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Lander Sinks Canyon – Brewer’s Trail Extension Project

The Brewer’s Trail Extension Project was completed on July 15th, 2018.  The newly named “Upper Brewer’s Trail” has been widely praised by users since its opening.  In 2019, we will keep the trail momentum going by holding the Lander Community Trails Charrette, a one-day event that brings community members and land managers together to jointly determine trail maintenance and development priorities for area trails.  We will also be helping the Forest Service add two much-needed bridges to Upper Brewer’s, that will enhance the trail experience even more.

Learn more about the Lander Community Trails Charrette here.

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The Lander Sinks Canyon – Brewer’s Trail Extension Project is one of two major Wyoming Pathway’s public land trail projects underway in 2018. The second big trail project is the Pole Mountain Trails Phase 2 in Laramie.

The Lander project will complete the 5-mile extension of the popular Brewer’s Trail, located in the Sinks Canyon area of the Shoshone National Forest, creating a new and high quality intermediate trail linking Fossil Parking area with Worthen Reservoir trailhead at the Sheep Bridge Trail. The trail features big views of the southern Wind River Mountains and the Frye and Worthen reservoirs as it flows through a mix of forest and meadow terrain.

The total cost of the Brewers Trail is over $100,000. Wyoming Pathways led a successful fundraising campaign that secured grants from the Laura Jane Musser Fund, National Forest Foundation, Lander Chamber/Travel Board, plus contributions from Lander Cycling Club and Wyoming Pathways.

Community leaders agree this is a solid investment in the future. Lander’s Sinks Canyon area is a vital front-country public land gem for outdoor recreation needs, serving the active and growing communities of Lander, Riverton, and Fremont County. In addition, the public lands near Lander are increasingly a travel and tourism destination and an important economic generator for the local communities and State of Wyoming.

The Shoshone National Forest determined there is a need to improve the front country trail system in Sinks Canyon to better serve forest visitors’ recreation needs, and entered into a cooperative agreement with Wyoming Pathways to build the trails. The Brewers Extension is designed as a nonmotorized trail for people on mountain bikes, hiking, running, and on horses. The Lander Cycling Club is contributing to the project and organizing volunteer days to lend a hand, and they have pledged to adopt the trail maintenance into the future.

Wyoming Pathways contracted with Pathfinder Trail Building, a professional trail building firm, to lead the trail development, along with assistance from the South Zone Forest Service trail crew, Wyoming Conservation Corps and local volunteers. Pathfinder builds great trails with quality, sustainability, and user experience in mind. Although the trail was constructed with a small machine, use of hand finish work creates a beautiful natural looking trail that will be fun and sustainable.

The construction started mid-June and is anticipated to be completed mid-July. Please respect that the trail is still closed while work is underway. The Forest Service will inspect the trail soon to see what sections can be opened, and a public announcement will be forthcoming with details. 

Project Summary:

Location: Sinks Canyon – Shoshone National Forest Washakie Ranger District

Project Partners: Wyoming Pathways, the Shoshone National Forest, Lander Cycling Club, University of Wyoming/Wyoming Conservation Corps (WCC), and Pathfinder Trail Building.

Project Financial Support: Laura Jane Musser Fund, National Forest Foundation, Lander Chamber of Commerce/Travel Board, US Forest Service, Wyoming Pathways, Lander Cycling Club

Project Consultant: Adam Buck – Trail Source

Project Description: Complete a 5-mile extension of the popular Brewer’s Trail in Sinks Canyon, located in the Shoshone National Forest Washakie Ranger District. The trail had been approved by the USFS, but there were no federal resources to actually build the trail. Wyoming Pathways worked with the USFS and Lander Cycling to secure grants to help complete the extension. The project, which would connect multiple trails, will provide additional options for trail users and improve the overall trail system in Sinks Canyon. The new trail is also expected to provide economic benefit to the Lander community, by providing additional outdoor recreation opportunities.

Wyoming Pathways Role: Overall project leader; secure project funding, hire a professional trail building firm, contract with the Wyoming Conservation Corps, provide project management, and act as partner liaison.

Next Actions: Continue trail work with trail builder and community resources, with a goal of completing the trail by the end of the project. Trail work began in mid-June 2018.

More Info: Please check back for updates.

July 15, 2018 Update:

It’s a wrap! The Brewer’s Trail Extension Project is complete and there is a sweet new section of trail in Sinks Canyon, near Lander. This past Saturday, our Executive Director, Tim Young did the final walkthrough of the new trail section with the USFS, the trail consultant, Adam Buck and Lander Cycling representatives. Reports are that the FS was thrilled with the quality of the trail and how quickly the project was completed. Over 19,000 feet of new trail, including some pretty challenging rock sections, completed in just a few weeks.

The trail is now open and we couldn’t be happier with the end result. The Brewer’s Extension is a great addition to the trail system in Sinks Canyon. It improves trail connectivity, provides new opportunities for recreation and will help distribute usage over the entire system. Thanks to our project partners, Lander Cycling and the USFS, our trail consultant, Adam Buck and our financial supporters, the National Forest Foundation, the Musser Family Foundation and the Lander Chamber of Commerce. This is another big win for trail development in Wyomng!

June 29, 2018 Update: New photos from the latest trail walk-through with Tim and the USFS staff.

June 21, 2018 Update: New “before and after” flowing trail image from trail consultant Adam Buck:

June 20, 2018 Update: First trail image from trail consultant Adam Buck:

June 16, 2018 Update: Initial Walk-through with USFS and Lander Cycling:


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