Any time of year, visitors can find the spirit of the Old West blowing across the high desert plateau and through the area's red rock formations creating plenty of ways to catch the cowboy spirit around Sweetwater County.
Where there are cowboys and horses there are rodeos, and visitors will find a rodeo event happening somewhere in the county about every other week.
A large part of Sweetwater's rodeo clout is due to the spacious facilities of the Sweetwater Events Complex near downtown Rock Springs. This premier venue hosts thousands of competitors and spectators each year for all kinds of cowboy skills and thrills, including bareback riding, steer wrestling, team roping, saddle bronc riding, tie-down roping, bull riding and barrel racing.
From July 25 to 27 the Red Desert Roundup – twice voted “The Best Mountain States Circuit PRCA Rodeo” – offers families rockin' rodeo fun plus activities to get out of the stands and into the excitement including special rodeo events, a 5K race and parade. The “world’s largest rodeo,” the National High School Finals Rodeo, runs July 14 to 20 and features more than 2,000 competitors.
Sweetwater, located halfway between Yellowstone and Canyonlands National Parks, knows cowboys need space to wander, and the wide-open territory of Southwest Wyoming is frontier land. In fact, the area lays claim to more miles of still-visible pioneer trails in all the United States, including sections of the Pony Express Route. Wild ponies also traverse the land and can be spotted tossing their manes along the Pilot Butte Wild Horse Scenic Loop Tour. Venturing further out, wanderers will come across evidence of early Native Americans as surely as cowboys of the Old West did. The White Mountain Petroglyphs feature over a dozen panels bearing hundreds of figures etched into sandstone bedrock of the Eocene Bridger formation.
Visit the Sweetwater County website for activity information, as well as an events calendar, itineraries and other vacation planning tools.
For more information about top events in Wyoming take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual festivals and events in Wyoming.