By: Greg Rasanen
Just west of the coal town of Rock Springs is my hometown, Green River. It also got its start as a stage station on the Overland Trail. When the railroad was built though town it became one of the major hubs for rail routes on the western side of the continental divide.
The railroad hub also made it a convenient stepping off point for several expeditions, to include early trips into Yellowstone, and the first rafting expeditions down the Green/Colorado Rivers and Grand Canyon by John Wesley Powell in 1869 and 1871.
Thomas Moran, a famous American painter started his trip to Yellowstone from Green River and painted some of his most famous paintings, based on sketches he did in Green River, to include several of the Palisades.
The Lincoln Highway ran through Green River, and I-80 still runs along the north side of town. However, don’t just drive by, stop and enjoy the same buttes that so impressed Thomas Moran, and visit the County Museum or Expedition Island where you can learn more about the Powell Expeditions, railroad history, wild horses and more.
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