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The term "Oregon Trail" was a matter of convenience. Technically there were three trails, more generally referred to as the "Emigrant Trail": - Oregon Trail (to Oregon's Willamette Valley) - California Trail and Mormon Trail (to Salt Lake City, Utah,) In Nebraska Territory, around Sweetwater Crossing, the three trails share the same route. The entire journey was around 2000 miles, taking about 4-6 months. (photo: Circled wagon train near Devil's Gate)

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Mormon trail wagon ruts still visible today in Wyoming

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Oregon Trail / California Trail / Sante Fe Trail / Old Spanish Trail / Mormon Trail.

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A pioneer wagon train winding down through Echo Canyon in 1868.

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Life and Death on the Trek--The Mormon pioneer trek was no walk in the park, but BYU research shows that more survived the hardship than you might think. Historian Melvin L. Bashore (MLS ’75) and statistics professor H. Dennis Tolley (BS ’70) teamed with eight students to crunch data on 56,000 pioneer records from 1847–1868. Numbers from their study paint the story of life and death on the trek:

The Mormon trail from Nauvoo to Salt Lake Valley.

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physical activity lesson. Track your exercise with this map of the Mormon Pioneer trail. How long will it take YOU to get to the Salt Lake Valley

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Devil's Gate a gorge on the Sweetwater River a few miles southwest of Independence Rock. The site, significant in the history of western pioneers, was a major landmark on the Mormon Trail and the Oregon Trail.

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Mormon Trail Handcart Pioneer

mormon pioneers | Mormon Pioneer Trail from Nauvoo to the Salt Lake Valley