Interstate 80 Westbound - Uinta County


Interstate 80 Westbound
Westbound Interstate 80 leaves Sweetwater County and enters Uinta County, the southwesternmost county in the Equality State. Photo taken 09/07/05.

The next exit along westbound Interstate 80 is Exit 53, Church Butte Road, which offers a connection to the site of Church Butte to the south of the freeway. To the north, Church Butte Road leads to the actual Church Butte geological formation and Church Butte Station on the Union Pacific Railroad. At Granger, the railroad split just as Interstate 80 and U.S. 30 split: one branch of the railroad leads to Salt Lake City via Ogden, while the other turns northwest toward Idaho. Photo taken 09/07/05.
Westbound Interstate 80 reaches Exit 53, Church Butte Road. No services are available at this interchange. Photo taken 09/07/05.
A sign goof that has existed since at least 1990, Interstate 80 is cosigned with U.S. 30 after the Church Butte Road interchange. Interstate 80 should not be signed with U.S. 30, since U.S. 30 departed at Exit 66. This is a rare example of overzealous signage. Photo taken 09/07/05.
Through this stretch, the twin carriageways of Interstate 80 split in half to avoid the badlands. Photo taken 09/07/05.
This large diagrammatical sign provides a simplified map of the Lyman, Urie, Carter, and Fort Bridger area. The intent of the sign is to advise motorists to use Business Loop I-80 for connections to these small agricultural communities and use Interstate 80 for connections to specific state highways. The map is not very easy to read at high speed, but a replica of it is posted in the nearby parking areas for those who wish to study it further. Photo taken 09/07/05.
The next exit along westbound Interstate 80 is Exit 48, Junction Business Loop I-80 (former U.S. 30S) west to Lyman and Uinta County Route 237 north to Granger Road. Granger Road is the original route of U.S. 30S northeast past Church Butte; upon reaching Sweetwater County, it changes into Sweetwater County Route 2/Old Little America Road before meeting U.S. 30 at Granger. Photo taken 09/07/05.
A parking area is located just prior to Exit 48. A replica of the Bridger Valley map shown above is also presented at the parking area, thus allowing motorists to stop and review their options. A rest area is located at the Wyoming 413 interchange (Exit 41). Photo taken 09/07/05.
Westbound Interstate 80 reaches Exit 48, Junction Business Loop I-80 west to the Bridger Valley. The business route travels west into the Blacks Fork River valley, which features the first irrigated agricultural land since leaving eastern Wyoming. The Bridger Valley generally refers to area surrounding the towns of Lyman, Urie, and Mountain View. The valley rests at an elevation of around 6,675 feet. Photo taken 09/07/05.
A neutered Interstate 80 shield is posted after the Business Loop I-80/Bridger Valley interchange. While the business loop follows the Lincoln Highway, Interstate 80 bypasses the towns to the north. Photo taken 09/07/05.
A mileage sign provides the distance to Lyman (eight miles) and Fort Bridge (15 miles). At Fort Bridger, the business loop merges back onto Interstate 80 (Exit 34). The Bridger Valley business loop is the longest business loop in the state. Photo taken 09/07/05.
Wyoming is beef country, and this sign located on a ranch reminds motorists of that as they pass through the Bridger Valley. Photo taken 09/07/05.
For a second time, Interstate 80 west passes over the Blacks Fork River. The river flows northeast toward Granger, then flows south toward the Flaming Gorge Reservoir. Photo taken 09/07/05.
Use Exit 38, Junction Business Loop I-80 east to reach Fort Bridge State Historic Site, which features an archaeological site and a replica of what the trading post looked like during frontier days. Photo taken 09/07/05.
A third map is posted on this guide sign (the first was located east of Exit 48, and the second was at the parking area/map stop) to provide directions to the towns of Bridger Valley. Photo taken 09/07/05.
The next exit along westbound is Exit 41, Wyoming 413 south to the town of Lyman. Lyman home to 1,938 residents as of the 2000 Census. Follow Wyoming 413 south to the town; the state route ends at Business Loop I-80 (Clark Street to the east and Main Street to the south). Photo taken 09/07/05.
A rest area is located at Exit 41; the next rest area is the Bear River Rest Area/Welcome Center at Exit 6 (36 miles west of here). Photo taken 09/07/05.
Westbound Interstate 80 reaches Exit 41, Wyoming 413 south to Lyman and the rest area. Photo taken 09/07/05.
An Interstate 80 reassurance shield is posted after Exit 41. Photo taken 09/07/05.
The next exit along westbound is Exit 39, Wyoming 412 north to Carter and Wyoming 414 south to Urie, Mountain View, McKinnon, and Manila, Utah. Wyoming 412 travels northwest to meet U.S. 189 south of Kemmerer, and Wyoming 414 connects with Business Loop I-80 in Urie and Wyoming 410 in Mountain View. Use Wyoming 412 north to the Fort Bridger Muncipal Airport. Photo taken 09/07/05.
