You are here: Geography > States of the US > Wyoming


A map of WyomingWyoming is a state in the western region of the United States. The western two-thirds of the state is dominated by the foothills and ranges of the Rocky Mountains. In southwestern Wyoming, the arid Great Divide Basin lies across the Continental Divide (westward-bound travellers along the Oregon Trail in the 1840s took the South Pass just to the north of the Basin.) Wyoming has two national parks: Grand Teton, which includes the highest peaks of the Teton Range, and Yellowstone, which takes up the northwestern corner of the state. Eastern Wyoming forms part of the Great Plains, a high tableland once covered with prairie grasses and sagebrush. Today, farms and ranches occupy this region.

Grand Teton
Devil's Tower. Rising 2844 ft (867 m) from base to summit, the Devil's Tower is known by geologists as an igneous...Read More >>Devil's Tower. Rising 2844 ft (867 m) from base to summit, the Devil's Tower is known by geologists as an igneous intrusion—possibly an ancient volcanic plug. As the magma cooled underground, hexagonal columns formed. Millions of years later the tower of resistant rock became exposed after the softer sedimentary rocks surrounding it eroded away.


Wyoming received its name from the US Congress when Wyoming Territory came into existence in 1868. It was named after the Wyoming Valley in Pennsylvania, made famous by the Battle of Wyoming (1778) during the Revolutionary War, when British troops and their Iroquois allies inflicted defeat on the American Patriots. Why the name was given to the distant western territory remains a mystery. The name Wyoming originally came from the Native American Munsee Delaware word chwewamink, meaning "at the big river flat”.

Together with Colorado and Utah, Wyoming is one of only three states to have borders running along only straight lines of latitude and longitude, rather than being defined by natural features, such as rivers or mountain ranges.

Q-files now has new sections specially written for younger readers. They are: Living world, Earth, Science, Human body, Prehistoric life, Space, History, Geography and Technology.

Find the answer