From Meadowlark Lake down to the red ridged foothills outside Ten Sleep, US Highway 16 or The Sweet 16 takes you through the awe-inspiring Tensleep Canyon. Extreme Sportsmen and women are finding this unspoiled beauty while rock climbing, caving, hiking, or mountain biking. The cliffs take on a life of their own with shapes and faces carved out by millions of years of wind and water, with the trees and plants filling in the detail. A trip up or down the old highway is a special treat, but make sure you have time and a vehicle that can handle it.
Beyond the Powder River Pass, The Sweet 16 winds past the all-season recreation area at Meadowlark Lake and descends into the head of Tensleep Canyon and down to the red ridged foothills outside Ten Sleep. Awe-inspiring limestone and dolomite rock walls etched and pitted by time reach ever further skyward and make Tensleep Canyon a must-see drive part of The Sweet 16. Hikers and bikers can find plenty of trails and some of Wyoming’s best mountain climbing attracts climbers from all over the country.
Near the mouth of the Tensleep Canyon, be sure and visit the trout hatchery and fish rearing station operated by the Wyoming Game and Fish Department.
While Tensleep Canyon offers beautiful scenery and great opportunities for rock climbers worldwide, the drive through the canyon still offers a more enjoyable route for the driver than other ways over the Bighorn Mountains. With less steep grades, more gradual turns, and plenty of opportunities for pullouts and scenic vistas, visitors can enjoy the sightseeing on their trip through Bighorn Mountain Country.