Terrorist-suspect for 3 hours

Trip Start Jun 15, 2013
Trip End Ongoing

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Where I stayed
Dubois / Wind River KOA Campground

Flag of United States  , Wyoming
Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Those of you who persevered and got to the end of my photos in the previous blog will have noticed one of the Sinclair oil refinery.  When I got out of the Medicine Bow Mountains on Sunday, I headed west along I-80 and looked for a place with WiFi, so I could update the travelblog.  I spotted a huge oil refinery in Sinclair and decided to get off the interstate and go into town.  There wasn't much there, definitely no restaurant with WiFi, so I drove past the refinery, at the same time both hideous and fascinating, and took some photographs in front of the main gate.  I then got back on I-80, drove into Rawlins, and, as usual, McDonald's provided both WiFi and a Big Mac menu.  Leslie had mentioned that Seminoe State Park had fine scenery, so I decided to go there and put up my tent.  But I would have to go back east on I-80 to Sinclair and head north 36 miles to get to the park.  And so I did. 
There were hardly any cars, the landscape was barren with no buildings.  Suddenly a sheriff's car approached from behind.  It stayed behind me the next ten miles.  My cruise control was set at the speed limit, 50 mph, my headlights were on (this seems to be a requirement in some states), so he couldn't nail me for either.  He did not flash his red and blue top lights, so I didn't stop, of course.  (Rita and I will recall, when a state trooper stopped us (i.e., me) in Tennessee, he clearly flashed his lights.)  It was beginning to get eerie.  I was driving with the top down, but suddenly the wind picked up, and my Casper newspaper started flying in all directions.  Raindrops started to fall.  I decided to pull over and take the top up.  The cop drove up next to me but stayed in his car.  He then asked:  'Have you been in Sinclair today?'  I said no.  'Strange', he said, 'because they had received a report that a car just like mine had been there and taken photos of the refinery.'  It then dawned on me, that I had indeed been in Sinclair and taken photos.  Over the din of the engines and the wind I thought he had said 'St. Claire' or similar.  I immediately admitted that I had been in Sinclair and taken photographs adding that I was from Denmark, and that we don't have refineries like that there.  He said that with all the terrorist activities these days you have to be careful.  I believe he immediately determined that I didn't look like the typical Arab terrorist out on a mission to blow up the Sinclair oil refinery.  I had noticed a disproportionately big police station in Sinclair (the town only has 4-500 inhabitants).  Afterwards I started thinking about the enormous resource this nation has to allocate to prevent new terrorist attacks from Arab jihadists.
Up at Seminoe I chose a top spot with a fine view of the lake and started my usual campfire.  Suddenly a young boy came over to me with a plate in his hand and said that his mother had told him to give it to me.  It was a delicious white fish fried in butter.  His dad, not far behind him, said it was 'wally' or something.  While I was eating it, the wind started to blow with almost gale force.  I had to jump into my car to finish the dish.  I was afraid that my tent might blow away but I had fortunately secured it well with the spikes.  As you all know it lies close to the ground.  If it had been one of the more common square shapes, the wind would undoubtedly had taken it away.
Next morning the wind had subsided.  I walked over to Amy (we had briefly talked to each other, when I came in the night before) to thank her and her husband for the delicious fish.  It's called 'walleye,' and they fish a couple of hundreds a year and freeze them.  They live in Rock Springs.  
The next day I wanted to continue in a northwesterly direction towards the Grand Teton and Yellowstone.  Instead of going all the way back to I-80, then to Rawlins and up 287 to Muddy Gap Junction, I found out that a dirt road would take me to Alcova on 220.  It was a stretch of 35 miles, which I drove at 20 mph but I still got pretty dusty.  It was a great drive with many fine views.
(Story to be continued tomorrow.)     

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Vivian on

Wow! Love the scenery! but would be apprehensive out in the "boonies" !. Thanks for posting all your photos.
God bless ! Have a GRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRT trip!

Marilyn Lee on

Gee, you have a new title to add to your resume, Suspect in Sinclair! Never has a Dane spent this much time in Wyoming, you may be on the state sheriff's watch list :)

P Tanzy Maxfield on

Interesting. I have loved the forest service and county roads. However, I'm in a truck with pop-up camper. Glad you took the risk.

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