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Old West Routes
 

Use the Route tab to explore options by desired time and pace on the trail.  

Our Scouting Reports & GPS Tracklogs retrace the paths blazed to old west frontiers by early pioneers and prospectors. They left an ideal overland explores playground in their wake; remote pack trails, wagon roads, water routes, ghost towns, boom camp survivors, mine relics, colorful history and a spirit for adventure that inspires. 

 
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North American Overland Journeys
 

Location tabs are the fastest way to find geographic regions of interest and interconnected trails.

All of our Scout Reports and GPS Tracklogs flow continuously from one interesting region to another, state-to-state, province-to-province, nation-to-nation using as little pavement as possible, and when we do, it tends to be byways versus freeways.

 
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Go Deeper: Foot, Bike, Horseback & Watercraft
 

For many, self-reliant vehicle overlanding is the adventure. Others Go Deeper. 

All our Scouting Expeditions provide opportunity to hike, bike and backpack. Many routes also provide equestrian and watercraft journey extensions. We’ve flagged some favorites to inspire you to take your overland adventure to another level.

 
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Explore what fascinates you the most.
 

Every Scouting Expedition is researched to travel through Old West Frontiers rich with interesting trails, tales and relics. 

The roar of the rush has subsided, but imprints linger; ghost towns, abandoned rails turned to trails, surviving boomtowns that retain the charm of yesteryear continue to outfit today’s adventurers with supplies, historical lodging and spirits. Look deeper, and you will find signs of Native America.

 
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Choose Your Pace & Challenge
 

As most of our Scouting Expedition GPS Tracklogs are interlinked, the base route is most often Easy or Moderate, but we explore Difficult options along the way. Some can be overgrown and sometimes barley visible, making them that much more appealing for those looking to build that into thier own adventure. Three broad categories are used but beware, what is Easy today can be Difficult tommorow, due to environmental conditions (see Go Prepared). 

 
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Get Lost in the Journey
 

One of the greatest pleasures associated with 4WD vehicle overlanding is the ability to wander at will, as one trail leads to another in a maze of options. However, advance research can help you explore routes that fascinate you the most and can make the most of your time.

There is nothing wrong with using a map and compass for guidance. In fact, you should always have them with you. But GPS technology and affordable mapping software really empower you to free-flow and always have a sense of where you are, at all times.

 
Most of BC’s Kootenay Lake 260km shoreline is still only accessible by watercraft, as it was during the Sternwheeler era.
Go Deeper: Kayak/ Canoe/ Raft/ Sail
Take It to Another Level With Remote Water Routes & Marine Camping

Many frontier water routes were pioneered in BC and Americas Pacific North West by French Canadian voyageurs looking for a river network that would lead to the Pacific Ocean where furs could be taken to market on ocean bearing ships. In more arid regions, frontiersman followed rivers, creeks and lakes for practical reasons, the most important of which was drinking water. Routes close to water were also more likely to have vegetation for livestock and attract game that, in turn, could be hunted or trapped. When trails and railways encountered impenetrable mountain ranges and steep-walled canyons, Sternwheelers linked land routes. Consequently, many of our Trek Legs travel along or near water and have been flagged for paddlers, sailors and rafters.

Trek Legs

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Wallace to Eureka MT

Relive golden-era of railway on Rail-trail Route of The Hiawatha, starting at post-card perfect train station in Wallace, an old-world town you won’t want to leave. Carry on through scenic valleys and mountain passes to 1860’s Coeur d’Alene Mining District.

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David Thompson & Banff Parkway

TREK LEG ROUTE SLIDESHOW and GPS/GPX Maps are ACTIVE.

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Lake Powell & The Colorado River Canyon

TREK LEG ROUTE SLIDESHOW and GPS/GPX Maps are ACTIVE.

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Red Rock Canyon, Backdoor to Vegas & Lake Mead

TREK LEG ROUTE SLIDESHOW and GPS/GPX Maps are ACTIVE.

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Rocky Mountain Backdoor to Canmore & Trunk Road

TREK LEG ROUTE SLIDESHOW and GPS/GPX Maps are ACTIVE.

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Cowboy Trail & Nanton Loop

TREK LEG ROUTE SLIDESHOW and GPS/GPX Maps are ACTIVE.

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Badlands Coal Towns & Ghost Towns

TREK LEG ROUTE SLIDESHOW and GPS/GPX Maps are ACTIVE.

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Glacier ‘Going To The Sun’ Road

TREK LEG ROUTE SLIDESHOW and GPS/GPX Maps are ACTIVE.

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Glacier ‘Going To The Sun’ Road

TREK LEG ROUTE SLIDESHOW and GPS/GPX Maps are ACTIVE.

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Boundary Badlands & Rangelands

TREK LEG ROUTE SLIDESHOW and GPS/GPX Maps are ACTIVE.

