The Laramie Range is located in southeast Wyoming. It is lower in elevation than the surrounding ranges, but is still considered part of the Central Rocky Mountain chain. The mountains extend southward from Casper and run between Laramie and Cheyenne. North of the range, the gap between the Laramie Range and the Bighorn Mountains provided the route for early settlers on the Oregon trail. Bordering the east side of the range is Interstate 25 and the towns of Douglas, Glenrock, and Wheatland. The west side of the range is less populated and include the town of Laramie, the Snowy Mountains, and the Hanna, Shirley, and Laramie Basins. The Laramie mountains are managed by the Medicine Bow National Forest.
Laramie Peak, Wy
The Laramie Range is appx. 130 miles long and 20 - 25 miles wide. The rock is composed of precambrian granite that rose up some 50 - 70 million years ago. The highest peaks (above 8,000 feet) are much smaller than the high peaks of the mountains to the west and south. The highest point in the Wyoming part of the range is Laramie Peak (10,274 feet), located in the center of the range. The highet point in the range lies in the Colorado part of the mountians and is called South Bald Mountain at 11,003 feet. The general elevation for most peaks is about 7,000 feet. The east side of the range is more dominant in elevation, rising 3,000 feet above the plains, while the west side rises about 1,500 feet. The lowest point in the range is found on the North Platte River at 4,500 feet. The entire mountain range lies below treeline.
View of Laramie Peak and surrounding mountains
View of the rock formations on Laramie Peak
Peaks of the Laramie Mountains
South Bald Mountain 11,003 feet
Laramie Peak 10,272 feet
Black Mountain 9,949 feet
Warbonnet Peak 9,414 feet
Casper Mountain 8,200 feet
Twin Mountains 8,146 feet
Mount Margaret 7,957 feet
Black Mountain 7,860 feet
Ice Cave Mountain 7,773 feet
Greyrock Mountain 7,613 feet
There are several roads that roll through the Laramie mountains. Casper, Glenrock, Douglas, Wheatland, Cheyenne, and Laramie all have roads that travel in and around the mountains. The only paved road through the range is the 52 mile long Highway 34 from Wheatland to a valley just north of Laramie. This, however, is not the most scenic road through the range.
For the best scenery the Laramie Mountains have to offer, you will have to take the road to Laramie Peak. For this drive you will want to go to the small town of Esterbrook. Esterbrook can be accessed from exit 111 on I-25 at glendo or driving south from Douglas on Hwy. 39. 18 miles west of Esterbrook is the Friend Park Campground and the trailhead for Laramie Peak. If you continue west on this road past the Friend Park Campground, you have the option of going north to Douglas, southwest to the town of Rock River, or south and then east to Wheatland. These roads can be traveled in a car, but if muddy or rainy conditions are present, it may be hard going at times. The roads in the area are, for the most part, lightly traveled. As any outdoor adventurer should already know, be sure to bring plenty of water and fill up your gas tank before venturing in to the mountains.
[img:559387:alignleft:medium:View of the rock formations on Laramie Peak]
Some of the camping in and around the Laramie Mountains include:
Yellow Pine Campground
18 Miles from Laramie, 8,400 feet, 19 sites
Tie City Campground
10.5 Miles from Laramie, 8,600 feet, 15 sites
Cambell Creek Campground
40 miles SW of Douglas, 6,200 feet, 8 sites
Curtis Gulch Campground
38 miles SW of Douglas, 6,600 feet, 6 sites
As some of the Laramie Mountains lie in the Medicine Bow National Forest, other parts lie on private land. It is sometimes almost impossible to tell if you are on private or public land in some areas. It is best to contact and obtain a map from the BLM in Rawlings.
1300 North Third Street
Rawlings, WY 82301
For more information on the Laramie Mountains and the Medicine Bow National Forest contact:
USDA Medicine Bow-Routte National Forest
2648 Jackson Street
Laramie, WY 82070
Medicine Bow USDA Forest Service website