With 7,700 permanent residents (and many more during the summer months), Lander lies in the valley of the Popo Agie River on the southeastern edge of the majestic Wind River Mountain Range. With a vibrant Main Street that caters to Western fashions, artistic tastes, and outdoor adventure, not to mention Pioneer Days Rodeo—a tradition since 1894—during a famously boisterous July 4 holiday, Lander is unique. National Geographic named it one of the premier “Adventure Towns” in America, and Men’s Journal ranked it among the “Coolest Mountain Towns” in the country.
Mention “Wyoming” and some people imagine remote, one-horse towns with a single saloon and a post office doubling as a bank. There are still places like that in the Old West, but Lander isn’t one of them. Some residents used to describe Lander as “a college town without a college.” We are glad to have resolved the dilemma. When students get off campus, there are opportunities for outdoor recreation, cultural activities, sports, dining, and much more. As the seat of Fremont County (a county almost 10,000 square miles in extent—about the size of the state of New Hampshire!), Lander employs a large number of county officials. It is famous as the international headquarters of the National Outdoor Leadership School, which operates out of three sizeable buildings in town, including the historic Noble Hotel. Major employers include the Wyoming Life Resource School, Lander Regional Hospital, the Fremont Motor Company, and Eagle Bronze, one of America’s foremost foundries. The capacious county library is located here, and the Museum of the American West features a Pioneer Museum providing unique insight into the American past.