Send Us Your Tales of I-80 — CLICK HERE for more Tales of I-80

Everyone who has lived in Wyoming has his or her own tale of weather horror or road warrior mayhem on the 401-mile stretch of Interstate 80 that traverses our state. Is there a driver among you, for example, for whom the name “Elk Mountain” does not evoke an instant shiver and frightening vision of black ice and howling winds?

(WYDOT webcams — click to enlarge)

Now your friendly editors at WyoFile ask you to contribute your most frightening or enlightening story about driving our most notorious and challenging road. Outstanding “Tales of I-80” will be published prominently on our site. Please send stories and, if you have them and wish to share, digital photographs of yourself, your vehicle, the weather you encountered or anything else that represents your story to editor@wyofile.com. If your story is selected for publication by our editors, we will send you your choice of a WyoFile.com souvenir.

As John McPhee wrote in “Rising from the Plains,” the Wyoming portion of I-80, reaching a high point of 8,640 feet between Laramie and Cheyenne, is an engineering miracle and a geological wonderland.

One of the country’s most vital commercial arteries, it is estimated that every hour the highway is closed because of bad weather or accidents costs the American economy an estimated $1 million. Weather challenges include ferocious winds, blinding snow, whiteouts, black ice, gully-washers, and barrages of hail.

(WYDOT photo — click to enlarge)

But it is also a highway where, as on the ancient Asian Silk Road, almost anything can and does happen. The most recent example was the Dec. 19 stabbing 20 miles east of Rock Springs. Incited by some citizens’ band insults, one long-haul trucker stabbed another on the highway shoulder as the victim’s Texas convoy comrades looked on. In the last year I-80 has seen a fatal 50-vehicle accident (March 24), and a naked Utah man commandeering a car and firing off rounds from a 9mm pistol near Wamsutter (June 23).

Now it’s your turn to regale us. Send us your own favorite I-80 anecdote along with your e-mail and return address to editor@wyofile.com. Again, if your story is selected for publication, we’ll send you a WyoFile souvenir. CLICK HERE for more Tales of I-80.

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  1. Words would just be frosting at this point. The Wy-DOT photo of the jacknifed semi’s says it all…