Itinerary: Oregon Trail
Courthouse Square in Independence, Missouri to Oregon City on the Willamette
River, the Oregon Trail was the first road west for Americans migrating from
the east 150 years ago. The length of the trail was 1,923 miles, and it was
used from 1843 to 1868. The trip took five to six months to complete, and most
emigrant wagons traveled at an average speed of 12-20 miles per day.
The highest point of the Oregon Trail
was at 7,500 feet at South Pass near Lander, Wyoming. Over 350,000 people are
estimated to have traveled the Oregon Trail during its working days, making
it the greatest mass migration in human history. As many as 35,000 people perished
along the route. The Trail allowed the United States to expand west through
Oregon and achieve its national "Manifest Destiny" to reach from "sea
to shining sea" by sheer force of population.
The Western Wagon Jamboree is an
annual event held in late May in Douglas. The event features wagon driving and
pulling competitions, music, vendors, a horse and wagon auction and an old west
cookout. The second weekend in August, Glennís Ferry, Idaho, recreates
the most difficult river crossing of the Oregon Trail. Numerous other events
commemorating the spirit of the pioneers occur all summer long. Tours and packages
are being offered throughout the length of the trail and are available by contacting
receptive operators found within this publication.
Corral West Ranchwear