California National Historic Trail (Nht), Salt Lake Cut-Off

Bureau of Land Management, Utah.

The Salt Lake Cut-Off on the California National Historic Trail is one of the many shortcuts that branched from the California, Mormon and Oregon Trails. It led northwest out of Salt Lake City, Utah and north of the Great Salt Lake for about 180 miles (290 km) before rejoining the Ft. Hall route of the California Trail near the City of Rocks, Idaho.

In 1848, a recently discovered pack train route was blazed into a passable wagon road by members of the Mormon Battalion returning from California to Salt Lake. Word spread quickly that a good road with good grass and water was passable out of Salt Lake City back to the California or Oregon Trail. When the gold-crazy emigrants of 1849 heard of this new route to the California gold fields, many thousands detoured to Salt Lake City to get new supplies and livestock. Mormons in Utah set up a thriving trading business with the new influx of emigrant trains.

Nearby Activities


Take Interstate 84 to Exit 5 for Curlew Junction. Drive west on SR 30 and SR 42 to Cedar Creek.