Great Basin Shrub-Steppe, Northern Portion, Part I


Cultural Landscapes

Montane Forests and Cultural Landscapes of the Great Basin

Montane Forests and the Cultural Landscape of the Desert

Ice Age Lakes, Historic Trails, and Nevada’s Yosemite

I. Map Focus Area: 40 to 43 degrees North, 111 to 121 degrees West

II. Countries and Subdivisions (States):  United States (California, Idaho, Nevada, Oregon, Utah)

III.  Overview

The most important event influencing the northeastern Great Basin in the map area was the prehistoric presence of Lake Bonneville and Lake Lahontan.  Lake Bonneville occupied the eastern portion, and Great Salt Lake is its remnant.  Lake Lahontan occupied the western portion, and the Humboldt River and Carson River sink (south of the map area) is its remnant.  At about 15,000 years Before Present (BP), Lake Bonneville reached its highstand of 1552 m elevation and was a trout-filled cold water body.  The fluctuations of the lake influenced much of the area.  During the highstand, Lake Bonneville overflowed to the north into the Snake River basin.  However, at 14,500 BP, an alluvial dam at Zenda, Idaho (site 1 on map, south of Downey on US 91), collapsed, producing a massive flood.  The peak discharge into the Snake River, one million cubic feet per second, was the equivalent of all the world’s rivers combined.  Within a year the lake stabilized at 1,444 m when the water erosive force met bedrock at Red Rock Pass, Idaho, near Downey on US 91.  However, increasing aridity caused the lake to continue to decline in elevation to where it reached the current level of Great Salt Lake by 11,300 BP.  This level was accompanied by a massive die-off of fresh water fish.  There have been other fluctuations, but the lake has always returned back to Great Salt Lake levels (Rhode et al. 2005).

For emigrants to California in the 1840s and 1850s, perhaps the most arduous portion of the trip was across the Great Basin desert of northern Utah and Nevada.  Today a number of sites commemorate the historic trails; many are on public land and can be visited.  A more detailed listing is described under the California National Historic Trail entry.  The Pony Express also crossed the Great Basin desert, as did the transcontinental railroad.  Both are commemorated by remnants which can be visited.  In 1846, California-bound immigrants known as the Reed-Donner party left the established California Trail at Fort Bridger, Wyoming and attempted the Hastings Cutoff.  The Donner party encountered a two-week delay in the Wasatch Mountains and was already very late in the year when they entered today’s Nevada to the west of the Great Salt Lake.  On the first week of October, they arrived at a sharp bend in the Humboldt River known today as Iron Point (site 2).  It was most expedient at that point to drive the oxen up a steep hill which provided a shortcut and connected back with the river valley.  The last of the party to attempt the hill were wagons driven by John Snyder and Milford Elliott, driving the wagon of James Reed.  When their cattle became entangled, the men started to quarrel, which led to the stabbing death of Snyder by Reed (Grebenkemper, Johnson, and Morris 2012).

The Great Basin shrub-steppe ecoregion in Utah and Nevada extends from Great Salt Lake in the east to the Sierra in the west.  Habitats in Utah are dominated by barren salt deserts containing playas, salt flats, mud flats, and saline lakes.  Around the perimeters of the salt deserts are shadscale-greasewood areas.  Mountainous areas south of Great Salt Lake support woodlands with forests in the highest elevations.  There are wetter areas draining the west side of the Wasatch Mountains, and this is where the population centers such as Salt Lake City are located.  Extensive areas of wetlands adjoin the eastern Great Salt Lake.  Habitats in eastern Nevada are many of the same as in Utah, but as the land continues west into the Humboldt River drainage things get even hotter and drier.  Marshes, remnant lakes, and playas remain from the Pleistocene-age Lake Lahontan.  Other portions of the former lakebed are dominated by salt-tolerant shrubs.  Sagebrush is on the slopes and low mountains.  Uplands in the Lahontan area support grasses and pinyon-juniper vegetation.

