- from Pioneers
In the jumping-off town, a newly formed wagon train looked for a guide who knew the route.
No detailed road or trail maps existed. Each wagon train elected a leader called the wagon master. Most wagon trains left in late spring. They had to get through the mountains before snow blocked the passes. They also needed to reach Oregon in time to build homes before winter came. They couldn’t leave before April or May. That’s because grass had to be growing on the plains. Otherwise, their livestock wouldn’t have enough to eat.