I’ve never claimed to be a country girl, but for some reason, the small towns of the West appeal to me. I start to think about what life would be like in them. Last summer, I fell in love with Jackson Hole, the wealthiest place in Wyoming. And this summer, I visited the second wealthiest: Sheridan. I’ll admit that I’d heard little of the town until I heard about a professional meeting taking place there. But I was down for another adventure and booked my ticket.
So what’s in Sheridan? It’s at the crossroads of many places, in the middle of routes to Yellowstone, Badlands, and Glacier national parks. It’s on the edge of the Bighorn National Forest and an hour from Montana’s Crow Reservation, home to Little Bighorn National Battlefield. It’s a good place to stop and get your bearings before continuing driving through the prairies. And if you really want to, there are air connections from Denver.
Where to Eat
Because I was in town for a conference, I didn’t get to fully experience all of the restaurants that Sheridan had to offer, but the ones I did try were fantastic.
Wyoming Culinary Institute– See what the next generation of chefs are cooking up at this culinary school where the students create a seasonally-changing menu.
Frackelton’s– Located in a historic hardware building, this restaurant has international flavors and craft cocktails. I had the tuna sandwich with sweet potato fries and a habañero margarita.
P.O. News & Flagstaff Cafe– A lunch favorite since 1907, this eatery offers salads, burgers, and sandwiches that use as many local ingredients as possible.
Java Moon– This place came recommended by a fellow blogger as where you should get your morning jolt. The coffee shop also carries breakfast, lunch, and pastries.
Red Velvet Bakery– This spot shares space with a super cute retail store, so once you’ve had your fill of tasty sandwiches, pastries, and coffee, browse the racks.
Where to Drink
You’d be surprised how many places there are to imbibe in such a small town. There’s a craft beer scene and a watering hole dating back to the early days of the West.
Luminous Brewhouse– This humble downtown taproom hosts live music and events every week, along with tastings. Try the Black Mountain Coffee Ale along with their rotating seasonal taps.
Black Tooth Brewing Co LLC– One of the biggest breweries in the state, Black Tooth is open daily for tastings. The Bomber Mountain Amber Ale is a drinkable favorite.
Koltiska Distillery– The family owned and operated distillery makes KO, a 90-proof liqueur that is smoother than your average spirit. Grab a cocktail or buy a bottle to take home.
Mint Bar– Since 1907, this bar has stood in Sheridan and once even operated as a speakeasy. Legends tell of horses enjoying a drink inside and the walls are covered in locals’ cattle brands.
What to Do
Most of the best “things to do” in Sheridan are to spend time outdoors. But browsing downtown’s shops and admiring the artwork are worthwhile as well. There’s also an abundance of battlefields within a short drive that history buffs will appreciate.
Bighorn National Forest– A highlight for me was driving through this area on my way out of town. There’s also a Native American medicine wheel that amazed me. Keep an eye out for creatures around every turn!
The Brinton Museum– Tucked into the plains outside of Sheridan, the Brinton Museum boasts an environmentally responsible building and an impressive collection of Western art and artifacts.
King’s Saddlery– More than just a store that sells rope, saddles, and other gear for your horses, this local landmark also has a museum in the back. Here you’ll find Native American artifacts, historic photos, a large selection of saddles, and other items from the Old West.
Trail End Historic Center– This 13,000+ square foot mansion was the home of the Kendrick family until the 1930s. Built in the Flemish Revival style, the museum informs visitors about John Kendrick’s rise from local politician to governor and later to senator.
Where to Stay
You can use your stay in Sheridan to pamper yourself after nights out in the wild or to do the opposite. There’s a wide range of accommodation options.
Holiday Inn Sheridan-Convention Center– My home for the few days I was in Sheridan is this standard convention hotel near the highway. It was close to a number of large stores and restaurants.
Sheridan Inn– This historic hotel was built in 1893 and once hosted Buffalo Bill and his Wild West Show. Today, it still operates as an inn as well as a bar and restaurant.
Mill Inn– The flour mill-turned-motel has 42 guest rooms with views of the Bighorn Mountains and all the amenities.
Eatons Ranch– There are a few guest ranches around Sheridan, but this one is the oldest in the United States. First started by three brothers in 1879, It’s still a working cattle ranch with cabins, a chef’s menu, and acres for horseback riding.
Airbnb– Stay with a local at one of the area rental properties. Use this link and get a discount off your first stay.
Sheridan / Big Horn Mountains KOA Journey– This is just one of the options in terms of campsites and RVs in the area. But you can expect all the bells and whistles like WiFi, showers, and a store.
My trip to Sheridan, Wyoming was self-financed, but some of the activities, meals, and accommodations were included with the conference I attended.