Fremont I-70 Site

Round Trip Distance: 0.1 miles
Difficulty: Easy
Elevation: 7379 - 7420 feet
Cellphone: 0-3 bars
Time: 30 mins.
Trailhead: I-70 MM 85.3
Fee: none
Attractions: cliff dwelling, pictographs

Multiple Fremont sites can be found along Interstate 70 beginning as you head west, after crossing into Sevier County, and begin climbing Emigrant Pass, and continuing west to Fremont Indian State Park. On the north side of the westbound lanes near mile marker 85.3 are the remnants of a small cliff dwelling that are tucked away beneath an overhang in the cliff. There are a few pictographs beneath the overhang as well as a few others nearby along the same cliff.

We parked along the side of the interstate, well off the pavement, where we had to cross the fence and the creek to get to the ruins. Our vehicle drew the attention of a highway patrolman that stopped, I suppose, to see if anyone was around or whether the vehicle had been abandoned. An alternative to parking beside the interstate would be to pull off at Exit 86 and walk the mile and a half or so along the creek where a person might actually find other things of interest in the way of pictographs and such.

Once in the general area the site is easy to spot. It has a fence around it to keep cattle and other animals out. Some of the pictographs can also be see from the road shoulder but just enough to make you want to get a closer look. Unfortunately most of the pictographs don't look much better once you do get closer except for 2 that can't be seen from the pavement.

After the spring runoff the creek should only be a few inches deep and narrow enough to jump across.

Fragments of walls can still be seen beneath the overhang.

In this photo you can see how the walls were built from stacking rocks and then plastered over with a sort of cement.

Most of the pictographs are either extremely weathered or have peeled off the rock. This one makes you sad you didn't get to see it when it was still complete.

There are a couple of circles hiding in a crevice that are worth taking note of. Protected from the elements they have stood up much better.

Both of the circles have an image within their borders that looks more Barrier Canyon in style than Fremont. Maybe something transitional.

There's not much room to get a camera into the crevice. We probably should have tried taking a few photos with something smaller like a cellphone.

Maybe a couple hundred feet to the east are a few other pictographs that include some Barrier Canyon style carrot men figures and a more Fremont looking rainbow and other character with big eyes that is waving with one hand.

After pulling off along the interstate, if you aren't planning to continue west, you still have to drive another 12 miles to Exit 73 before you can legally turn around to head back east. That may be another good reason to just hike along the creek from Exit 86. Another good reason would be that you can also visit the Ivie Creek Pictograph site from Exit 86 while you are in the area. In the past we have driven by this site many, many times always thinking that we would like to stop sometime or other but always being in too much of a hurry. It isn't really a 'must see' type of place but it is interesting none the less and now we won't feel guilty the next time we drive past it. If you would like to see it for yourself then all you have to do is 'Take a hike'.