The Great Basin shrub-steppe ecoregion includes a portion of southeastern Idaho south of the Snake River.  In this area the Great Basin is a high plateau overlooking the Snake River plain.  The Idaho areas are less arid than the portions of the Great Basin in Nevada and Utah and tend to be dominated by sagebrush grassland at lower elevations, with mountain big sagebrush, small areas of juniper and woodland of aspen, Douglas-fir, and lodgepole pine at higher elevations.  The Idaho portions tend to be less arid than the Snake River Plain to the north.  The mountains tend to have more woodland than the rest of the Great Basin, and a number of areas have been designated as national forests.  The perennial water source in the Great Basin in this area is the Bear River, which flows north through the Wyoming shrub-steppe into Idaho.  Originally, the Bear River flowed northward to the Snake.  However, about 140,000 years ago lava flows north of Soda Springs (site 3) blocked the water and it diverted south to the Great Salt Lake.

One of the most infamous environmental incidents in the Great Basin occurred in 1968 at Skull Valley, Utah (site 4).  As described in Science at the time, “nine months ago, some 6,000 sheep grazing in Skull Valley, Utah, were killed or sickened by a mysterious ailment that attacked the central nervous system.”  The agent proved to be VX, a type of nerve gas that was apparently being tested just to the west at Dugway Proving Grounds.  The sheep likely ingested the nerve agent by eating contaminated vegetation.   A Utah senator disclosed that nerve agents had been used in the area at the time the sheep were killed (Boffey 1968).  There were concerns that such open-air testing could lead to adverse human health effects. The timing of the incident and accompanying outrage added fuel to the birth of the environmental movement.

Another incident in environmental history in the Great Basin also occurred during the 1960s.  There were plans to raise the height of American Falls dam to store more irrigation water.  However, the higher water would flood the Fort Hall bottoms and the project was opposed by the Shoshone-Bannock Tribe, which controlled the south side of the bottoms (Nelson 1968).  The dam was reconstructed with the same pool.

IV.               Great Basin Montane Forests

Isolated high mountains in eastern and northern Nevada are delineated as a separate ecoregion, the Great Basin montane forests (NA 515), part of the temperate coniferous forests of the Neararctic (NA) Biome.   This ecoregion is found on isolated ranges rising high out of the Great Basin desert—Ruby, Jarbridge, Independence, and Santa Rosa.  Montane vegetation is organized in life zones based on elevation gradients.  From the valley upward, these zones include shrub-steppe, pinyon-juniper, douglas fir, and high elevation woodlands.  High elevation woodlands include montane white fir, limber pine, and bristlecone pine.  Aspens are on moist slopes and high meadows.  The Ruby Mountains exhibit evidence of extensive glaciation and have some remnant alpine tundra.  The ecoregion has high genetic variation in conifers due to isolation, and high beta biodiversity due to a mosaic of forest and woodland types.  This resulted in it being split from the Great Basin shrub-steppe ecoregion by the World Wildlife Fund- Nature Conservancy ecoregions project.

The Ruby, Jarbridge, Independence, and Santa Rosa mountain areas (sites 6, 7, 8, and 9 on the map) are mostly contained within the boundaries of the Humboldt National Forest (NF), Nevada.  Three units of this forest are in the northern Great Basin montane forests ecoregion.  The Jarbridge and Mountain City Ranger Districts are located north of Elko on the Idaho state line.  This area rises 4,000 feet above the Snake River Plain to the north and contains numerous peaks over 10,000 feet in elevation.  Vegetation ranges from sagebrush to alpine meadows and pine forests.  The area is noted for sculptured rock formations and golden eagles.  The Ruby Mountains Ranger District is located east and south of Elko.  Known for spring wildflowers, this area contains glaciated Lamoille Canyon, called the “Yosemite of Nevada,” and glacial lakes and cirques.  Vegetation ranges from sagebrush to pine forests on rocky peaks.  The Santa Rosa Ranger District is located north of Winnemucca and is noted for the scenic drive between Paradise Valley and Hinkey Summit.  The drive features unusual stone pillars and wildflowers at the summit.  Four wilderness areas—East Humboldts, Jarbridge, Ruby Mountains, and Santa Rosa-Paradise Peak (see descriptions below)—are within the forest in the map area.

