Following the Mormon Trail

Jan and I have followed many of America's highways. We have done the Lincoln Highway, Route 66, Lewis and Clark, US 89, US93 and the Pacific Coast Highway. This time we wanted to do the Mormon Trail.

As my family were all Mormons and we are both interested in Genealogy we have always had an interest in the journey the Mormons took. The story of the Mormon Church's development and the trek to Salt Lake is a great American adventure.

The Mormon trail goes from Nauvoo, Illinois to Salt Lake City. From 1846 until 1867 thousands of Mormon converts traveled the trail in wagons, on horseback, walking and pulling hand carts. All 8 of my great-grandparents and 5 of their parents made the trip on foot. It is different from the other roads we followed as it was first used before there were any other roads and current roads mostly do not follow the original trail. We tried to follow the original route the best we could. This often meant traveling unpaved roads. Also from Kearney Nebraska to Fort Bridger Wyoming the Mormon Trail, the California Trail, the Oregon Trail and the Pony Express were all the same route.

We took the Boxster. We try to stay off freeways as much as possible. In Arkansas, Missouri, Illinois, Iowa and Nebraska we periodically got in huge rainstorms. In all the those states there was flooding and some roads were closed. In between the sun came out and the top went down. A great way to travel.


4700 miles in 12 days

Outside of Marfa Texas

A Texas Windmill

The River Walk in San Antonio

The Alamo

San Antonia has some great old buildings

In a nice Arkansas town

In Independence Missouri

The Community of Christ auditorium

And their temple

Another offshoot church from the Mormons

A lot of big cows in Missouri

Joseph Smith and Brigham Young plotting their escape from Nauvoo

Rafts used to take the pioneers across the Mississippi

The store in Nauvoo. Joseph Smith's office was upstairs.

Joseph's house. Now owned by the Community of Christ

Nauvoo House

The Nauvoo Temple. It was destroyed in 1848 and rebuilt in 2002

I love it when Super is less than regular

We had to follow some dirt roads to stay close to the Mormon trail. Here it was raining like crazy

This is a museum in Kearney Nebraska. It celebrates all the roads that went through Nebraska. This was a hub for the Indian trails, the fur trappers, the California Trail, the Oregon Trail, the Mormon Trail, the Pony Express, the telegraph, the stagecoaches, the Lincoln Highway and Interstate 80. It 80 feet high from the bottom of the arch to the roof.

A radar unit checking for speeders on I80

This is the "Little Town that Could". North Platte Nebraska women greeted every troup train going to war day and night with food and good cheer during the Second World War.

Most of the Mormon trail follows the Platte and the North Platte River

Chimney Rock. A landmark for the pioneers outside of Scotts Bluff Nebraska

Fort Laramie

Another great museum in Casper Wyoming

Independence Rock. The pioneers carved their names in rock. It is just north of South Pass Wyoming.

Split Rock

The Pioneers crossed the Green River here

Fort Bridger

Early motel rooms

The pioneers arrived in Salt Lake on July 24th, 1847. This is the "This is the Place" Monument in Salt Lake.

On the way back to Tucson we stopped at Loa Utah. My pioneer great-grandfather helped found this town in 1879.

The old tithing office

This is my great-grandfather

We visited the genealogical library in Loa

My great-grandmother. The sixth wife.

Somehow we managed to lose the plastic wind deflector in the Porsche. It makes a huge difference in the wind and noise level while driving. Duct tape again came to the rescue. This time it was transparent duct tape.

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