The pioneers dealt with the weather,
diseases, trail and
common mistakes among a few. The heat, storms, rivers
and snow caused the trip to be hard, long and challenging. The pioneers
faced starvation, disease undrinkable water and accidents. They had
to rely on each other to survive the trip.
One of the difficult hardship was walking on the trail.
They determinedly walked the 2,000 mile trip across the country. One
of the reasons they had to walk was because the wagons were completely
filled. Secondly, riding in the wagon was bumpy and unpleasant.
Shoes became tattered and full of holes from walking
many miles. Their feet were torn and always seemed to be bleeding because
of the bad condition of their shoes. They were so determined to make
it across to Oregon City, Oregon that they were ready for anything that
came along their way even walking 2,000 miles.
The lay of the land was a challenge to
say the least. The path consisted of mountains, rivers, deserts and
ruts. Some of the ruts were worn as high as the height of middle of
the wheel. The people had to work together to cross the rivers, climb
or descend the mountains and deal with mud and dust.
Many died along the path to Oregon by
accidents, diseases or by some unusual faith. Graves lined the trail
from Independence to Oregon City.
Can you imagine how people felt, listening
to the creak of the wheels, tasting grit of the dust, smelling of
sweaty animals and enduring the weather while approaching the unknown?
Some of the landforms on The Oregon Trail
were long string of rivers, and natural landmarks.
These stopping points during the trail were mile markers to the pioneers.
The river crossing was deadly. If the wagon tipped over in the river,
the emigrant could lose their supplies, wagon and even their life.
Some hardships on the trip were just
common mistakes made by the pioneers. The lack of experience of
basic skills like driving the wagons caused various types of accidents
resulting in broken bones, serious injuries and sometimes death.
That inexperience caused wagons to "bunch up" making it
difficult for them to move. The wagon train was delayed because
some pioneers lacked the skills to successfully hatch up the oxen.
Those beginner decisions would possibly put them in danger, such
as taking the wrong route, getting stuck or not being able to control
the team. There were constant problems keeping the wagons and other
tools in working order. Animals would drift away or be stolen from