Visiting the Fremont Troll of Seattle – Paying the Troll Toll


Fellow Couch Surfer and I atop the Freemont Troll.


Within the hippie capital that is the Emerald city lies the hippie haven known as Fremont. Although a small neighborhood this location boasts some freaky deaky artwork fitting the overall vibe of the area.


One particular piece stands out above the rest, the Fremont Troll. If you're visiting Seattle a stop in Fremont is a must. If in Fremont you should – pay the obligatory troll toll – by visiting this captivating mixed media statue. An experience that I tried to share with as many of my Couch Surfers as possible while hosting them in Seattle.


Standing at 18 feet high and some 40 feet across there are plenty of places to climb, sit and pose for pictures on this concrete oddity. You'll likely find other eager individuals posing for pictures during your visit as this is a popular attraction for tourists, residents of Seattle and little children who love to climb up and run around the sculpture.


Originally unveiled on Halloween of 1990 this location is scene to the Fremont Mobile Trolloween Party and 2011 was no different. I have never attended. This art piece is the collaboration of four artists Steve Badanes,Will Martin, Donna Walter and Ross Whitehead for the Fremont Arts Counsel in an attempt to revitalize the area.


Fremont Troll Crushing VW Bug.  Creative Commons photo from kberberi.


In its left hand the troll grips an old Volkswagen Beatle and gazes off over the adjacent street, as if warily seeking those looking to skip out on said troll, with a shiny hubcap for a left eye. If this statue evokes some deeply repressed childhood fears of a bed time story about goats and trolls than your subconscious is correct. The artists derived inspiration from that old classic Three Billy Goats Gruff. Why not pass this long repressed fear along to your kids with a family visit?


The troll can be found underneath the north end of the Aurora Bridge. One of the artists, Steve Badaness highlighting the reason for public art "If you build public art, people will come upon it by surprise. Instead of keeping art in a museum, where only certain types of people get to see it, public art can affect everyone." Perhaps an unusual location for a public art piece. But than again Seattle is an unusual city.

About Author

Post by Kurt Trumble
The Low Down:

Kurt grew up on Long Island in New York. He spends his time learning emerging open source technologies and social media. He runs Travel With Drupal, focused on Drupal webdesign and blogging. ( Beatnik literature and The Beatles top his list of interests when not backpacking around.