I moved to Wyoming by myself at 17 years old

I moved to Wyoming by myself at 17 years old

Yes, I moved from Alabama to Wyoming while I was still in high school... by myself. Well, kind of, anyway.

It was spring break of my junior year of high school, and I was in Seaside like any other normal kid my age back then, lol. I remember being on the beach and hearing that my brother's friend, Jackson, had an interview with TGR (Teton Gravity Research). I thought that was really strange because I knew they were based out of Jackson Hole. When he came back down to the beach, he told me he planned to move out there that summer and be what you call a "seasonal worker." That really piqued my interest. If you know me, you know this one thing. I love Jackson Hole. Honestly, probably a little too much, but that's okay, I guess. I don't think I picked up my phone quicker to ask my dad if I could move out there with Jackson to Jackson.

My dad surprisingly was not against it, really at all, in fact. He almost encouraged it, and I immediately had my mind set on being in the mountains in a short three months. My mom, on the other hand, like any good mom, had her concerns. But eventually, with some convincing, she was on board. Finding a job out there was the easy part. A five-minute Zoom interview landed me a job at 3 Creek Golf Club and Ranch. It was the nicest golf course I had ever seen, paid $15/hr, and was home to some billionaires. I couldn't have been more excited. Now, finding somewhere to live, on the other hand, was tough.

If you aren't familiar with Jackson Hole, let me make it simple for you. It is a billionaire's playground, and because of that, there is a major housing crisis. Rooms rent for an average of 2k a month, and the average home price is just shy of 2 million. We had a place lined up in Victor, ID, just a "short" 40-minute drive over the Teton Pass to Jackson. But thankfully, just three weeks before we were set to leave, we found an ad on the 22Rents Facebook Page looking for two college-age guys. It was perfect, and only about 2k for the room (Jackson and I split that). The Blair Place apartments were the perfect place haha.

On May 14, 2021, my mom, dad, and I started the 26-hour drive to the wild west. Getting into town was nerve-wracking but also the most excited I had been in my life up to that point. I was getting to live away from home for the first time ever in my favorite place in the world. It couldn't have been better. After a few days, my mom and dad flew home, and man, it was sad. This was the first time they were "leaving" me, and it was the first time I was feeling like a real adult.

I started work a few days after, and it only took a day to settle in. The guys were awesome, and I was just the new kid from Bama. Funny thing, half of them never even knew I was in high school, and they all thought I was 20. I never really wanted to mention I was so young out there by myself, especially when people already thought I was older. The job itself was practically a joke. I cleaned billionaires' golf clubs for 10 hours a day and got free golf in return. I played over 50 rounds that summer; it was pretty epic.

I really can't even fit all of the things I did into a single blog post. There was never a bad day, and I always had something to do. I wrote songs in fields with the Tetons as my backdrop and pretty much spent most nights at the elk refuge watching the sunsets. I summited the Middle Teton and Sleeping Indian. I did a two-day backpacking trip into Cascade Canyon with friends. I floated the Snake River and spent Thursday nights in Victor at Music on Main. There are a thousand stories that I can't wait to tell.

When August rolled around, I was pretty bummed I had to go. My dad was nice enough to fly out and drive my car back to Huntsville. The way the dates worked out, I flew back the Sunday before school started that Monday. I may or may not have cried the day I left. It felt like I was actually leaving MY home, and it was weird. I had some Merry Piglets for lunch then headed to the airport, and that was it. Three months of my life had just flown by in an instant.

Starting school that Monday was a culture shock, to say the least. I was back living with my parents, had a real schedule with a routine, and I didn't have that amazing view anymore. It took some readjusting, but eventually, it was alright. It was always funny to see my friends or a teacher's reaction when I told them I had lived in Wyoming all summer.

To wrap things up, moving to Wyoming that summer was and still is the coolest thing I've done in my life. It taught me how to grow up fast and learn to be an adult quickly. Not only that, but I made some amazing friends along the way and had some amazing memories. I hope that my kids one day get a similar opportunity because it taught me so much. I feel like I learned more about myself and life that summer than I have in college so far. Big shoutout to my parents for letting me do it because it changed my life. Thanks, Mom and Dad! I know everyone thought you were crazy, haha.

Life is one big adventure. So go find something you love to do and do it. Get outside and enjoy creation. And always go Ten more.

Back to blog