9:00 - 32.1 miles / an hour 4 minutes - 10:04
Madonna of the Trail
There are 12 Madonna of the Trail statues located across the country. These statues are placed along the route of the National Old Trails highway. They commemorate the spirit and lives of pioneer women who sacrificed much to make the journey west. These statues depict a woman with a child in her arms and a child clinging to her skirt. One of these statues is located along the Santa Fe Scenic and Historic Byway in Colorado. Located in Lamar, the statue was dedicated in September 1928. The site where the statue stands was once a frequently visited way station along the Santa Fe Trail.
10:04 - 1.4 miles / 2 minutes - 10:06
Santa Fe Trail Marker
This marker was donated in 1906 by the Daughters of the American Revolution of the State of Colorado. The Santa Fe Trail was a major route for settlers heading west between 1822 and 1872. This marker is on the Mountain Branch section of the trail.
10:06 - 46.6 miles / an hour 33 minutes - 11:40
Bent's Old Fort
William and Charles Bent and Ceran St. Vrain built the original Bent's Fort in 1833. This adobe fort was built to trade with the plains Indians and trappers in the area. Trading became so successful that additional forts were built to the north and south. This fort was one of the only major permanent white settlements along the Santa Fe Trail. Because of this, the fort provided many explorers, adventurers, and the US Army with supplies, repairs, food, and water. During the Mexican-American war in 1846, the fort was the staging area for Colonel Stephen Watts Kearny's "Army of the West." The fort was later abandoned in 1849 because of disease and various disasters. The fort was recreated using diaries, paintings, archaeological excavations, and original sketches.
11:40 - 7.8 miles / 15 minutes - 11:55
Koshare Indian Museum & Kiva
The Koshare Indian Museum and Kiva hosts the Koshare dancers.
Every summer and winter, the dancers perform authentic Plains and
Pueblo Indian dances for audiences. Koshares are not an Indian
tribe, but are an integral part of Pueblo society. Different
artist's work and various artifacts collected from different areas
is displayed at the museum. Various artifacts, such as baskets,
pottery, weapons, jewelry, textiles, and clothing are all displayed
at the museum.
11:55 - 13.9 miles / 27 minutes - 12:23
Sierra Vista Overlook
The Santa Fe Trail was an important transportation route for
many making their way westward and south. Travelers along the trail
would look for any known landmarks and set their sights on that
during the long, arduous journey.
The Spanish Peaks were one such landmark, and these peaks come
into view along the Sierra Vista Overlook. The area remains much as
it did back then, and the views that you will be able to see are
similar to those the early travelers saw. The changing horizon from
plains to mountains is visible along this trail, with the Rock
Mountains rising in view to the west and the expansive prairie to
the east. You can also follow a three-mile section of the Santa Fe
National Historic Trail to Timpas Picnic Area. Look for the stone
posts which mark the trail, beginning from the shelter.
13:23 - 5.7 miles / 11 minutes - 13:35
Trinidad Lake State Park
Trinidad Lake is a spot for recreational enthusiasts from all
over. Fishing, hiking, boating, wildlife viewing, windsurfing,
water-skiing, and hunting are all available. Located in the
southwestern section of Colorado, this warm climate is ideal for
enjoying the outdoors. Various species of wildlife may be spotted
throughout the park such as turkey, coyote, and deer. Fish species
that may be found in the lake include rainbow and brown trout,
largemouth bass, channel catfish, walleye, crappie, and bluegill.
Hikers may select a short walk near the Visitor Center, or they may
choose to explore the primitive backcountry areas.
13:35 - 152.8 miles / 5 hours 5 minutes - 18:40
Santa Fe Trail Interpretive Center and Museum
Art exhibits and artifacts pertaining to the Santa Fe Trail and early pioneering life make this museum a must-see.
20:40 - 174.6 miles / 5 hours 49 minutes - 15:30
Fort Union National Monument
Between 1850 and 1865 three forts were built on the site where
the remains of Fort Union now stand. The third Fort is the one
still visible today. In its prime it was almost a city in itself.
Erected in 1863 and 1869, and modified somewhat during the 1870s,
it consisted of the military post of Fort union and the Fort Union
Quartermaster Depot and served as the principal supply base for the
Military Department of New Mexico. Arriving from the east over the
Santa Fe Trail, shipments of food, clothing, arms, and ammunition,
as well as tools and building materials, were unpacked and stored
in warehouses, then assigned as needed to other forts. Like most
southwestern military posts, Fort Union was not enclosed by a wall
The ruins of Fort Union are an impressive memorial to the men
and women who won the West. It is difficult, however, to look at
these melted adobe walls and the few chimneys that rise above
ground level and realize that this was once the largest U.S.
military installation on the 19th-century southwestern frontier.
The stone foundations of the buildings are still visible, as are
some of the adobe walls.
16:30 - 0.1 miles / - 16:30
Pecos National Historic Park
Pecos preserves 10,000 years of history, including the ancient pueblo of Pecos, two Spanish Colonial Missions, Santa Fe Trail sites and the site of the Civil War Battle of Glorieta Pass.
18:30 - 123.1 miles / 4 hours 6 minutes - 11:36
Santa Fe Trail - end