is allowed at existing sites along the shoreline. Changes were recently made concerning the camping regulations due to local cattle ranching, so it is best to check the rules prior to arrival and maybe stop eating beef.
The Wildlife Habitat Management Areas of Wyoming certainly are a good option for escaping from the big crowds and these places are where the local folk are met. Good word of mouth often lends to more opportunities for outdoor adventures and the locals sure do know the best places to go to, especially when there are few mainstream attractions to be found when browsing a map. The Grayrocks landscape certainly is unique and the free camping is appealing while doing a budget minded tour, so be sure to keep this lesser known gem in mind when passing through southeast Wyoming!
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