The National Trail System in the Great Basin montane forests is represented by the Ruby Crest National Recreation Trail (NRT), Ruby Mountains Wilderness, Humboldt NF, Nevada (6).   The Ruby Crest National Recreation Trail extends for 33 miles south from Lamoille Canyon to the road at Harrison Pass, traversing a mountain crest that is more than 6,000 feet higher than surrounding valleys.

The Wilderness Act-designated areas in the Great Basin montane forests include the Jarbridge, Ruby Mountains, and Santa Rosa-Paradise Peak areas, all administered by the Humboldt NF.  The Jarbridge Wilderness, Humboldt NF, Nevada (7), surrounds eight peaks over 10,000 feet which rise 4,000 feet from surrounding valleys.  The area receives seven to eight feet of snow annually.  Marys River Peak, Divide Peak, Gods Pocket Peak, Cougar Peak, Prospect Peak, Fox Creek Peak, Jarbridge Peak, and the Matterhorn are in the wilderness.

The Ruby Mountains Wilderness, Humboldt NF, Nevada (6), is noted for glacial features.  The northern part of this 93,000-acre wilderness surrounds Lamoille Canyon, Nevada’s Yosemite.  The canyon is U-shaped, with hanging valleys, a sign of glaciation.  The walls and hanging valleys are within the wilderness area, while State Route 227 from Elko dead ends at the upper end of the canyon.  The northernmost peak in the wilderness is Soldier Peak, one of ten peaks exceeding 11,000 feet in elevation, and the southernmost peak is Green Mountain.  South of Lamoille are glacial lake basins, meadows, and a grassy ridge for more than 20 miles.  The Ruby Crest National Recreation Trail (see description above) is within the wilderness.  Fauna includes mule deer, mountain goats, Lahontan cutthroat trout, and Himalayan snowcocks, which were introduced in the 1960s and are reproducing.  The wilderness is an IBA for three species of rosy finch and the Himalayan snowcock.

The Santa Rosa-Paradise Peak Wilderness, Humboldt NF, Nevada (9), is located east of US 95 at Orovada, Nevada.  This is a remote area of rugged granite peaks, basins with wildflowers, and aspen pockets.  Trails lead to rock outcroppings and wildflowers.  Features include Buffalo Canyon, Falls Canyon, Paradise Peak, Santa Rosa Peak, Sawtooth Mountain, and Rebel Creek.

V.                 Great Basin Shrub-Steppe

The lower elevation portion of the northern Great Basin are considered Deserts and Xeric Shrublands of the Neararctic Biome.  The Great Basin shrub-steppe ecoregion (NA1305) extends across California, Idaho, Nevada, Oregon, and Utah.  This map includes the northern part of this ecoregion.  Prominent geographic features in this ecoregion are the Great Salt Lake, Utah Lake, and Great Salt Lake Desert in Utah; the Bannock Range, Curlew Valley, and Blackfoot Range in Idaho; and the Humboldt River, Black Rock Desert, and Pyramid Lake in Nevada. This is an area of precipitous north-south mountain ranges rising thousands of feet above intervening valleys.  There are about 100 internal drainage areas, although some of the Idaho portion drains to the Snake River via the Raft and Blackfoot Rivers.  The distinctive vegetation is sagebrush, saltbrush, and winterfat, with some areas of shadscale.  Introduced annuals such as cheatgrass and Russian thistle have replaced native grasses or spread between sagebrush where there were no grasses before.

A.     Cultural Sites

National Historic Landmarks in the Great Basin shrub-steppe are associated with aboriginal history, settlement by early pioneers including the Mormans, and mining history.  Danger Cave, a Utah State Park undeveloped property, Utah (10), is a solution cave in the Silver Island Range formed by glacial Lake Bonneville.  The cave provided good human habitat once it receded.  Evidence of human use dates back more than 10,000 years, making it the most important archaeological site in the Great Basin.  A small spring-fed wetland provides water, and the cave provided shelter.  The site was occupied from 9,500 BCE to 500 CE.    Archaeological finds are that from 9,500 BCE to 9000 BCE, crude chipped stone artifacts were present.  From 9,000 to 8,000 BCE, milling stones, basketry, and notched projectiles were found.  Also found are leather scraps, pieces of string, fabric, and basket fragments.  Bone and wood tools such as knives, weapons, and are present.  Another NHL, Leonard Rockshelter, Nevada (11), is in the West Humboldt Range and provides a continuum of cultural occupations from 6710 BC to 1400 AD along the shore of ancient Lake Lahontan.

