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Old Spanish Trail Monument Marker at Grand Junction, CO

Trail Notes

Elevation Profile

The following map prepared by the National Park Service with the following comments by Mark Henderson:

This is the elevation profile of the "Main" or "Northern Route." Note the "break point" at Mountain Meadow which Fremont considered the "rim of the Great Basin" and was the major "recruitment" area for pack stock headed west before entering the Mojave Desert section of the trail and similarly was a recruitment area for mule and horse drives east after the hardships of crossing the Mojave. Also note the location of Green River, possibly the single most dangerous point on the trail because of the risk of loss of cargo, livestock and people in crossing the Colorado River. Cajon Pass was the last topographic "pinch point" headed west and also demarcated the re-entry into the Californio settlements after 1000 miles of wilderness after leaving the frontier New Mexican settlement of Abiquiu.

Elevation Profile

360 Degree View of Fish Lake Cutoff Interpretation Displays

Fish Lake Cutoff Display

Explore the new Fish Lake Cutoff display in glorious 360 fashion. Use the zoom keys to read the display contents.

The Fishlake National Forest in Utah has been working to mark the general route of a portion of the Old Spanish Trail known as the Fish Lake Cut-off that crosses public lands administered by the Forest Service. Visitors at the site are able to read about John C. Charles Fremont, Capt. John Gunnison, Kit Carson, Lt. George Brewerton and the Ute Chief, Walkara.  Silhouette, life-sized pack trains can be found at the Johnson Valley and Doctor Creek interpretive panels.

Old Spanish Trail and Gunnison River Report

Gunnison River Report

Mesa County, Colorado in partnership with various public and private organizations, has developed this plan to recognize, promote and protect the Old Spanish Trail and Gunnison River Bluffs Trail (the Sister Trails) area by:
• Developing a vision and goals for the area;
• Identifying, surveying and recording trail alignments through the area;
• Identifying trail standards to be used for construction and maintenance;
• Identifying signing standards;
• Identifying funding sources for trail and trailhead development and enhancements;
• Developing a Community Engagement Strategy; and
• Promoting long-term stewardship.

Location

The Sister Trails area includes approximately 3,000 acres of bluffs and desert land along the Gunnison River immediately south of Orchard Mesa and north of Whitewater, Colorado where the Old Spanish Trail (northern branch) and historic wagon roads traverse the area.

Notes from the Old Spanish National Historic Trail

Download the interpretive Trail Personality Profiles to learn more about the trail:

Antonio Armijo (1.4 MB)
Francisco Estevan Vigil (1.2 MB)
Isaac Slover (0.8 MB)
Churro Sheep (4.7 MB)

Trail Corridor Maps for Specific Areas

These trail corridor maps were shared at public scoping meetings in 2006 and are approximately 2MB in size. Click on the community names below to retrieve a map of the trail in that vicinity.

The general six state map with shaded relief

Abiquiu, NM
Alamosa, CO
Aztec, NM
Barstow, CA
Cedar City, UT
Durango, CO
Grand Junction, CO - Moab, UT
Green RIver, UT
Gunnison, CO
Kayenta, AZ
Las Vegas, NV
Los Angeles, CA
Mesquite, NV
Page, AZ
Pahrump, NV - Tecopa, CA
Redlands-San Bernadino, CA
Santa Fe, NM
Taos, NM

 

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