Westbound Interstate 80 reaches Exit 39, Wyoming 412 north to Carter and Wyoming 414 south to Urie. As of the 2000 Census, tiny Carter had eight residents. To the south, Urie is not even counted individually in the U.S. Census, but Mountain View is home to 1,153 people as of the 2000 Census. Photo taken 09/07/05.
A series of snow fences are lined up on both sides of the freeway after the Wyoming 412 and Wyoming 414 interchange. Photo taken 09/07/05.
The next exit along westbound Interstate 80 is Exit 34, Junction Business Loop I-80 east to Fort Bridger. This interchange marks the western terminus of the long business loop, and Interstate 80 again assumes the alignment of the Lincoln Highway en route to Evanston. Photo taken 09/07/05.
Use Exit 38, Junction Business Loop I-80 east to reach Fort Bridge State Historic Site, which features an archaeological site and a replica of what the trading post looked like during frontier days. It was briefly a fort at varying times during the 1800s. Photo taken 09/07/05.
Westbound Interstate 80 reaches Exit 34, Junction Business Loop I-80 east to Fort Bridger. Photo taken 09/07/05.
The next exit along westbound is Exit 33, Union Road. Union Road provides local ranch and BLM access. Photo taken 09/07/05.
Westbound Interstate 80 reaches Exit 33, Union Road. Photo taken 09/07/05.
This mileage sign provides the distance to Evanston (28 miles) and Salt Lake City (108 miles). Photo taken 09/07/05.
The next exit along westbound is Exit 30, Junction Uinta County Route 202/Bigelow Bench Road west to the sites of Piedmont and Ragan. This is the old alignment of U.S. 30S/Lincoln Highway, and it can be followed west to Exit 10 (Painter Road interchange). Photo taken 09/07/05.
A travel plaza is located on the north side of the Exit 30/Bigelow Bench Road interchange. Photo taken 09/07/05.
This mileage sign again provides the distance to Evanston (25 miles) and Salt Lake City (105 miles). Photo taken 09/07/05.
Continuing west, the next exit is Exit 28, Junction Uinta County Route 207/French Road south. Interstate 80 has been traveling on the Bigelow Bench, a geological formation that separates the Bridger Valley (Blacks Fork River valley) from the Muddy Creek valley near Leroy and Ragan. Photo taken 09/07/05.
Known locally as the "Three Sisters" the next three hills carry Interstate 80 into and out of the Muddy Creek valley, then up and over into Toms Draw, where the freeway meets U.S. 189. The scarring on the hillside to the left (south) of the freeway may be part of the old highway. Photo taken 09/07/05.
At the bottom of Bigelow Bench, Interstate 80 follows the floor of the Muddy Creek valley briefly before ascending again to the second "sister." Photo taken 09/07/05.
The next exit along westbound Interstate 80 is Exit 24, Junction Uinta County Route 141/Leroy Road north to Leroy and south to Piedmont (via Uinta County Route 173/Piedmont Road) and to Dog Spring, where it meets the Old Lincoln Highway: Uinta County Route 180/Evanston Road west and Uinta County Route 202/Bigelow Bench Road east. Photo taken 09/07/05.
Westbound Interstate 80 reaches Exit 24, Junction Uinta County Route 141/Leroy Road. Notice how the road has a very narrow median with guardrails. Watch for speeding vehicles coming downhill behind you. Photo taken 09/07/05.
The next exit along westbound is Exit 23, Bar Hat Road north to Leroy and southwest to Ragan. Photo taken 09/07/05.
Now beginning the ascent, westbound Interstate 80 next approaches Exit 21, Coal Road. Coal Road travels southwest to meet the old highway (which follows Uinta County Route 180/Evanston Road west of Dog Spring. Photo taken 09/07/05.
Now looking down from the hill of second sister, westbound Interstate 80 drops down into Toms Draw. A climbing lane is added on the uphill side. Notably, this road can have chain requirements for all vehicles during inclement weather in winter months. Photo taken 09/07/05.
The next exit along westbound Interstate 80 is Exit 18, U.S. 189 north to Kemmerer, Big Piney, and Jackson. This scenic route is another route north to Yellowstone-Grand Teton National Parks. Due to the lack of signage of U.S. 189 between Evanston and Heber City, Utah, the overlap of U.S. 189 with Interstate 80 west of here for the last 18 miles of the route in Wyoming is superfluous. Hopefully signage for the route will be restored in Utah, but in the absence of that, perhaps U.S. 189 should be truncated to end here rather than be signed all the way to Evanston. Photo taken 09/07/05.
