- Updated: 06 May 2015
President John and First Lady Sandy Stumpf invite you to the 57th Wally Byam Caravan Club International Convention/ Rally “GOOD FRIENDS – GOOD JOURNEYS”.
We are going back to Gillette, Wyoming for the 2014 International Convention/Rally; members who attended the previous Gillette Rally will remember an excellent full hook-up campsite and a great Rally/Conference meeting space at the Gillette Cam-Plex. This beautiful meeting space opened in 2008 and more than met our need for the Rally.
You will also remember a very friendly city with helpful residents; these folks enjoy visitors and take every opportunity to welcome you. If you are coming to Gillette for the first time, you can look forward to this very special area. In this article let’s talk about Gillette and the surrounding area and then about the upcoming great Rally events.
Gillette is a city of approximately 32,000 people with a median age of 30.6 years and is in the northeast area of Wyoming. Gillette is the county seat for Campbell County and was established in 1892 less than two years after Wyoming became a State. It is situated between the Big Horn Mountains to the West, the Black Hills to the East and is in the Powder River Basin.
The major industries in the area are American Coal, Oil and Coal Bed Methane Gas; the city refers to itself as the “Energy Capital of the Nation” and provides nearly 35% of the U.S. coal.
The climate is considered semi-arid with an average high temperature in June–July of 76F/24.4C to 84.5F/29.2C with low temperature in June–July of 47.7F/8.7C to 54.4F/12.3C. The average rainfall in these months is from 2.64 inch - 1.78 inch, 67.1mm - 45.2mm. Looks like pretty good camping weather.
There are a number of very good to excellent hotels available if you wish to fly into the Gillette - Campbell County Airport (GCC) serviced by Delta Airlines, United Airlines operated by SkyWest Airlines. SkyWest currently operates 8 flights daily in and out of Gillette to hubs in Denver, Rock Springs and Salt Lake City.
An excellent selection of restaurants from casual bagels to barbecues and steaks, wine and fine dining are available. Good shopping is available and they have an excellent Farmer’s Market.
Meeting and meal space is available for your various Unit and Region functions.
Everything you need is in Gillette - personal vehicle, RV service, propane – if you need it, you can find it.
OKAY! Enough on Gillette itself for now, let’s take a look around the area for interesting things to do and see and there are many. Take a minute while you are reading this and get out a map of the United States, look at where Gillette, Wyoming is located and then look East-West-North and South. If you were in Gillette last time, you may recognize many of these locations and know you could enjoy another visit or visit those areas you didn’t have time for. If you have not been to this area before just look and you will immediately see this is an opportunity to travel to this interesting area that you should not miss. If you are thinking about a family trip with the children or grandchildren this is the area to visit. This is also a great area for a caravan before or after the Rally or just a trip with your favorite person.
Travel north and you can visit DEVIL’S TOWER NATIONAL MONUMENT, a little further north is CUSTER BATTLEFIELD NATIONAL MONUMENT, go west to YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK - this is a place that should be on every bucket list, if you have not visited this area you cannot imagine what it is to see the impact of this area.
A little south of Yellowstone is GRAND TETON NATIONAL PARK with its beauty and history beyond expectation. Now let’s travel east or maybe stop before arriving at the Rally to do a little “spelunking” in the JEWEL CAVE, MOUNT RUSHMORE CAVE and the WIND CAVE. Once we are back above ground a visit to MOUNT RUSHMORE and CRAZYHORSE is a must, a stop at BAD LANDS NATIONAL PARK is also great. Finally we can travel south to visit FORT LARAMIE NATIONAL HISTORIC SITE, SCOTT’S BLUFF NATIONAL MONUMENT and CHIMNEY ROCK NATIONAL MONUMENT.
All of this and beautiful scenery, I know, because I have visited everyone of these venues and my visits were on the way to or from various WBCCI rallies to attend our annual meeting, to meet new and old friends and to enjoy Fun, Fellowship and Adventure.
In future articles we will review the various Rally events, seminars, tours and more information about Gillette and this very special area.
Please register today for the Rally, support your Club and plan a trip to remember.
Public Relations/Rally Promotions; Hazel Knopp #200, Chairman