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Badlands & Red Deer Valley

TREK LEG ROUTE SLIDESHOW and GPS/GPX Maps are ACTIVE.

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Apache Trail & Superstitions

Trek Legs make it easy to dip in and out for a day and/or a night of dispersed camping on the way to Overland Expo or spend days on four different mining region trails leading to the heart of an 800 year old civilization and a true desert oasis along Grand Canyon.

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Perry Back Rd to Rossland

Perry Back Road follows the slow flowing part of the Slocan River, ideally suited to paddlers, floaters and swimmers. Bikers/hikers can take advantage of the extensive Rail-to-trail network on their way to the exciting gold rush city of Rossland.

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New Denver-Perry Back Rd.

Surrounded by rivers and lakeshores, the ‘Silvery Slocan’ feels like a mountainous coastal island forest, capped by rugged peaks. Old West false-front stores continue to outfit overlanders touring lakeshore boomtowns or deep wilderness.

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Ft. Fizzel to Wallace

Wallace is a gem worth spending some time in; resupply, dine and refresh your party at the Art-Deco Ryan Hotel before driving/biking through 14 cavernous tunnels and 9 high trestles of The Route of The Hiawatha nearby.

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Shoup to Ft. Fizzel

Route retraces Lewis & Clark’s aborted trip up the Salmon River and on to “Lost Trail Pass” where the Discovery Corp lost their way while traveling over the Continental Divide. Trek finishes at “Lolo Trail” a Nez Perce path used for their annual buffalo hunt.

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Bayhorse to Shoup Byway

As with all our routes, we avoid paved roads as much as possible in favor of less traveled backroads that go deeper into wilderness regions. In doing so in this series, we miss the nicest section of one of America’s most scenic two-lane paved byways.

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Grimes Pass to Bonanza

Travel three mountain passes and meadows to the Cape Horn region of the magnificent Sawtooth Mountains. Stanley’s old west log structures, the jagged mountains and Salmon River gateway are a magnet for outdoor enthusiasts.

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Atlanta to Idaho City

Route starts in Atlanta, just south of the Sawtooth Range and travels along four separate scenic river canyons to Idaho City, the most prosperous of all of the Boise Basin Gold Rush Camps; a survivor that continues to serve today’s overlanders.

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Owyhee Desert to Rome

Route travels across open desert historical trails used to reach the War Eagle Mines via Owyhee Crossing. Follow the river to Rome, past a series of column-like bluffs on Hill Beachy’s Stage Road and ‘Home Stations’ fortified during 1860’s Indian wars.

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Rome to Owyhee Canyon

Follow the route traveled by Chief Buffalo Horn, Jean Baptiste Charbonneau son of Sacajawea and the Silver City to Virginia City Stage passing the mystical ‘Pillars of Rome’ and on to the other ancient crossing of the Owyhee River at Three Forks and the remote deep shadowed canyons upriver.

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Kootenay Marine Camping

Serene and pristine, it’s rare to find such a wide array of secluded beaches that are open to the public for day use or overnight marine camping. Most of the 260-km/160-miles of shoreline is only accessible by watercraft, ideally suited to going deeper.

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Sasquatch Lake to Kaslo

Old mining wagon roads fan out from Ainsworth Hot Springs and Kalso providing access to the mountain wilderness above and Kokanee Glacier Park adventures. Historical Sternwheeler landings and marinas continue to launch watercraft of all kinds.

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Ft. Steele to Crawford Bay

Refresh your party at the 1873 St. Eugene Mission, turned resort. Choose the paved byway via Creston or take the gravel-dirt Grey Creek Pass over the top of the Selkirk range, down steep switchbacks to the West Kootenay and Crawford Bay.

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Pyramid Lake to Black Rock

Route leaves sandy beaches of Pyramid Lake to travel across remote desert open range trails to the infamous Black Rock Desert playa, a route first explored by The 1843 Frémont Expedition, before it was incorporated into the California Trail.

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Virginia City to NV Baja

Wallow in the old west glory of Virginia City, take a historical toll road and carry on wagon roads past Lousetown and Washington Mine to Pyramid Lake where you can drive along sandy Baja-like beaches until you find an ideal spot to camp.

OverlandFrontier.com Must Come To An End

It is with a heavy heart that we must advise our supporters that we are forced to close the Overland Frontier website. While the site was only open for one year, we started development many years earlier. Since that time the importance of a mobile friendly website has increased. We hope we can be back one day, with a new and improved resource for overland routes. We have so many more Treks, Journeys and Expeditions that we did not have time to showcase. We are anxious to find a new mobile-friendly channel to share these routes with other enthusiasts and we are open to ideas and partners; contact rogermercier@me.com

In the meantime follow our expeditions on Facebook