We recently discovered a great place to stay. Not just a great place for us but a near perfect place making it the first time we’ve stayed an unplanned 6 days boondocking! Worked well because we’d just filled up with water and emptied the gray tank.
In our last update, we decided it was time to leave Red Lodge, MT. I was itching to find both a new area to explore and kick back for a few days. To keep it interesting, I began hunting for an area with trails and potentially kayaking.
Our driving plan has us looping back through Wyoming and eventually landing in Rawlins before returning to our Idaho property. So with the general direction in mind, I started hunting for where to stop. Stop one was simply a return to the Walmart in Cody, WY. Since it was a short drive, we drove in the late afternoon, stocked up on supplies, had dinner and turned in.
The second stop took a little more planning since my goal was to go somewhere we’ve not been and keep the driving to 200 miles max. It was time to hit the maps and apps for a couple hours one afternoon and see if I can find anything worthwhile.
First, I found a trail to a mountain lake. The main forest road to the trail head is called Louis Lake RD or FR-300. Then, after a little more map reading, I figured out that the area has multiple established campgrounds at different lakes and also has dispersed camping areas sprinkled all over.
With trails, a state park, the lakes it could be an ideal area for us to explore. Explore we did! We spent three afternoons exploring; one of the outings was on a 4WD trail and jeep got a workout.
Our Unicorn Camping Spot Defined
Our definition of a perfect boondocking area may be different than someone else. We don’t need water or power. We have both a toilet and shower. We do desire some connectivity along with a comfortable, scenic parking spot in an area with outdoor activities and/or site seeing opportunities. With the right timing the weather and bugs will also impact the stay.
It’ll be an area that offers us shade from the heat, but enough sun to keep our batteries topped off. It’ll be roomy with sites spread apart for both privacy and quiet (we really don’t want to hear a generator). It’ll have things to do in the area whether it is hiking, a kayak area, an attraction, a city with site seeing or something else we enjoy. And the topper is to have internet access. I know, some purist will say why do you need to be connected? Isn’t the whole point to just be disconnected.
Well, when you’re living in an RV/camper like we are, we conduct our life from the road and it’s actually more relaxing to keep our digital life organized on the fly rather than chase down connectivity. It allows us to research the area, download maps we need offline and even plan the next travel leg. It’s also entertaining to have some social contact and streaming media. That being said, we’re always happy to disconnect and disappear for a few days like we did when we explored The Kirwin Trail in 2021. I have to say, we were both unsure and optimistic about how well our newly setup AT&T data plan and new MiMo Antenna for the LTE router would perform. After our recent weeks on the road, it has proven to be very successful.
Here’s a more detailed post on the actual camping area. Scroll down for more on our stay in this area.
Louis Lake Road (aka Scenic Loop Road) near Lander, WY
When I first researched this area, I was drawn to the trails and lakes. Since we had to scrub our backpacking trip this year, I thought a jeep trail would at least give me us an opportunity to get to a more remote mountain lake for an afternoon. Besides the jeep trail, the area is known for the Scenic Loop Road. You can google that and find more details on the drive, the pass and the map that I have below.
Driving the scenic loop and Sinks Canyon was a fun drive up and over the pass.
Sinks Canyon is very unique. Not the canyon itself but the Middle Pope Agie River This river disappears for 100′ underground. It travels through miles of rock and comes back up in a trout pool. We stopped and spent some time at the trout pond and enjoyed a young girl having fun getting fish food to throw into the pond. The trout were very large and hungry.
Unfortunately, my camera storage was full by the time we got to the Sinks Canyon area. Check out the drive and various lakes by watching our vlog video below.
On the way back to camp we left the highway and followed Red Canyon Road. Jeep needed to get dirty! It turned out to be an easy drive along the base of red cliffs. Very pretty.
4WD Christina Lake Trail
My finding the Louis Lake Road area was when I found this trail in OnX-OffRoad. It is a documented trail to a big mountain lake. Knowing we put backpacking on the back burner, I thought this could be a replacement day trip.
The trail is 9 miles long and you can see the forest and the trail drive in our vlog below. OnX gave the trail a 5/10 technical rating. Now we’ve taken jeep out on 5/10 trails before, but not like this. Watch the journey for yourself. Do we make it there in back? Do we run into trouble or any critters?
An amazing stay best told with video. Join the journey. See the scenic loop road and the zig zag pass. Learn if Jeep actually made it all the way on the 9mi 4WD trail.
If you’re ever in WY, we highly recommend the Louis Lake Rd and the Sinks Canyon State Park area for recreation fun. Lander, WY is not too far away and makes an excellent supply stop before, during and after your trip to the area. Now that I’ve been spoiled with this perfect stay, our next stop is a short hop away and involves water and a kayak and some not very much fun bugs.
If you enjoy personal travel stories and especially camping, follow this blog by entering your email below. You can also follow us on Instagram @WorkingOnExploring or @Maximus.4×4.camper, and subscribe to our WorkingOnExploring YouTube Channel on for our build and trip clips. Good luck on your own exploring and we’ll see you from the road somewhere soon!
Follow WorkingOnExploring travels and ongoing #SundayStills photo Challenge Posts
Delivered directly to your email inbox.