PointofInterestRoadSigns.com - Tree Rock Sign

 

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 Welcome to Point of Interest Road Signs! A collection of photos of road and trail signs.  Click here for more Wyoming Signs

 

Tree Rock

 

Location of sign -  Located in the median of Interstate 80 between Cheyenne and Laramie.

 

Photo taken July 2007

Tree Rock Sign

Photo courtesy of Jimmy Wayne

 

Text of sign:

 

This small pine tree that seems to be growing out of solid rock has fascinated travelers since the first train rolled past on the Union 

Pacific Railroad. It is said that the builders of the original railroad diverted the tracks slightly to pass by the tree as they laid rails 

across Sherman Mountain in 1867-69. It is also said that trains stopped here while locomotive firemen 'gave the tree a drink' from 

their water buckets. The railroad moved several miles to the south in 1901 and the abandoned grade became a wagon road.

 

In 1913 the Lincoln Highway Association was formed 'To procure the establishment of a continuous improved highway from the 

Atlantic to the Pacific.' The Lincoln Highway was an instant success in a nation enamored with the newfangled automobiles and 

eager for a place to drive them. The Lincoln passed right by Tree Rock as did U. S. 30 in the 1920s and Interstate 80 in the 1960s.

At this place the road was approaching the 8,835-foot Sherman Summit, the highest point on the Lincoln. The view of the 

surrounding mountains was like nothing that west-bound easterners had ever seen. Still, they noticed the little tree, which became 

the favored subject of many early postcards and photographs. It still is. 

 

The tree is a somewhat stunted and twisted limber pine (Pinus flexilis), a type of tree commonly found in this area where ponderosa 

and limber pines dominate the landscape. The age of the tree is unknown, although limber pines can live as long as 2,000 years. The

tree grows out of a crack in a boulder of Precambrian era pink Sherman granite formed more than 1-4 billion years ago.

 

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