City of Rocks National Reserve, Idaho (12), jointly administered by the National Park Service and Idaho Department of Parks and Recreation, contains monolithic landforms created by the exfoliation of granite plutons.  It is a NHL because it was a major landmark for immigrants on the California Trail, some of whom inscribed their signatures in 1850 on Register Rock. Early emigrants thought the rocks resembled a city skyline.  It is a National Natural Landmark as the best example of bornhardts—weather-resistant rock left standing after erosion of surrounding rocks.  The preserve contains the largest pinyon pine forest in Idaho and also an aspen grove.  Rock climbing is available on spires up to 600 feet tall, along with birding, 22 miles of hiking trails, and a natural arch.  The reserve is an Important Bird Area (IBA) for long-billed curlew, greater sage grouse, and burrowing owl.

Fort Hall, American Falls Reservoir and Fort Hall Indian Reservation (Shoshone-Bannock Tribe), Idaho (13) was a fur trade outpost dating to 1834 and the most important trading post in the Snake River Valley, established by Americans in disputed territory.  It was also associated with overland migration as a stop on the Oregon and California Trails.  Although the exact site cannot be located, the general vicinity containing the site is a joint management responsibility of the Bureau of Reclamation and the Bureau of Indian Affairs.

Fort Ruby, Ruby Lake National Wildlife Refuge, Nevada (14) was a log structure built to protect the Overland Mail route from Paiute Indians from 1862 to 1869.  The refuge also includes the Ruby Valley Pony Express Station.

Fort Douglas, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah (15), consists of over 100 original buildings; the Stillwell Field Parade Ground and the bandstand are preserved as residential housing and other buildings for the University of Utah.  The Fort Douglas Museum, operated by the Utah National Guard, is also in three buildings.  The fort dates to 1862 and originally served to protect overland mail routes.  Troops from the fort participated in the 1863 Bear River Massacre (see), the northern Plains Indian campaigns, the Spanish American War and world wars in the 20th century.  Buildings date to 1875 and are considered the finest surviving examples of quartermaster gothic architecture.  Fort Douglas was turned over to the University of Utah in 1993.  The university added additional buildings for student housing and the 2002 Winter Olympic Games.

The Bear River Massacre Site, owned by the Lemhi-Shoshone Nation, Idaho (16), is on US 91 northwest of Preston.  The site commemorates the attack on a Shoshone Village during the Civil War by the U.S. Army from Fort Douglas (see).  In January 1863 at 1 a.m. over 300 people were killed in one of the bloodiest encounters in the West.  The Shoshone had resisted settlement of the Cache Valley.

There are four NHLs associated with the Morman settlement of today’s Utah.  A fifth NHL, Emigration Canyon, is mostly in the Wasatch and Uinta Mountains ecoregion and was described under that entry.  This Is the Place Heritage Park, Utah, is a historic site and living history area at the mouth of Emigration Canyon, and a site on the Morman Pioneer National Historic Trail.

The Beehive House and Lion House, Salt Lake City, Utah (15) were family residences of Brigham Young; both are a national historic landmark because they are closely associated with western expansion and settlement.  The Beehive House was built in 1852 and served as Utah’s executive mansion from 1852 to 1855.  The Lion House, built in 1856, housed an additional 12 wives.

Council Hall (Old Salt Lake City Hall), Utah (15) served as a municipal building and Utah Territorial Capitol from 1866 to 1896.  It was the site of the 1872 constitutional convention to establish the state of Deseret; this initiative was not accepted by the US Congress.  The building was the focal point for confrontations between Federal officials and Morman leaders.

