From Alkali Springs, called by many pioneers Sulphur Springs, the emigrants traveled on to Birch Creek, which offered much needed water and grass for their livestock. First named "Riviere aux Bouleaux" by French-Canadian fur trappers, here travelers found willows, not birch.
Continuing from Birch Creek, the parade of iron-rimmed wagon wheels inscribed ruts upon the landscape as they churned to the Snake River, only four miles distant. this was the origin of the gentle swale before you, a lasting signature of that vast emigration.
Sunday, 27th We traveled today 22 miles and camped near Indians again. Lucretia bought her a pair of moccasins.
Monday, 28th Today we traveled twelve miles from camp on Birch Creek and camped near Burnt River. The Indians went on and left us. We burned a wagon for wood. — Elizabeth Austin, August, 1854
Drove from the Sulphur Springs to Birch Creek, eleven miles distant. Road good and weather fine. Country poor, but is beginning to shell out some better grass than usual. Mountains destitute of timber seem to cover the face of the country as far as the eye can penetrate the ethereal blue. Sick are getting better. — John Kerns, August 24, 1852
Tues Sept 7 Laid by today. Found ourselves most all sick from the effects of drinking sulphur water...
Mon Sept 13 Just found myself able to write since the last date. We have laid by ever since excepting we moved three miles to the Snake River to get better water. Found plenty of feed. The Indians have visited us every day and brought us fish. They appear perfectly friendly... — Martha S. Read. 1852