Lander, Wyo.: Recreationist’s Paradise

Home to the internationally renowned National Outdoor Leadership School, this Rocky Mountain community located near the Wind River Reservation offers a Wild West feel and an fertile ground for outdoor adventure.


| October/November 2013



Lander Wyoming downtown scene

Wide open space is more than a concept in Lander, Wyo.


Photo By Charles Willgren

Each year, MOTHER EARTH NEWS selects a handful of communities to highlight in our annual Great Places feature. Check out the other towns featured in our 2013 installment of 9 Great Places You've (Maybe) Never Heard of.

Lander, Wyoming. Given its location in the northern Rocky Mountains, next to the Eastern Shoshone and Northern Arapaho’s Wind River Reservation, the only way not to see spectacular scenery in Lander would be to lock yourself in a windowless room. Sitting on your porch watching afternoon thunderheads boil over the purple-mountain horizon is one of the simple joys of Lander life.

Geographically the ninth-largest U.S. state, Wyoming is also the least populated — home to more cattle and antelope than people. If hunting, hiking, fishing, cross-country skiing, mountain biking and world-class rock climbing fit your description of the good life, Lander may seem like a slice of heaven to you.

“It’s a recreationist’s paradise,” says Bruce Palmer, who, as director of admissions and marketing for the internationally renowned National Outdoor Leadership School, knows great recreation when he sees it. He and his wife relocated to Lander from Cleveland in 1990 and have never regretted the move.