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Historic Santa Fe Trail and Wagon Ruts

In the quiet of the high desert you can almost hear the giddy ups along the old Santa Fe Trail. the area northeast of Santa Fe is pretty much unchanged since the Santa Fe trail’s heyday during the mid 19th century.

The Santa Fe Trail was the main overland trail from Missouri to Santa Fe and the New Mexico territories for most of the 1800’s.

The Santa Fe Trail played a huge role in the US expansion westwards as it opened up the Southwest to pioneers and settlers seeking homesteads and opportunities.

The Santa Fe Trail was also used by the US Army both in the Mexican-American War and later on during the Civil War, when the Confederates pushed west and were defeated at the battle of Glorieta Pass.

Along the trail in New Mexico, you can see old wagon wheel ruts (some deeper than others) as well as the ruins of Fort Union, which protected the trail and pass to Santa Fe itself. (see blog post on Fort Union, Guardian of the Trail).

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