Day 84-85 August 25-26: Jeffrey City to Lander; in Lander
Jeffrey City is a sad little town.
Most of the buildings in town are boarded up and in disrepair,
and the people have a beaten attitude about them.
I learned while having breakfast at the cafe that Jeffrey City once had about 5000 people,
and now it has about 100.
There had been a uranium mill that processed the uranium ore mined nearby in the Gas Hills,
but the government shut it down about 15 years ago.
When that happened, Jeffrey City mostly shut down.
At one time there had been two bars, a liquor store, at least two churches, some stores, and a high school.
Now there's just the bar/cafe and the old Coates motel.
For sale signs are on most of the rest of the buildings, but their paint is fading.
I left it as early as I could.
The road to Lander was more of the same kind of road that I'd ridden yesterday. It was quiet, and the miles finally ticked away.
Lander is a pretty, quiet little town of about 7000 people. They have a nice city park that allows camping for up to 3 days, a decent little library, some good restaurants, and the National Outdoor Leadership School, which is the leader in wilderness education. They also had a number of climbers who were in town to climb the nearby Wild Iris and other popular and challenging climbing areas. At the library, I ran into a couple of climbers who I'd camped next to at Yosemite.
I decided to spend the whole next day there to rest and to enjoy the town. I got a shower and swam at the local swimming pool, had a couple of microbrews at the local bar, spent some time in the library and park reading, and generally goofed off.
I spent a good portion of my free day at the library, writing a program to help me produce the web pages in the form I want. Amazingly, I can still program. Of course, it isn't quite done yet (those of you who are programmers will understand this), but I will get it to the point where I can use it.