Population 552. Marbleton is 2.5 hours north of Kemmerer. Although smaller than Kemmerer, Marlbeton (and conjoined town Big Piney) seems less of a boom & bust town and more of a steady slow plateaued stall of a town. Still no decent grocery stores (People seem to prefer to do a one-stop gas, grocery, hot lunch counter, drug store, cigarettes and beer pick up around these parts.), and we were lucky to find the one decent restaurant in town.
This is a picture of Big Piney from 1970 – I can’t tell any difference between this and the Big Piney we visited in 2016.
The three hotels are also well aware of the monopoly they have on the immediate area. Prices are higher than they should be for the bleak facilities offered here. We chose the cheapest motel: The Country Chalet of Big Piney. Barely a two-star establishment. Breakfast consisted of coffee and store-bought Long John donuts (the same Long John’s we noticed sitting on the counter the night before)…
The water has a slimy / hard-water feel to it; hopefully well-water, but more likely oil or fracking infiltration… This hotel has an inherent 1970’s theme. Nothing has been updated since the 70’s. It was awesome the way staying at a friend’s grandmother’s house is awesome – strange and nostalgic and a little smelly, but smells that bring back your childhood, if you’re old enough.
But the owner lady was friendly (Her dog, however, was not aware that this is a motel where strangers come and go frequently, evidently, as demonstrated by the constant, muffled barking from behind the manager’s office/apartment door.), The heat in the room and the shower/sink all worked, so the essentials were at least taken care of.