The Applegate-Lassen Trail   

Join us for this adventure back in time.

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August 2010, date tba

Applegate-Lassen Trail ride 1846-2010

History Re-visited. It's late April 1847, your jumping off point is Independence, MS; your traveling west in a wagon train, yours is being pulled by three yoke of Oxen, giving you an average speed of 1.5-mph. After months on the trail you arrive at Lassen Meadows in early August, there you find a painted barrel full of notes and mail from other travelers next to the trial... You dig in and start reading. Someone writes, "Last October (1846) the Donner Party had been stranded in the Sierra mountain snows with a great loss of life."  You rest for the night. In the morning you have to make a choice; follow the California (later the Donner Route) Route into the Sierra's, take the Carson Trail south-west across the 40-Mile Desert, or swing your wagons north-west via the Applegate-Lassen Trail (later to become known as the "Death Route"). Join us for this adventure back in time. This is History lesson...  we'll sightsee the watering holes they stopped at as they trekked across Northern Nevada; see emigrant graffiti carved into rock walls; and see wagon wheel tracks still visible on the trail today! We may stumble across a grave of a lady who died in child birth in the 1860s. Like those before us, we'll have to camp along the way (on the first night we can stay at a B&B, but reservations need to be made months ahead of time, if not we camp on the trail). Children are welcome. You'll be required to bring food, water and additional gas. This is not an off-road event, but a rolling History Lesson, though you'll need a 4WD to transverse the trail.   Space is limited...    


Above/Below: Jesse and Lindsay Applegate headed south from Willamette Valley, Oregon, June 29, 1846. Seeking a less hazardous route to that region from the east. On July 21 they came to a large meadow on the Humboldt River, what is now nearby Rye Patch Reservoir. Thus they established the Applegate Trail.   During the remainder of 1846 and for the next two years, Oregon emigrants successfully traveled this trail. In 1848, Peter Lassen, hoping to bring emigrants to his ranch, acted as a guide to a party of 10 to 12 wagons bound for California. He followed a route from here to Goose Lake where he turned southward over terrain that was barely passable. The emigrants suffered great hardships, many lives and livestock were lost. It became known as the "Death Route".

Here our convoy reads the Nevada Historical Marker at the beginning of our journey.