Westbound Interstate 80 reaches Exit 18, U.S. 189 north to Kemmerer, Big Piney, and Jackson. Kemmerer is home to the first ever J.C. Penney department store, which has since expanded nationwide. Known as the "Fossil Fish Capital of the World," Kemmerer is the gateway to Fossil Butte National Monument. It is home to 2,651 people as of the 2000 Census and is the seat of Lincoln County. It is 35 miles from this interchange north to Kemmerer. Photo taken 09/07/05.
At the base of the offramp, turn right to follow northbound U.S. 189 to Kemmerer. North of Kemmerer, U.S. 189 enters Sublette County, where it passes through Big Piney, Marbleton, and Daniel. After merging with U.S. 191, the highway enters the Bridger-Teton National Forest, offering scenic vistas northwest through Bondurant to Hoback Junction. At Hoback Junction, U.S. 189-191 merges with U.S. 26-89, and four routes continue together to Jackson. U.S. 189 ends at the downtown square in Jackson at the intersection of Cache Street and Broadway. U.S. 26-89-191 continue north past the Elk National Refuge into Grand Teton National Park. To the south, old U.S. 189 now follows Uinta County Route 181 south to Uinta County Route 180/Evanston Road/Lincoln Highway. Photo taken 09/07/05.
Interstate 80 Westbound and U.S. 189 Southbound
Continuing west on Interstate 80, U.S. 189 now joins the shared alignment, and they will remain merged into Utah. The combined route is well signed in Wyoming as shown here, but it is not signed at all in Utah. In fact, the guide signs do not reference U.S. 189 at either the Utah 32 or U.S. 40 interchanges. Now the freeway climbs up the third sister. A climbing lane is added on the uphill side. Photo taken 09/07/05.
This mileage sign provides the distance to Evanston (13 miles) and Ogden, Utah, via Interstate 84 (91 miles). Photo taken 09/07/05.
The next exit along westbound is Exit 13, Divide Road. This exit marks the summit of the third sister. Photo taken 09/07/05.
Westbound Interstate 80 and southbound U.S. 189 are again signed after the Divide Road interchange. Photo taken 09/07/05.
Interstate 80 and U.S. 189 wind through some varied terrain, probably the most undulating since the area around Elk Mountain. Photos taken 09/07/05.
The next exit along westbound is Exit 10, Painter Road, which connects to the old alignment of the Lincoln Highway (Junction Uinta County Route 180/Evanston Road east). Photo taken 09/07/05.
Westbound Interstate 80 and southbound U.S. 189 reach Exit 10, Painter Road. The freeway now enters Duncomb Hollow for its final journey into Evanston. Photo taken 09/07/05.
Continuing west, the final state park along westbound Interstate 80 before entering Utah is Bear River State Park. Established in 1991, Bear River State Park offers hiking, biking, picnicking, and related activities. No overnight camping is permitted. Photo taken 09/07/05.
The final three exits along westbound Interstate 80 in Wyoming all serve the city of Evanston: Exit 6, Junction Business Loop I-80 and Business U.S. 189, Bear River Drive; Exit 5, Wyoming 89/Front Street north and Wyoming 150/Mirror Lake Byway south; and Exit 3, Junction Business Loop I-80 and Business U.S. 189, Harrison Drive. Photo taken 09/07/05.
The next exit along westbound Interstate 80 and southbound U.S. 189 is Exit 6, Junction Business Loop I-80 and Business U.S. 189, Bear River Drive west to Evanston and south to Bear River State Park. Evanston was first settled in 1868 during the era when the railroad was being constructed. The population of Evanston was 11,507 as of the 2000 Census, making it one of the cities in Wyoming to increase population since 1990 and making it into the eighth largest city (Cheyenne, Casper, Laramie, Gillette, Rock Springs, Sheridan, and Green River are larger from first to seventh rank). Photo taken 09/07/05.
Evanston is located in the Bear River Valley, after Interstate 80 crossed over the Bear River Divide. The city has several historic and scenic features. Depot Square in historic downtown Evanston contains a Lincoln Highway artifact trailblazer monument. To follow the Lincoln Highway through downtown Evanston, follow Bear River Drive west, Front Street north, 11th Street west, and Harrison Drive southwest. Some of the old buildings found in downtown Evanston include the Union Pacific Depot (1900), Andrew Carnegie Library (1906), I. Kastor's Store (1887), and Hotel Evanston (1912). Most of these buildings are made of brick and are still standing today (as of 2005). A river walk follows the Bear River and is popular with residents and tourists, especially during the warmer months. Photo taken 09/07/05.
A state of Wyoming welcome center and rest area is located south of the freeway on Bear River Drive adjacent to the Bear River State Park. The next rest area is located in Utah at Echo Junction (welcome center). Photo taken 09/07/05.
Westbound Interstate 80 and southbound U.S. 189 reaches Exit 6, Junction Business Loop I-80 and Business U.S. 189 (Bear River Drive) west to Evanston, with a connection to northbound Wyoming 89. Photo taken 09/07/05.