Reed O. Smoot House, Provo, Utah (54) was built in 1892 when Smoot was already a US Senator.  This property is linked with early Utah’s political and religious history.  A senior member of the Mormon hierarchy, Smoot was elected senator.  Because of his involvement in the church, a national campaign to unseat him was launched in 1904 to 1907, but the Senate refused to remove him. In the Senate in the early 20th century, he was a proponent of reduced spending, lower taxes, and high tariffs.  He lost in 1932 with the democratic landslide.

Temple Square, Salt Lake City, Utah (15) consists of four structures which make up a National Historic Landmark district; all are associated with the history of the Mormons.  The Salt Lake Temple was built between 1853 and 1893.  The Salt Lake Tabernacle was built 1864-1867 as a conference center, and the Salt Lake Assembly Hall was built in 1877.  The Tabernacle’s unsupported roof dome is believed to be one of the largest in the world.  The Seagull Monument, built in 1913, commemorates the legend that the harvest in 1848 was saved by native seagulls, who ate crickets infesting the crops.

Mining history is represented by the Bingham Canyon Mine (Kennecott Copper Mine), Rio Tinto Corporation Kennecott Utah Copper Division, Utah (17).   The rich copper deposit in the Oquirrh Mountains has been mined since 1906, creating the world’s largest copper mine.  The pit is over ¾ mile deep, 2.5 miles wide, and 1,900 feet in area.  Low concentration copper ore is ground up and mixed with chemicals.  Copper-bearing minerals float to the top.  These minerals are then melted to burn off impurities and poured into copper anodes.  The final step is electrolysis to create pure copper at the cathodes.  A visitor center is on Route 111.  Over time, selenium and other metals leached from the mine have polluted the Great Salt Lake and contaminated groundwater in the area.

A national park system cultural site in the Great Basin is the Golden Spike National Historic Site, Utah (18).  Preserved is a difficult area of railroad construction in the Promontory Mountains north of the Great Salt Lake, as well as the site where the Central Pacific and Union Pacific Railroads met to create the transcontinental railroad.

The California and Pony Express National Historic Trails have a number of designated sites in the Great Basin, listed below are those north of the 40th parallel:

The California National Historic Trail crosses Idaho, Nevada, and Utah.  The main trail and four cutoffs, often originating as short cuts, are in the Great Basin shrub-steppe.

Main trail route:

  • Soda Springs, Idaho (3).  Travelers stopped here for hot carbonated water.  Several springs and trail ruts can be seen at the upper end of Alexander Reservoir on Soda Creek.
  • Sheep Rock, Idaho (3).  Located at the northernmost tip of the Wasatch Mountains, this was the point where the Bidwell-Bartleson Party headed south to California and the Hudspeth Cutoff headed west.  The main Oregon-California trail headed northwest.
  • Fort Hall, Idaho (13).  This was one of the most important Oregon-California trail landmarks.  See Fort Hall NHL
  • American Falls, Idaho (5).  This landmark is now under American Falls Reservoir.
  • Massacre Rocks, Idaho (19).  Today a state park, the trail went between rock formations that were only wide enough for one wagon.  I-86 now passes through the trail route.  Although no massacre took place at the site, immigrants feared massacres when the trail closed in and visibility was low.
  • Register Rock, Idaho (19).  Immigrants wrote their names on this large boulder just west of Massacre Rocks.
  • Coldwater Hill, Idaho (19).  This landmark is today a rest area on I-86, milepost 19.
  • Raft River Crossing, Idaho (19).  On the plateau above the river crossing is the Parting of the Ways, where the Oregon Trail headed west along the Snake River and the California trail turned southwest into the desert.
  • City of Rocks, Idaho (12).  See City of Rocks National Reserve NHL.
  • Granite Pass, Idaho (20).  This was the boundary with Mexico in 1840 when the trail first opened.
  • Goose Creek, Nevada-Utah (21).  The trail followed this creek for 20 miles to Little Goose Creek Canyon in Nevada.
  • Record Bluff, Nevada (21).  This rock formation is along Goose Creek.
  • Rock Spring, Nevada (22).  The welcome sight of a spring issued from a cliff.
  • Thousand Springs Valley, Nevada (23).  Numerous hot, cold, and mineral springs are found in this desert valley.
  • Humboldt Wells, Nevada (24).  Just north of today’s city of Wells, this marshy area is the source of the Humboldt River, which the trail followed until it evaporated in the desert several hundred miles to the west.
  • Carlin Canyon, Nevada (25).  At this site, there were rock walls lining the river, causing the wagons to ford the river four times.  During high water, the route was difficult and a bypass was used.  One river bend is now avoided by a tunnel on I-80.
  • Gravelly Ford, Nevada (26).  West of Carlin Canyon, the trail climbed Emigrant Pass (now also used by I-80) before turning south and following Emigrant Canyon to the Humboldt River at this point.  From the ford westward, alternate trail routes were on the north side and south side of the Humboldt River.  Emigrant graves are found at this site two miles east of Beowawe.
  • Iron Point, Nevada (2).  This prominent river bend in Nevada east of Golconda was the site of an argument within the Donner-Reed party that resulted in a fatality.  See description in the Great Basin overview.  Wagons went up a hill to avoid a sharp river bend and extra mileage.  Later there were clashes with the Western Shoshone tribe.

