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Part 2: Following The Early Lincoln In Utah; West Valley City To Dugway

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Last July my father, son, and I embarked on a journey to follow a few old trails, railroads, and highways

through the western deserts of Nevada and Utah. I am skipping over the first two days of the journey for

now and will post those at a later date. On the third day of the trip we started out in West Valley City,

Utah, bound for Ely, Nevada. Our intent was to follow the early alignment of the Lincoln Highway across the Salt Lake Desert as much as possible.

 

The first part of the route

wvc_dugway.jpg

 

We followed Utah 201 west away from the urban area surrounding West Valley City, passing Magna, Arthur, and Garfield making our first stop at the Pony Express marker alongside the highway at Toronto Caves. This section of roadway lies on the Kennecot property and is not open to the public. The Pony Express marker was placed in 1946 and did not mention the nearby Lincoln Highway.

 

SC10_81_02.jpg

 

The classic view of this section of roadway that has been seen in a few books about the Lincoln.

 

SC10_81_01.jpg

 

We continued along past the Kennecot facilities following Utah 201 until it merged onto westbound I-80. Our stay on the Interstate was brief as we exited I-80 and headed southbound on Utah 36 until turning west on Utah 138. Utah 138 took us into Grantsville were we jogged over 1 street to the North and followed E. Clark St. through town. Since it was still early in the morning the Donner-Reed museum was closed so we continued on through town turning right on Old Lincoln Highway which ran parrallel to Utah 138 for a few

miles northwest of town.

 

Turning back onto 138 we continued north-westerly until reaching Mistway Road. A left turn kept us on what appeared to me to be the roadbed for US40 or a late incarnation of the Lincoln. The roadway was a full 2 lanes wide, asphalt, with faded striping down the middle. The roadbed ended at the base of Timpie Point were it was cut off by I-80. Getting around Timpie Point required a climb up and over the point along a steep and rough road to continue on as there was no access to the Interstate at that point. I might have been able to drive around the base but chose to take the road up the hill and exercise the four wheel drive.

 

The dry land between the base of Timpie Point and the Great Salt Lake has been used as a transportation corridor dating back to at least the wagon trains. In the past it has been used as part of the Hasting's Cutoff (California Trail), Lincoln Highway, Victory Highway, US 40, and is today used by the Union Pacific Railroad, powerlines, and Interstate 80.

 

 

Mistway Rd. Looking east. The green signage along the interstate can be seen on the right side and Timpie

Point is at the end of the raod.

SC10_81_03.jpg

 

On the west side of Timpie Point was Big Springs and a marker for the Hastings Cutoff. The story of this

route of the California Trail is quite interesting and part of the Donner Party lore. More information on the Hastings Cutoff can be found at http://www.utahcrossroads.org/G_HR_Tea.htm

 

Hastings Cutoff marker

SC10_81_05.jpg

 

From Big Springs the Lincoln headed south down Skull Valley towards Dugway. We opted to follow the paved road, Utah 196, which was 1/2 mile to the west and eventually joined the same route as the Lincoln. Evidence of earlier alignments were present running alongside and occasionally crossing underneath our path as we headed south towards Dugway.

 

The Lincoln heading south from Big Springs and Timpie Point.

SC10_81_08.jpg

 

Brown's Ranch along Skull Valley Road

SC10_81_09.jpg

 

At the end of Utah 196 is the entrance to the Dugway Proving Grounds. The Lincoln is now within the Army Base and cannot be followed unless you gain special clearance, and even then I have heard that photography is very controlled. Our route would have to take us around the proving grounds and along the Pony Express Trail.

 

The Army takes its security seriously here.

SC10_81_10.jpg

 

Stay tuned for Part 3; Antelopes, Ponies, and Obelisks. Oh My!

 

Roadhound

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Let me be the first to say Great!

 

I think the old road within the fence is really interesting, as is the barn, complete with Lincoln Highway sign. I am looking forward to your Pony Express impressions. You will be on a piece I have not.

 

The map is alway a welcom addition, but your photos are the special treat!

 

Keep the Show on the Road!

 

 

 

Let me be the first to say Great!

 

I think the old road within the fence is really interesting, as is the barn, complete with Lincoln Highway sign. I am looking forward to your Pony Express impressions. You will be on a piece I have not.

