State Bridge Site

Rating: 
Round Trip Distance: 0.3 miles
Difficulty: Easy
Elevation: 5750 - 5799 feet
Cellphone: 0-3 bars
Time: 30 mins.
Trailhead: State Bridge Draw
Fee: none
Attractions: Fremont petroglyphs




The State Bridge Site is located in the Canyon Pintado National Historic District south of the town of Rangely, Colorado. State Bridge has some intriguing Fremont style petroglyphs that although faded and relatively few in number are still very interesting.


The trailhead is located along Highway 139 between mile markers 59 and 60 and about 12 miles from its junction with Highway 64 on the eastern outskirts of the town of Rangely.


Cross the road from the parking area and follow the graveled path that leads to the point of cliff just a short distance away.


It is always nice when someone goes through the trouble to officially recognize a site and put up signs to remind visitors that it is illegal to vandalize the sites in anyway or to dig for or remove artifacts.


The only elevation gain along the trail is where it crosses the shoulder of a small ridge.


The BLM has constructed a nice viewing area below the panel of petroglyphs. A pair of binoculars and a zoom lens might come in handy to get a good look from this vantage point.


A kiosk at the viewing platform provides some interesting details about rock art in general. It is amazing what you can learn just from reading all of the kiosks in Canyon Pintado.


We outlined most of the images in this panel on the computer to make them stand out in the photo. Some of them are so faded that even on the computer they were hard to make out. There appears to be a slanted kokopelli figure in the top middle of the picture. The creator of the panel seemed also to use the natural features of the cliff as abstract parts of a couple of the images.


This is the main Fremont style character of the panel. Note the necklace, big round eyes, and a bird perched on its left shoulder. The top of the head may have been intended to be a lot flatter than what we made it out to be.


These images on a nearby face of the cliff are very, very faded and somewhat unique. The head of the figure on the right seemed to be using a natural feature of the rock but that may not have been the case.


Here is a spiral that tails off to touch an edge in the rock.


Some of the petroglyphs at the State Bridge site look slightly different under different lighting conditions even when viewed on the computer. Someone with more time on their hands could probably do a much better job of enhancing them than what we did in the few minutes that we had to spend on it. For those that have an interest in such things, or for those that just like visiting rock art sites, we have at least given you a little idea of what you will find at State Bridge. If you would like to see it for yourself then all you have to do is 'Take a hike'.