The Bozeman Trail was established in 1863 by John Bozeman and John Jacobs as a shortcut to the Montana goldfields. It started from Virginia City, at Adler Gulch, in Montana, heading southward across Wyoming and the Powder River country where it junctioned with the California-Oregon Trail following the North Platte River in central Wyoming.Approximately, one thousand emigrants a year traveled the trail between 1863 and 1866. They traveled on foot, on horseback or by wagons, usually the Prairie Schooner was drawn by teams of mules or oxen. The trail, 530 miles long, was traveled primarily during the summer months, at the pace of approximately 20 miles per day.Because of the continuous Indian attacks between 1866 and 1868, travel on the trail was reduced to freight and military wagons. The Treaty of 1868 closed the trail to emigrant use and the advance of the Trans-Continental Railroad eliminated its importance as a shortcut. The trail was used by General Crook during the Sioux Wars of 1876.Sections of the trail have been replaced, first by stage roads or cultivated fields, and then by highways. Even undisturbed sections have disappeared. The Bozeman Trail was never used as heavily as other historic roads and natural erosion has filled many of the existing wagon ruts.The long depression before you is an undisturbed section of the Bozeman Trail.