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As the trail crossed a ridge of soft sandstone, the emigrants were forced to follow close behind one another. The resulting ruts are worn to a depth of five feet in some places. This is arguably the most spectacular stretch of ruts extant on the Oregon, California, and Mormon Pioneer National Historic Trails. This area gave the emigrants a taste of the kind of challenges that would become more and more familiar as they proceeded west.

Clayton told emigrants: "…you will find the road rocky in places and about half way over, there is a sudden turn in the road over rough rocks, which is dangerous to wagons, if care is not taken."

National Park Service Comprehensive Management Plan
This site is in need of some further development, interpretation, and protection. Visitor use should also be channeled to protect the ruts and surrounding terrain from the effects of indiscriminate access and the wandering of modern-day explorers.

The site in a National Historic Landmark.


Platte County, T26N, R65W

Signs in the town of Guernsey direct visitors to the location.

The site can also be reached from the Homsley grave . From the Homsley grave, turn right on the county road. The old trail routes parallel this road for many miles. Look for the white Carsonite Trail Markercarsonite markers to your right, then left, then back on the right. After going several miles, watch for the Whalen Dam Road. Turn right onto it. In about ˝ mile down the hill, the Bluff Route crosses the road. Nearer the river, the River Route crosses the Whalen Dam Road.


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