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Section 2: Trip Seven

Bates Creek Reservoir Loop and Option

 

Open Google Map at GPS Coordinates:

 
Beginning: 42.643358, -106.419414
     Ending: 42.543599, -106.451021
 

This trip begins by turning east off W-487 at mile #63. About a half mile from the highway is a road going north, but stay on N-402 and follow Corral Creek into the Canyon. This is a beautiful drive past cedar, cottonwood, tall sagebrush, and lichen covered boulders. The road swings southeast and then south after about three miles.

Just after crossing the creek, you can see Rocky Gap off to the east a bit. You then climb over a divide and drop down to Bates Creek (six miles from Corral Creek). The road follows above the creek through a small basin. After about two miles, the creek cuts through a gorge to the east and you cross Chalk Creek above a nice little waterfall.

From the falls, the road climbs out of the basin and goes past a 2-track road turning north at Mud Springs Draw. Continue to the top of the rim and 100 yards past the Bates Creek Reservoir Road is a junction. Here N-402 continues southeast to the option below.

To stay on the loop trip going back to W-487, turn southwest toward the Ferris and Pedro Mountains on the Bates Hole Stock Trail (N-403). After a couple of miles the road swings northwest and, as you drop of the rim, you have a great view of the Bates Hole area. The road then winds around below a rim rock canyon and past several dry washes.

As you continue going down through Sand Draw, you can see Chalk Mountain, Horse Peak, and Bear Mountain off to the south. You then pass by Twin Buttes (off to the north) and head toward Haystack Butte to the west. Two miles further you hit W-487 at mile #57.

OPTION: To the Cold Springs Road.

If you continue southeast on N-402, the road travels along the rim for about 10 miles. Along this stretch, you can see the Shirley Mountains to the southwest; to the south are the Freezeout Mountains (below Elk Mountain), and to the southeast is the Snowy Range. To the west are the Pedro Mountains and Chalk Mountain. To the east and around to the north are the Laramie Mountains.

At the next junction you can take the road northeast over to Deer Creek (four miles) and then to a small junction on Curry Creek. There you can turn north to Deer Creek Canyon. Or you can continue east for three more miles to another junction on Curry Creek. There you can go northeast on the Boxelder Road to Glenrock (4WD), or you can continue southeast to the Cold Springs Road (seven miles) at Little Medicine (see page 37).

Back at the junction on the rim, turn southeast and drop down over Dugway Rim. You pass by a small road turning east and continue south for about five miles to the Little Medicine Bow River. After crossing the river, you head south for five miles (and pass by a road going west to the mine) to a major junction. (N-402 is C-97 at this end).

At this junction, you can turn southwest on C-97 and hit W-487 at mile #18, north of Medicine Bow. Also at this junction, you can turn northeast on A-62 and go two miles to another junction. There you can continue northeast on A-62 to Douglas, or turn southeast on A-619 to Rock River or Wheatland (see page 32).

The original "bed and breakfast" run by young Norman and his mother is found on the short trip. After the well ran dry and the shower wouldn't work, both Norman and his mother were reported to have managed a small motel on the coast.