Wyoming is a state that is filled with incredible natural wonders. The Rocky Mountains traverse through the state, offering peaks that seem to literally touch the sky. Yellowstone National Park has a home in Wyoming, as do the Grand Tetons and Devil’s Tower.
Despite all of this natural wonder, however, Wyoming is the least populous state in the country as only just over 500,000 people call this rugged land their home.
Because the population levels are light, there are only two dedicated Wyoming doppler radar stations providing coverage of weather events within the state. Supporting coverage comes from the surrounding states and stations from Denver, CO to Billings, MT help to let Wyoming residents know if there is a weather event forming that they need to know about.
Let’s take a look at the two doppler radar stations that do call this agriculturally-based state home:
Cheyenne: The capital city of Wyoming invites you to live the legend, which is exactly what you’ll do if you decide to pay it a visit. Dinosaur fossils surround the area, but many come here to get just a taste of what the life of a Wild West cowboy was really like. Rodeos and steam engines are just the start of your western adventure!
Another aspect of Cheyenne that makes it unique is that it is one of the closest large population centers to the geographical center of North America. It sits at the intersection of two major interstate highways and is the capital city and largest city in Wyoming. About 10% of Wyoming’s total population calls Cheyenne home, or about 60,000 people! The railroads and the government are the primary employers and the military also has a presence in this city that helps the local economy.
Riverton: Located at the Riverton Airport, this Wyoming doppler radar station provides coverage of the Wind River Valley and surrounding area. Called the “Rendezvous City,” Riverton has always been a special place for the people who have called the area home. It is one of the few places in the Wild West where mountaineers, prospectors, and native tribes were able to peacefully co-exist with each other. The city itself, with about 10,000 residents, was built from land ceded out of the local reservation and plotted at the point where four rivers come together.
The fight over who owns the land that the city sits on is just beginning as the Department of Interior has recently acknowledged that Riverton is, in fact, on tribal lands. The State of Wyoming is planning a lawsuit to fight this recent decision.