Hudspeth Cutoff

  • Summit Springs, Idaho and Sublett Creek Canyon, Idaho (27).  These areas are located adjacent to each other in the Sawtooth National Forest, Sublette Division.

Salt Lake Cutoff

  • Haight Creek, Utah (28).  Located south of Shepard Lane and west of I-15 in Farmington, this creek and watering stop is preserved as an urban nature park.
  • Hampton Ford and Stage Stop, Utah (29).  Located at the Bear River crossing just west of Collinston, Utah, this site is also known as the Bear River Hotel.
  • Rocky Ford, Utah (30).  The crossing of the Malad River was a difficult one, and this provided a firm bottom for the crossing.  The crossing is on private property west of I-15 river crossing near Plymouth, Utah.  The crossing was first used by the Bidwell-Bartleson Party.
  • Pilot Springs, Utah (31).  Located in Curlew Valley southeast of the junction of Routes 30 and 42.
  • Raft River Narrows, Idaho (32).  Located at the south end of the Jim Sage Mountains, this provided a trail passage between two ridges.

Hastings Cutoff

  • Bensons Mill, Utah (33).  Located in Stansbury Park, this Mormon site was mentioned by California Trail travelers.
  • Timpie Point, Utah (34).  The trail went around the northern edge of the Stansbury Range at the edge of the Great Salt Lake.  After this point, wagons turned south to take advantage of springs on the west side of the Stansburys.
  • Spring at Dell Ranch, Utah (35).  On the west side of the Stansbury Range.
  • Rock Ledge Overlook, Utah (35). On the west side of the Stansbury Range.
  • Hope Wells, Utah (36).  This was where the trail turned west from the Stansbury Range and the trek across the arid Skull Valley began.  Later this site would be settled by Polynesian members of the Mormon Church and inhabited as the town of Iosepa between 1889 and 1917, when it was abandoned.
  • Redlum Spring, Utah (37).  This brackish waterhole in the Cedar Mountains was the last water hole for 65 miles across the Great Salt Lake Desert.
  • Hastings Pass, Utah (38).  The lowest point in the Cedar Mountains was the crossing point above Redlum Spring.
  • Grayback Hills, Utah (38).  This was a steep saddle in the Salt Lake Desert.
  • Floating Island, Utah (39).  This isolated peak rises out of the flat salt lake desert and appears to float on hot air above the flats.
  • Playa Wagon Tracks, Utah (40).  These are located to the east of Donner Spring.
  • Donner Spring, Utah (40).  Located at the foot of Pilot Peak, this was the first fresh water for 65 miles since leaving Redlum Spring.
  • Halls Spring, Utah (40).  This is another spring at the foot of Pilot Peak.
  • Pilot Peak, Nevada (41).  This trail landmark was used to navigate across the Salt Lake Desert.
  • Bidwell Pass, Nevada (41).  Located on the state line just south of Pilot Peak.
  • Silver Zone Pass, Nevada (42).  Located in the Toano Mountains, now crossed by I-80.
  • Big Springs, Nevada (43).  Located in the Goshute Valley at the east side of the Pequop Mountains
  • Flowery Lake Springs, Nevada (44).  Located in the Goshute Valley at the east side of the Pequop Mountains.
  • Mound Springs, Nevada (45).  Located in the Independence Valley on the east side of the Spruce Mountain Ridge.
  • Warm Springs, Nevada (46).  Located in the Clover Valley on the east side of the East Humboldt Range.
  • Sulphur Hot Springs, Nevada (47).  Located on the east side of the Ruby Mountains in Ruby Valley.
  • Cave Creek, Nevada (48).  Located on the east side of the Ruby Mountains in the present-day Ruby Lake National Wildlife Refuge.
  • South Fork of Humboldt River Gorge Overlook, Nevada (49).  The Hastings Cutoff went through this deep canyon just south of Elko.

