Oregon Trail Ruts

Just outside of Guernsey, Wyoming, south of the North Platte River, is a section of solid rock that has been cut into by history. The wagon ruts were made by brave pioneers heading west on the Oregon Trail in the mid-1800s. Oregon Trail Ruts State Historic Site preserves this history.

 

Oregon Trail Ruts State Historic Site

The wagon wheels made the ruts over several years, eventually cutting through four feet of solid sandstone in some parts. Some of the best preserved ruts along the Oregon Trail are at this site.

Oregon Trail Ruts State Historic Park in Wyoming

Oregon Trail ruts

Oregon Trail Ruts State Historic Park in Wyoming

Oregon Trail ruts

A small path from the parking lot leads to the ruts. Admission is free. There are some interpretive panels at the beginning of the trail and along the way. The site is only a short drive from Fort Laramie National Historic Site. They can both be visited on the same trip.

The path at Oregon Trail Ruts State Historic Park in Wyoming

The path

 

Grave of Lucindy Rollins

Near the ruts is the grave of Lucindy Rollins. She was a pioneer who originally began her trek west in Dayton, Ohio. She died in 1849 and was buried near the North Platte River. Her cause of death is unknown, but she was most likely heading to California.

Lucindy Rollins gravesite near Oregon Trail Ruts State Historic Site in Wyoming

Lucindy Rollins gravesite

Rollins’ grave was lost over the years, as were many along the trail. It was rediscovered in 1934 when a man named William E. Smith, Jr., was out duck hunting. He stumbled upon the original headstone, which was later moved to a local museum. A new headstone and landscaped grave were rededicated shortly after to Rollins and all pioneer women.

Lucindy Rollins gravesite near Oregon Trail Ruts State Historic Site in Wyoming

Lucindy Rollins gravesite

%d bloggers like this: