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Whiskey Basin Wildlife Habitat Management Area
Whiskey Basin Wildlife Habitat Management Area is four miles east of Dubois off U.S. Highway 26/287. The 12,181-acre area was established in 1954 to provide crucial winter range for bighorn sheep. In fact, Whiskey Basin is home for 1,200 bighorns, the largest herd in the world. A camp on the area serves as the site for the Wyoming Game & Fish Department-sponsored annual youth and teachers conservation camps.
You will find sagebrush grasslands, riparian (creek bottom) zones, rocky slopes and forested areas. The basin has been shaped by glaciers. The area along the Wind River Mountains provides an excellent place to view, photograph and study bighorn sheep from late November through April. Winter is very stressful for these and many other animals. You can reduce human disturbance by viewing animals from your vehicle. By doing this, you help ensure the survival of wintering wildlife like bighorn sheep.
Besides bighorn sheep, you will find elk, moose, deer, coyotes, rabbits and many songbirds. Some sandhill cranes nest here. Two miles of Torrey Creek and three glacial lakes provide fishing opportunities for rainbow, lake, brook and brown trout, ling and whitefish. The elevations are high, anywhere from 7,000 feet to almost 9,000 feet. The scenery is spectacular.
Whiskey Basin was a favorite winter ground for the Sheepeater Clan of the Shoshone Tribe because of the relatively mild winters and the abundance of big game. Petroglyphs carved in the large glacial rocks by the Sheepeaters provide a vivid history of this area. These petroglyphs are irreplaceable treasures. Please help to protect and preserve them.
After a day of observing bighorn sheep, stop at the Bighorn Sheep Center in Dubois on U.S. Highway 26/287. Hours are 9 a.m. to 8 p.m., Sunday through Saturday through Labor Day. After Labor Day, the center is open Thursday through Monday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Vehicle access is restricted from December 1 through May 15. Foot access is allowed all year. Trail Lake road is open to vehicles all year, weather permitting.
Last Modified: December 21, 2010