Applegate Trail

This alternate route to California and Oregon began at the upper end of today’s Rye Patch Reservoir on the Humboldt River.  The sites in the Great Basin are all protected in the Black Rock Desert-High Rock Canyon Emigrant Trails National Conservation Area (BRD-HRCETNCA, see)

  • Willow Springs, BRD-HRCETNCA,Nevada (50).  This was the first reliable spring heading west from the Humboldt River.
  • Antelope Springs, BRD-HRCETNCA, Nevada (50).
  • Antelope Pass, BRD-HRCETNCA, Nevada (50).
  • Kamma Pass, BRD-HRCETNCA, Nevada (51).
  • Rabbithole Spring, BRD-HRCETNCA, Nevada (51).
  • Black Rock Springs, BRD-HRCETNCA, Nevada.  Located at the base of the prominent Black Rock (52).
  • Double Hot Springs, BRD-HRCETNCA, Nevada (53).  The water is 140 to 200 degrees and dangerous for swimming.

Oregon National Historic Trail, Idaho.  The following sites are in the Great Basin shrub-steppe and are described under the California NHT entry:

  • Soda Springs, Idaho (3)
  • Sheep Rock, Idaho (3)
  • Fort Hall, Idaho (13); See Fort Hall NHL
  • American Falls, Idaho (5)(now under American Falls Reservoir)
  • Massacre Rocks, Idaho (19)
  • Register Rock, Idaho (19)
  • Coldwater Hill, Idaho (19)
  • Raft River Crossing, Idaho (19) (California Trail junction).

Pony Express National Historic Trail, Nevada-Utah.  The following sites are located in the Great Basin in the map area (north of 40th parallel):

  • Salt Lake House, Utah (15).  This was located at 143 South Main Street in Salt Lake City.
  • Traders Rest Station, Utah (54).  Located just north of 7200 South street.
  • Rockwell’s Station, Utah (54).  Located just south of today’s Utah State Prison at Porter Rockwell’s Hot Springs and Brewery.  Rockwell was the bodyguard of Joseph Smith and Brigham Young.
  • Indian Ford, Utah (54).  The trail crossed the Jordan River at Lehi, Utah.
  • Dugout, Utah (55).  This was a pass between the Utah Valley and Cedar Valley.
  • Camp Floyd/Stagecoach Inn State Park and Museum, Utah (56).  The military post was established by President James Buchanan in 1858 to monitor Morman activities.  The inn served the military post and was also a stop on the Overland Stage Route and Pony Express.  It is a site on the Pony Express NHT.
  • Pass/East Rush Valley Station, Utah (57).
  • Faust’s Station, Utah (58).
  • Point Lookout Station, Utah (59).  This provides a view into the western desert.
  • Simpson Springs, Utah (60).  This was a dependable desert spring.  The trail dips south of the map area at this point.
  • Canyon Station, Utah (61).
  • Deep Creek Station, Utah (61).  This was the last of the stations in Utah at present-day Ibapah.  The trail dips south of the map area until Fort Ruby, Nevada.
  • Ruby Valley Station, Nevada (14).  See Fort Ruby National Historic Landmark.  The trail dips south of the map area after crossing the Overland Pass at the south end of the Ruby Mountains.

To be continued with natural sites.