FORT BRIDGER — Fort Bridger’s position on the Oregon Trail brought, most likely, a once-in-a-lifetime experience to Bridger Valley as the Capitol Christmas Tree stopped for a short time in Fort Bridger.
The tree, provided by the state of Oregon from the Willamette National Forest, is following the Oregon Trail in reverse as the massive tree is hauled by semi to the nation’s capitol.
The tree was late pulling into Fort Bridger and didn’t arrive until about 8:45 Saturday morning, Nov. 17 but didn't arrive until Saturday morning. The late arrival didn’t put a damper on the crowd, estimated at 200, to see the tree and take part in the event.
And as the song says, “I’m dreaming of a white Christmas,” the sky cooperated, and a gentle snowfall blanketed the area, with temperatures hovering around 24. As the morning progressed, the snow got heavier and heavier until after the semi pulled out headed east out of Fort Bridger to reconnect to I-80. Then the snow stopped. Next projected stop was the Frontier prison in Laramie. Fort Bridger and Laramie were the only two stops slated for Wyoming.
According to Nikki Swanson, U.S. Forest Ranger from Willamette, the journey started on Nov. 9, departing from Sweet Home, Ore.; of the Willamette National Forest. The the tree left Oregon on Nov. 15, and is to arrive at the Capitol and be lit on Dec. 9.