Roadschool Trip Planning: Cheyanne, WY Frontier Days

As a full-time RV family, our roadschool journey took us from the California coast, through the Southwest and up to Colorado where we took an old steam train, the 844, from Denver Union Station to Cheyanne, Wyoming. The adventure of a lifetime (also, quite possibly the longest day ever!)

All passengers were required to board the train by 5:45 am! So we headed down there in the dark with two sleepy, but excited boys. We parked in the designated lot, and took a bus to the train.

roadschool family road trip cheyanne wyoming 844 rodeo frontier days old steam trains
Just as the sun was coming up!

The Coolest Train Ever

It was pretty magnificent. A little background here. Our 5-year-old is a “Railfan” (aka someone completely obsessed with trains) and so we bought him this great documentary on the 844. The boys watched that video about 3,000 times and we promised them the train ride one day. Later, we realized that this was quite a pricey journey and the train only runs one day a year – tickets are awarded on a lottery system.

Well, we got the tickets and we boarded the train. The journey was incredible. All along the way, people were lining up to take pictures of the old steam train making its way to Cheyanne. It was a very cool thing to be a part of.

roadschool family road trip cheyanne wyoming 844 rodeo frontier days old steam trains
Standing in front of the 844

The Journey

The trip was kind of rad. Since we were traveling by train, we took a very scenic route and saw herds of buffalo roaming not far from the train. There was a dining car and a dancing car with a band and a bar. Also, breakfast burritos!

This was definitely more of a scene for the retirees, but the boys thought it was amazing and Sam and I agreed.

roadschool family road trip cheyanne wyoming 844 rodeo frontier days old steam trains
Welcome to Cheyanne!

Frontier Days in Cheyanne

After a few hours on the train, we landed in Cheyanne, Wyoming for Frontier Days and the rodeo! As a California girl, I’d never actually been to a rodeo so it was pretty awesome to witness one of the biggest rodeos in the country – although I’m still unsure how I feel about them in general, it was definitely an experience!

roadschool family road trip cheyanne wyoming 844 rodeo frontier days old steam trains
The rodeo was so cool!

There was also a fair with fun houses and kid rides, which the boys loved! And tons of little pop-up shops that took us back in time to the old Frontier Days.

roadschool family road trip cheyanne wyoming 844 rodeo frontier days old steam trains
The boys loved Frontier Days

Around 4:30, the train was ready to depart and so were we! We had left our house 12 hours ago and were ready to get home!

roadschool family road trip cheyanne wyoming 844 rodeo frontier days old steam trains
Standing in front of an old Frontier Days school house

The Massive, Crazy Delay

Well, about 30 minutes outside of Denver, there was an accident on the tracks! We were stranded there for what felt like for-ev-er. We ended up getting off the train and taking a bus back to our car around 10pm. The kids were exhausted! We finally made it home and it felt like we had been in Cheyanne for decades.

Overall, quite an exciting journey and definitely a once in a lifetime opportunity to travel back in time, to the days of the old steamies and make 5-year-old’s eye light up and dreams come true!

roadschool family road trip cheyanne wyoming 844 rodeo frontier days old steam trains
Such a fun day!

Roadschooling is an amazing adventure and we can’t wait to be full-time RVers again! If you’re planning your roadschool journey, be sure to check out our other trip planning guides through the California coast and Santa Cruz.

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