Sunday, June 26, 2011

Pioneer Trek

After a year long of talk and anxiety the Trek is over
and I will have to say it was very enjoyable!Devil's Gate
The pioneers were so brave and faithful. The Church sponsored 10 handcart treks to
Utah. The most wells know and documented were the 4th and 5th the Willie and Martin Companies. In all 10 companies 3000 started their trek with about 250 deaths en route of which about 217 were from these 2 companies. The Saints were new converts, many non English speaking were unduly late sailing from England in 1856. With the lateness of sailing and subsequent delays in Iowa City and Florence they began their trek to Zion late in the season. The emigrants didn't know the country or the climate but they were following the Prophets voice to come to Zion. The 2 groups of 500 were strong and faithful and set out for Salt Lake City with their handcarts on August 18th. With a late start and early winter they encountered much tragedy. The emigrants were already exhausted they got a 4 x 4" bag of flour as their food ration a day
malnourished, and lacked warm clothing and bedding. In nine days of miserable travel, 56 people died. Many heart wrenching stories are told. The companies were overwhelmed by early snow and ran out completely out of food. They camped at Martins Cove which is now dedicated as sacared ground.
A rescue team eventually came but after much loss.
They were in such bad shape that rescue leaders emptied out their wagon and used then to carry the handcart survivors. In was November and -11 when they were finally found. The rescue party left men from their party to watch over the unloaded belongings. They left a few crackers and 75 skinny cows which they were suppose to eat only as a last resort. The men butchered the remaining cattle and they survived 6 weeks on the boiled cow hides and were able to return to Salt Lake City in the spring.

So the Stake after many many hours of preparation took 300 youth and leaders to Martins Cove to give them a pioneer experience and appreciation for the Mormon pioneers.
Our camp site was 6 miles from the main gate and staging area out on the prairie. After the kids were assigned their families they took their hand carts and walked out on the original trail to the camp site and set up their camps. Marriott at Martins Cove
comes with a cooler of diet Pepsi, diet Coke and diet DP
(we were popular)
single bed size cots with beautiful views we were mostly cooks but did get to be pioneers too!
The 2nd day we hiked about 5 miles and enjoyed Martins Cove but the kids ended up doing 15 miles while we were back at camp preparing their meals. The food was divine, the pioneer clothing was hot, the weather was perfect with thunderstorms and bright sun and one less rattle snake and lots of dirt. We worked hard, the kids enjoyed their time, the company was great and the spirit was strong. A good time was had by all, even me!


ethan said...

didn;t look as bad as i thought it would be... glad you had fun

Ashley said...

Glad you made it.