Applegate-Lassen Emigrant Trail Cutoff
"What a view! The Humboldt Range brims with the fresh snows of February! ... All the while the lonely Applegate Trail veers away from society, land-locked here on this mundane interestate. Smart trail." -- Journal Entry, February 2008
Original Date Visited: 2/25/08
Notes: According to the SHPO you can find this marker "located along Interstate 80 at the Imlay Interchange". Let me tell you that you won't find this marker anywhere near this interchange. Throughout our conquerings directions written for any marker "along Interstate 80" almost always mean interstate frontage roads. In many cases, this is usually old US 40 and in this case, FR 115, signed as "Frontage Road" runs from Imlay to Mill City. Once you know this, finding this one is a breeze. Whether you're coming from the east or west, make the appropriate turn onto the "Frontage Road" in the direction of "Imlay." Stray left onto this frontage road and follow this old two-lane road well past Imlay until you run out of pavement! You can't miss this one even if you wanted to.
Jesse and Lindsay Applegate headed south from Willamette Valley, Oregon, June 29, 1846, seeking a less hazardous route to that region from the east. On July 21, they came to a large meadow on the Humboldt River, what is now the nearby Rye Patch Reservoir. Thus they established the Applegate Trail.
During the remainder of 1846 and for the next two years, Oregon emigrants successfully traveled this trail.
In 1848, Peter Lassen, hoping to bring emigrants to his ranch, acted as guide to a party of ten to 12 wagons bound for California. He followed a route from here to Goose Lake where he turned southward over terrain that was barely passable. The emigrants suffered great hardships; many lives and livestock were lost. It became known as the "Death Route."
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