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Casper, Wyoming - Mountains, Meth & The Cowboy Mentality

My cousin has lived in Casper, Wyoming for most of her adult life. Since we are very close I have visited many, many times and have a good feel for the area. I have a unique prospective, as I have access to the city as both a visitor and an insider. As a visitor, the first thing I will tell you is that the views are beautiful, at least from the perspective of an out-of-stater. While there are more spectacular mountains in other parts of Wyoming, Casper Mountain is quite scenic. The city was named after the old Fort Caspar, which is now a nearby tourist attraction. The town lives up to Wyoming's unofficial slogan, "Forever West", with bona fide cowboys and cattle ranches throughout town. Talk candidly to any local and two things are likely to be mentioned: the wind and the meth situation. Casper is one windy city! While it's not quite as bad as nearby Cody, the wind is definitely worth mentioning as it blows over 40mph several times a week. Meth is quite a problem in Casper. While recently the Meth Watch Program and the Meth and Substance Abuse Conferences have helped somewhat to alleviate the situation, Casper is still considered the methamphetamine capital of Wyoming by some of its residents. There is plenty of employment to be had in Casper. Education here is above average and the schools are excellent; Dick Cheney was a graduate of Natrona County High School which is located in Casper. Housing, however, is expensive and until recently was hard to come by. Like most of the country, the economy has changed that somewhat, but it's still not the easiest place to find affordable and acceptable housing. Overall, I enjoy visiting Casper and travel there as often as I can. I highly suggest grabbing breakfast at Eggington's Restaurant on East 2nd Street if you get the chance, as the food is stellar (the French Toast is addictive, it's the best I have eaten anywhere in the country).
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