Wyoming's Wind River Canyon corridor turns 100 years old this year.

It was used as a route long before it became anything "official" by the state of Wyoming. American Indians and later trappers used the canyon as a vital link between north and southwest Wyoming.

Railroad tracks were laid on one side of the canyon and are still in use today.

Many improvements have been made since the state carved out a road for cars.

This area is under constant work, even today, due to falling rocks.

Now, federal grant money is coming for a study on more improvements.

The U.S. Department of Transportation recently announced $1.8 billion for infrastructure projects nationwide,

$1.6 million will head toward Wind River Canyon for a resilience and feasibility study.

Below is a photo of what this passageway looked like when the first automobiles drove through it.

attachment-Early Wind River Canyon

This is a vital road that links northern and southern Wyoming through the remote Big Horn Basin.

Summer traffic in the canyon totals about 5,000 vehicles a day.

Landslides will always happen because it's a rocky canyon.

With its high walls carved through a mountain slope, the canyon makes its own weather.

When a landslide does close the road alternate routes are either 85 or 150 miles out of the way.

WYDOT is exploring an alternate route that today is a hard road to drive. It connects the towns of Lysite and Ten Sleep.

The alternative route that WYDOT is offering is also one of the most beautiful drives in the state.

If you suffer from "get-there-itus" then this is not the trip for you.

But if you want an all-day trip where you plan to jump out and look at one awe-inspiring view after the next, you'll want to start on Badwater Road and head north.

Driving Wyoming's Badwater Road

A road trip through Wyoming backcountry shows the gorgeous sights and long history The Cowboy State has to offer.

Gallery Credit: Glenn Woods

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