Monday June 18 – Cheyenne WY

Well, it sounds like it was a good day to move on to Cheyenne.  It was 99 degrees in Denver today and at 9 AM, while we were getting ready to hook up and leave, the power went out in the entire RV park.  By the time we left around 10:30, it was getting very hot in the motorhome.  We would be willing to bet there were a lot of frantic campers trying to remember how to check their rig’s fuses before figuring out it was a campground power outage.  There were a lot of campers becoming friends and visiting as “Do you have power?” rang out all across the campground.  The last we heard before we left is they were hoping to have the power on before 1 PM and we never did hear what caused the outage.  We hightailed it up I-25 to Cheyenne and got a good view of the fires to the west of Fort Collins.  Lots of smoke in the air but we couldn’t smell it while inside with the air conditioner going.  Got checked in and set up at our campground, fixed some lunch and headed for the Wyoming State Capitol Building to get a picture of our last addition to our collection for this trip.  While driving to the historic train station we saw a sign for free horse drawn carriage tours and by the time we found a parking spot, took a couple of pictures of the big boots and the train station the carriage was available.  It was big enough for about 10 people but we ended up getting our own personal tour.  Really nice since the next tour was overfull and had a lot of little kids aboard.  Learned that Wyoming didn’t become a state until the year after Washington did.  One of their problems was coming up with the required 20,000 registered voters.  They solved the problem by being the first state to allow women to vote.  Many cattle barons made Cheyenne their home in the past and nearby F.E. Warren Air Force Base is one of three strategic missile bases in the US.  Found “Big Boy” one of 25 of  the world’s largest steam engines, that were built exclusively for Union Pacific by the American Locomotive Company in Schenectady, NY, between 1941 and 1944.  Each locomotive was 132 feet long and weighed 1.2 million pounds.  Because of their great length, the frames of the Big Boys were hinged or articulated to allow them to negotiate curves. During construction of the first engine, a worker chalked “Big Boy” on the smoke box door, and the nickname was adopted. The engines normally operated on the rugged run between Cheyenne and Ogden Utah.

Tomorrow we plan to head north to Guernsey WY to see the Oregon Trail Wagon ruts and Fort Laramie.

Picture Link

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