To the south, Wyoming 150 follows the Mirror Lake Scenic Byway from Evanston into Utah. Once in Utah, Utah 150 travels to the High Uinta Mountains, then turns west to end at Utah 32 in Kamas. The entire route is very scenic, and due to the high elevations reached, it is closed during the winter months. Photo taken 09/07/05.
Interstate 80 and U.S. 189 cross over the Bear River. The Bear River flows from the High Uinta Mountains in the Wasatch-Cache National Forest north through Evanston to Bear Lake and thence southwest into the Great Salt Lake. Photo taken 09/07/05.
Here is a reassurance shield for Interstate 80 and U.S. 189 prior to Exit 5, Wyoming 89/Wyoming 150. Between 1926 and 1936, what is now Wyoming 89 was known as Wyoming 65. During this time, the northern terminus of U.S. 89 was in Utah. That changed with the Great Recommissioning of 1936 -- U.S. 89 became a major route, from the Mexican border at Nogales, Arizona, north to the Canadian border near Glacier National Park, Montana. In 1936, AASHTO recommended changing what was then known as the U.S. 87W branch between Moran Junction and Great Falls, Montana, into U.S. 89. However, there was some controversy as to how this new section of U.S. 89 would link to the already existing section of U.S. 89 in central Utah. So the highway planners had to determine exactly what route U.S. 89 would follow between central Utah and Moran Junction. That same year (1936), Wyoming 287 (now U.S. 189) was recommissioned as U.S. 89. (Continued in the next photobox.) Photo taken 09/07/05.
Westbound Interstate 80 and southbound U.S. 189 reaches Exit 5, Wyoming 89 North and Wyoming 150 South. (This section is continued from the previous photobox:) In 1936, U.S. 89 was merged with U.S. 30S through Evanston and Piedmont, then turned north to serve Kemmerer, La Barge, and Big Piney. U.S. 89 merged with U.S. 187 in Daniel Junction, then U.S. 89-187 continued north to Hoback Junction and Jackson. What is now Wyoming 89 became known as Wyoming 91 through the modern route of U.S. 89 Star Valley, perhaps to reflect that road's importance in the state highway grid (91 is the next odd number up the scale from 89). This designation of U.S. 89 over Wyoming 287 was not to last, however. Three years later, in 1939, U.S. 89 was recommissioned to run through Salt Lake City, Ogden, Logan, Bear Lake, and Montpelier. It would now enter Wyoming through Star Valley. The old U.S. 89 routing became the new U.S. 189. At about the same time, Wyoming 89 was commissioned in place of Wyoming 91; it is likely that this renumbering is due to Wyoming being upset at losing most of U.S. 89 to Utah and Idaho. This created two highways numbered 89: U.S. 89 through Utah, Idaho, and Wyoming, and Wyo. 89 along the western border of Wyoming. This has resulted in some motorist confusion between the two routes, especially since they more or less converge near Star Valley. Photo taken 09/07/05.
The final Wyoming exit along westbound Interstate 80 and U.S. 189 is Exit 3, Junction Business Loop I-80 and Business U.S. 189 east to Evanston via Harrison Drive. The old alignment of the Lincoln Highway continues on its own route west of Exit 3 via Wahsatch Road, which crosses the state line into Utah as a service road. Photo taken 09/07/05.
This is the penultimate Interstate 80 and U.S. 189 shield assembly along westbound. Photo taken 09/07/05.
Westbound Interstate 80 and southbound U.S. 189 reaches Exit 3, Junction Business U.S. 189 east to Evanston via Harrison Drive. Exit 3 features the last services until Echo Junction; gas, food, and lodging are all available here. Photo taken 09/07/05.
This is the final reassurance shield assembly that features U.S. 189. The US route simply evaporates after this sign. Photo taken 09/07/05.
Upon entering Utah, U.S. 189 south is no longer cosigned. To continue south on U.S. 189, follow Interstate 80 west to the U.S. 40 interchange (Exit 146). There is no signage for U.S. 189 at Exit 146 except for a construction sign referring to ongoing projects through Provo Canyon between Heber and Provo. Former Alternate U.S. 189 through Kamas is now part of Utah 32, so it is no longer signed as part of U.S. 189. Photo taken 09/07/05.
Interstate 80 leaves the Equality State of Wyoming and enters the Beehive State of Utah. The former port of entry and weigh station at the state line is no longer operated by the state of Utah; a newer port of entry is located closer to the welcome center and Interstate 84 split in Echo, Utah. After passing by the abandoned weigh station, Interstate 80 leaves Wyoming. Photo taken 09/07/05.


Continue west to Coalville, Park City, Salt Lake City Return to Interstate 80 Guide Return to the Wyoming Gateway

Page Updated October 21, 2005.

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