According to Ablogtophone, US 26 is a US Highway in the US state of Wyoming. The road forms a long east-west route through the center of the state, from the Idaho border at Alpine, through Grand Teton National Park further east, via Riverton and Casper to the Nebraska border at Torrington. The road is double numbered with other US Highways for significant distances. The road is 761 kilometers long.
US 26 in the middle of Wyoming.
Near the village of Alpine, US 26 in Idaho enters the state of Wyoming from Idaho Falls. Already after 3 kilometers a double numbering starts with the US 89. Both roads then head east through a mountainous area along the Snake River. At the hamlet of Hoback Junction US 189 ends from Evanston and a triple numbering begins with US 191from Rock Springs. The road runs here at an altitude of about 1,800 meters and runs due north. One passes through the small town of Jackson, the largest town in the wider region, and then enters Grand Teton National Park. From the road you have a magnificent view over the Tetons. The highest point is the Grand Teton with an altitude of 4,197 meters. At the hamlet of Moran, US 26 turns east and begins double – numbering with US 287. The road then ascends to the 2,944 meter high Togwotee Pass. It crosses the Continental Divide, the watershed between the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans. Then the descent to the central Wyoming plateau begins. The area changes from a wooded mountain area to a barren and desolate plateau with few major differences in height.
The double-numbering with US 287 is about 160 kilometers long and lasts until an intersection near Morton, where US 287 exits towards Lander and Rawlins in the southeast. The area is not really flat, there are continuous ravines and cliffs up to 100 meters high. One then reaches the town of Riverton in Central Wyoming. The road turns northeast here and after about 35 kilometers you reach the village of Shoshoni, where a double numbering begins with US 20.
The road then runs over a desolate barren plateau with few major differences in height. Places on the route are often no more than a few houses, sometimes not even inhabited. You pass Hells Half Acre, a wild area with jagged rocks. One then reaches the town of Casper, with 50,000 inhabitants the second largest city in Wyoming. US 26 merges into Interstate 25 here. Although I-25 is a north-south number, the road here runs east-west for 100 kilometers. Crossing the North Platte River here, US 20 and US 26 turn off again to form a parallel route a short distance from I-25. This lasts until Glenrock, after which both numbers merge onto I-25, after which a double numbering to the east of 4 road numbers, I-25, US 20, US 26 and US 87. Just past Douglas, at Orin the US 20 turns to the East.
US 26 continues a little further with I-25 to the south, to the west are the higher Laramie Mountains. There are some exits that lead to hamlets. After about 55 miles, US 26 turns east and continues on I-25 toward Cheyenne and Denver. The road then continues across the High Plains and crosses the North Platte River. Near Torrington there is a short double numbering with US 85 and even 2×2 lanes. Not far after that, the border with Nebraska is reached, after which US 26 in Nebraska continues towards Scottsbluff.
US 20/26 at Casper.
US 26 is one of the original US Highways of 1926. Its starting point was US 185 at Dwyer Junction, just west of Guernsey. With that, US 26 ran about 90 kilometers through the extreme east of Wyoming. This section of US 26 coincides with the historic Oregon Trail, which migrants used to reach the west of the continent in the 1800s. Between 1948 and 1952, US 26 was extended westward in stages, eventually reaching the Pacific Ocean in Oregon. In 1948 the route to Alpine on the border with Idaho. wasextended and continued to Idaho Falls in 1951, creating the current route through Wyoming. US 26 was routed over US 20 for a large part, as were other US Highways in western Wyoming. Between Shoshoni and Riverton, US 26 was routed over the then US 320, which became part of US 26 in 1950 and was discontinued.
Relatively few upgrades have been made to US 26, the road leads through almost every place on the route. An exception is Casper, the largest city on US 26’s route in Wyoming, where a 2×2 lane northbound bypass was constructed at the same time as I-25 was built, serving US 20 and US 26. In the 1990s, the double numbering with US 85 west of Torrington was also widened to a 5-lane road with a center turn lane.
In 1991, the easternmost section between the Nebraska border and I-25 was designated as a branch of the Heartland Expressway from Scottsbluff to I-25.
Every day, 1,800 vehicles drive on the Idaho border and 6,000 vehicles on the double-numbered US 89, increasing to 12,000 vehicles near Jackson and a maximum of 20,000 vehicles in Jackson itself. This again drops to 5,000 vehicles north of Jackson and 1,000 to 1,500 vehicles over the Togwotee Pass. After that, 2,000 vehicles will travel to Riverton and 4,000 vehicles between Riverton and Shoshoni. Then 2,000 vehicles drive up to Casper and 1,700 vehicles parallel I-25 west of Glenrock. Between I-25 and Guernsey, 2,200 vehicles and 3,500 vehicles run between Guernsey and Torrington, rising to 12,000 vehicles in Torrington itself.