In the serene landscape of Fort Washakie, nestled against the stunning backdrop of the Wind River Mountains, lies a remarkable initiative blending cultural experience, relaxation, and community support – the Wind River Basin Campground.
Situated on the Wind River Reservation, the property presents a unique glamping experience, inviting guests to stay in one of its traditional tipis, all while being immersed in the rich heritage of the area.
Each tipi sits on a platform off the ground and houses at least one bed. Traditional tipis can accommodate 2-4 people, while the circle tent tipi can sleep up to 8 people.
This innovative campground is the brainchild of Jerry Warren and Jorden Giddings. Warren, a proud member of the Northern Arapaho Tribe and of Eastern Shoshone descent, and Giddings, an enrolled member of the Cowlitz Tribe also of Eastern Shoshone lineage, bring their rich business acumen to this venture.
Their established footprints in Fremont County include Warren’s J.A.C.E. Water Service, a business he’s been running for over two decades, and Giddings’ Salon 10, celebrating its fifth successful year in operation.
A pivotal member of the operation, Erika Yarber, elucidated the campground’s broader vision beyond providing a unique travel experience.
Yarber expressed that the endeavor aims to contribute to economic development and foster an entrepreneurial spirit within the reservation and the broader community.
“We just want to inspire everybody that wants to open a business or has questions or that has a good idea,” Yarber said. “We really, truly want to encourage entrepreneurship.”
The campground is committed to respectful cultural representation, with Yarber asserting, “We are not selling our culture,” Yarber explained.
“We are not selling our ceremonies and things like that. We want to welcome people. We want to educate people properly. We want to give them the opportunity to feel welcome coming in.”
Besides the unique lodging, the Wind River Basin Campground also boasts proximity to local attractions. It’s conveniently located within a short stroll to Hines General Store, a brief 1.7-mile jaunt to the Fort Washakie Powwow Grounds, and a 5.9-mile drive to the Ethete Powwow Grounds, providing guests ample opportunity to explore and learn about the region.
For more information, visit https://wrbcampground.lodgify.com/.
Featured image from Wind River Basin Campground.