 

The map is alway a welcom addition, but your photos are the special treat!

 

Keep the Show on the Road!

 

 

Now that my place as first to say "great" is secure, let me savor a few things.

 

Why is the grass growing in such a uniform line in the Kennecot photo? It doesn't look like a joint in the concrete.

 

I really like the shot south from Big Springs. That is how the Lincoln must have looked to lots of travelers! It is a terrific view. Pavement was not the norm in the west, and was never the case along the stretch you are headed into.

 

Have you checked for matching sites/ views at the University of Michigan site?

 

Did you keep any GPS citations?

 

Looking forward to installment three!

 

Keep the Show on the Road.

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Let me be the first to say Great!

Second! Great!! Great!!!

 

I'm thinking of printing out the "south from Big Springs" shot and taping it to my windshield for garage sitting on rainy days.

 

Superb stuff.

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These photos have me itching!!! I especially like the "classic view" of the Lincoln and the shot of Mistway Road. Thank you for sharing! jim

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These photos have me itching!!! I especially like the "classic view" of the Lincoln and the shot of Mistway Road. Thank you for sharing! jim

Thanks to all of you for such a great response.

 

Why is the grass growing in such a uniform line in the Kennecot photo? It doesn't look like a joint in the concrete.

Until you pointed it out I hadn't really noticed. I would assume that it was a seem in the concrete. It seems to be to uniform and straight to be a crack. Unfortunately, even if I had noticed it at the time there is not much I could do to investigate closer since the area is private property.

 

Have you checked for matching sites/ views at the University of Michigan site?

I haven't look at the U of M site since I returned. I did look into it quite extensively a month before departing and I may have taken some similar shots. Will have to look into it as time allows. ;)

 

Did you keep any GPS citations?

In retrospect I wish I would have. In the future I am going to have to take better notes as I photograph these journeys. It would have come in handy identifying some of the geographical landmarks and Pony Express markers that have lost their plaques.

 

Back to work for me, more pictures to process.

 

Roadhound

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Guess if you can't make the trip on your own, for whatever reason, these great trip reports, and a little imagination, make up for it.

 

Thanks so much for sharing - looking fwd to more.

 

Who was it said "Always leave ''em wanting more!!!" :D

 

Hudsonly,

Alex Burr

http://www.freewebs.com/yankeetraveller/index.htm

Edited by hester_nec

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The photo behind the fence on Kennecott property was the road to get to the Great Salt Lake. As a child I had been on it many times. The rock formation you see in background has a cave at the face. So the lengend goes, it was called

"Dead Man's Cave" because some poor soul had supposedly hung himself inside.

 

 

Let me be the first to say Great!

 

I think the old road within the fence is really interesting, as is the barn, complete with Lincoln Highway sign. I am looking forward to your Pony Express impressions. You will be on a piece I have not.

 

The map is alway a welcom addition, but your photos are the special treat!

 

Keep the Show on the Road!

 

 

 

<!--quoteo(post=7728:date=Aug 20 2007, 04:16 PM:name=Keep the Show on the Road!)--><div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (Keep the Show on the Road! @ Aug 20 2007, 04:16 PM) <a href="index.php?act=findpost&pid=7728"><{POST_SNAPBACK}></a></div><div class='quotemain'><!--quotec-->Let me be the first to say Great!

 

I think the old road within the fence is really interesting, as is the barn, complete with Lincoln Highway sign. I am looking forward to your Pony Express impressions. You will be on a piece I have not.

 

The map is alway a welcom addition, but your photos are the special treat!

 

Keep the Show on the Road!<!--QuoteEnd--></div><!--QuoteEEnd-->

 

 

Now that my place as first to say "great" is secure, let me savor a few things.

 

Why is the grass growing in such a uniform line in the Kennecot photo? It doesn't look like a joint in the concrete.

 

I really like the shot south from Big Springs. That is how the Lincoln must have looked to lots of travelers! It is a terrific view. Pavement was not the norm in the west, and was never the case along the stretch you are headed into.

 

Have you checked for matching sites/ views at the University of Michigan site?

 

Did you keep any GPS citations?

 

Looking forward to installment three!

 

Keep the Show on the Road.

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