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Section 4: Trip Seven

Hanna and Medicine Bow north to the Miracle Mile


Open Google Map at GPS Coordinates:

Beginning: 41.875299, -106.556083
     Ending: 42.208077, -106.876612

This route has two starting points. Trip number one begins by turning off US-30 at mile #252. Here you take W-72 north for one mile to Hanna. After crossing the tracks, you turn east for a half mile to Jefferson Street. Turn north on Jefferson Street (C-291). After leaving Hanna, the road travels through an old mining area and the pavement ends after five miles. The road travels through Hanna Draw and the mining area for another eight miles to the Medicine Bow River (14 miles from the highway). After crossing the river, the road follows along Troublesome Creek for a mile to the junction with C-270 from Medicine Bow.

Trip number two begins by turning off US-30 at mile #269 west of Medicine Bow. As you head north on C-121, you can see the Snowy Range Mountains to the south, Elk Mountain to the southwest, and to the north are the Freezeout Mountains. The road passes Allen Lake and swings northwest toward the Shirley Mountains.

After a couple of miles, you pass by a road going north and you can see Pine Butte behind Fossil Ridge to the northeast. The road then crosses Pine Draw and drops down below Wildcat Top to the Medicine Bow River (10 miles from the highway). Three miles from the river crossing is a junction. Here C-121 turns north and goes past Beer Mug Mountain to Difficulty.

Continue west on C-270 and across Difficulty Creek. After five miles (and passing by a couple of ranch roads going north), you come to a junction with C-291 from Hanna at Troublesome Creek.

Now that both routes have joined, you turn northwest on C-291 and cross Troublesome Creek. One mile further, you go by C-191 that turns off north toward Bald Mountain. Stay west and after about four miles the road begins traveling along a razorback ridge (part of Schneider Ridge) for the next six miles. As the road turns north, you can see Seminoe Reservoir to the west and the Seminoe Mountains off to the northwest. The road climbs Schneider Ridge and drops down to the old Austin Creek School.

After crossing Austin Creek, the road swings around the end Horseshoe Ridge and begins to climb up a bit. At the top, a small road turns west along the ridge and toward Seminoe Reservoir.

Stay on the main road north and you go through a pass between the Shirley Mountains and the Seminoe Mountains. Along here you cross Saylor Creek and Corral Creek, and you lose sight of Elk Mountain to the south, but you can now see the Pedro Mountains to the north. To the far northwest are the Granite Mountains. About seven miles further, the road crosses Lost Creek and then drops down to two junctions at Leo (three more miles) in the Sage Creek drainage. Along this stretch you can now see the Ferris Mountains to the west.

At the first junction you can take C-102 east and travel past the Shirley Mountains and Freezeout Mountains to W-77 at mile #132 (see page 73). Continue north for one mile to the second junction. Here you can go north on C-291 to W-220 at Alcova.

Turn west on C-351 for four miles to the Miracle Mile on the North Platte River. From here you can travel through the Seminoe Mountains to I-80 at Sinclair (see page 70).

A photo of a snow storm in Shirley Basin.