June 17, 2006 - Baker City, Oregon

After dropping Pete off, it was time to continue the journey northwest.  This RV was just taxiing in as I taxiied out.
Heading north northwest, I soon left the big Idaho valley and entered some mountains.  I thought I would see good ruts through this area since none of it was developed, but if they were there I missed them. 
Could those be ruts in the center of the image, running left to right over that hill?
Could these be ruts? 
I came out of the hills into another nice looking valley which contained Baker City. 
Coming out of the hills, I zoomed right by Flagstaff Hill, pictured below, on which the Oregon Trail Interpretive Center resides.  I knew this had to be it because of the five covered wagon in a circle next to the center.  Too bad this picture was blurry. 
The airport was just pass the Oregon Trail Center in the valley.  This picture is looking back toward the center.  The yellow arrow points to the center on Flagstaff Hill.  I landed at Baker City airport, walked into the FBO office, and the guy says right away, "Need the car?" 
I was at the Oregon Trail Interpretive Center less than 20 minutes after landing.  This Center was highly regarded in my Oregon Trail By Air book and I must say, it lived up to its descriptive.  It was the outstanding Oregon Trail museum of the entire trip. 
The had this long diorama of life on the trail.  Too bad my pictures came out so blurry; it was very realistic.  Hard to imagine little kids on an arduous trip like this. 
The would have to "yoke up" the oxen every morning. 
 
Not everyone completed the journey.
Besides the diorama, the museum had lots of video, artifacts, displays, hands-on stuff, and information -- from who made the trip, what they took, and where they came from -- to what they did when they got there.  If you want to learn about the mass migration of Americas to Oregon and California in the 1840-60s, this is the place.

Some of immigrants were so impressed with the Baker City area, that after they got to the Portland area, they decided to come back here and settle.   

 
Overlooking Baker City valley.  Those are the Blue mountains in the background. 
Looking southeast the way I flew in.
Heading back to the airport, I noticed a historic site marker.  Just off the road a little bit was this plaque which contained the best description of Oregon Trail ruts I have seen yet.  The trail ran by the southwest base of Flagstaff Hill and the center.
The trail amidst the sagebrush looking east.
 
The trail looking west.
Baker City airport.  Highly recommended for a cross-country stop. 
 
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