Adobe Town WSA
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Location: Sweetwater County
Nearest Towns: Wamsutter (25 miles) & Rawlins (80 miles)
BLM Acreage: 82,350 acres
Recommended for Wilderness: 10,920 acres
Access Points & Directions in the Rawlins Field Office: From the northeast - at this time, BLM has not secured access from the northeast due to the checkerboard public/private land pattern.
From the southeast - From Rawlins, take I-80 west 29 miles to State Highway 789-Creston Junction Road. Go south 48.9 miles and turn west on Sandcreek Road-BLM 3318. Travel west 14.7 miles staying on Sandcreek Road-BLM 3318, where at some point, Sandcreek Road turns into Shell Creek Trail Road. At the 3-way intersection with the 700 Government Road-Poison Springs Road and the Shell Creek Trail Road-BLM 3318, proceed to the west on the Shell Creek Trail Road-BLM 3318 for about 7 miles to the intersection with the Cherokee Trail-BLM 3330. Stay on the Shell Creek Trail Road-BLM 3318 and proceed northwest for 3 miles to the intersection with the Adobe Town Road to the north and the Shell Creek Trail Road to the west.
East & north boundary access - The Adobe Town Road provides access to the east and north boundaries of the WSA. The south portion of this road is crowned, ditched and maintained until it aligns with the boundary of the WSA. From the Shell Creek Trail and Adobe Town intersection, go north about 7 miles to a 3-way intersection. Stay to the right (east) and cross Sand Creek; this is a low-water crossing, so pay attention! At the 3-way intersection past Sand creek, stay to the left on the Adobe Town Road-BLM 3333. Proceed northwest on Adobe Town Road-BLM 3319 to the intersection at the north boundary of the WSA. Proceed north on the non-maintained two-track.
South boundary access - The Shell Creek Road provides some access to the south boundary of the WSA. The road not maintained and has some impassable washouts. A high-clearance 4wd vehicle is required.
Primitive & Unconfined Recreation:
The Adobe Town WSA, with its large size and varied topography, contains outstanding opportunities for primitive and unconfined recreation. The majority of the WSA provides opportunities for unconfined freedom of movement due to the open rolling hills and numerous drainages. Opportunities for hiking, backpacking, sightseeing, horseback riding, hunting, nature study, scientific study and photography are available to the visitor. The outstanding scenic quality of this WSA enhances the recreational values.
The Adobe Town WSA is made up of two inventoried units divided by the administrative boundary between the Rawlins and Rock Springs Districts. The study area contains 82,350 acres of BLM-administered land, 3,360 acres of split estate, and 1,280 acres of state land. The maze of badlands, mesas and buttes combine with brilliantly colored rock strata to create spectacular canyon land scenery.
At 85,710 acres in size, Adobe Town WSA is the largest in Wyoming. Within the WSA, you'll find Skull Creek Rim and Monument Valley - names that conjure up images of colorful badlands, buttes and spires created by thousands of years of erosion. Located 80 miles southwest of Rawlins, outstanding opportunities for solitude and primitive and unconfined recreation exist in the WSA. Almost 11,000 acres of this WSA were recommended as suitable for wilderness status in the 1992 report to Congress.
The Adobe Town WSA is predominantly natural with some human imprints. Skull Creek Rim, in the core of the recommended area, is a very colorful and rugged badland area which consists of a series of highly eroded drainages and colorful badland rims. To the north of Skull Creek Rim is Monument Valley and Adobe Town Rim. These areas also contain badlands and formations similar to Skull Creek, but are more dispersed. To the east (the majority of the non-suitable area) is a broad, relatively undisturbed plain that is covered with stabilized sand dunes and alluvium. The man-made intrusions in the WSA include evidence of past oil and gas explorations, several old livestock watering reservoirs and two abandoned wild horse traps.
The Adobe Town WSA contains outstanding opportunities for solitude. The WSA’s rugged badland rims and numerous canyons provide ample opportunities to avoid the sights and sounds of other visitors. The open desert plain, with its expanses of sagebrush and open scenic vistas, projects a feeling of vastness and solitude. Encounters among visitors would be more likely in this portion of the WSA, however, because of the relatively flat terrain.
The WSA is nationally known for the educational and scientific study of paleontological resources. Fossil remains of mammals are numerous and widely distributed throughout the area. Two notable mammalian fossils found in the area are the Uintathere and the Titanothere. The Uintathere was a large mammal about the size and configuration of an African rhinoceros. The species of Titanothere found in the WSA was a tapir-like mammal, about 40 inches in height. This area has been identified as one of the premier sites in North America for paleontological resources.
Significant archaeological resources are found throughout the WSA, representing 12,000 years of continuous occupation by man from Paleo Indian through late Prehistoric periods. The cultural site density of the WSA is estimated to be 30 surface sites per square mile, which is unusually high.