No one knows exactly how the Seminoe Mountains got their name. One account says it is an Americanized spelling of the name Basil Cimineau Lajeunesse, who guided expeditions along the Platte River in the 1840s. Others say the mountains were named after Basil’s brother Charles, a trader/trapper, nicknamed “Simonot.” No matter which story is true, the Seminoes were the site of an 1868 gold discovery, which led to a subsequent rush, a boom town, and an old Miner’s Route followed by prospectors on their way back from California. That route today is known as the Seminoe/Alcova Scenic Backway, a 64-mile road that winds through some of south-central Wyoming’s most rugged country. Paralleling the North Platte River, the byway passes stark deserts and antelope-grazed prairies, which transform into lush plains and rich sandstone mountains in the blink of an eye. From dusty roads and colorful canyons to the bighorn sheep who drink from the river’s crystal-clear waters, the Seminoe/Alcova Scenic Backway offers an unparalleled journey through Wyoming’s windswept west, and a one-of-a-kind trip.