Boy Scouts and leaders from Troop 2640 spent 7-days and 6-nights on a high adventure trip through Wyoming and Utah. They traveled over 1,700 highway miles and hiked and crossed rivers and went rafting on the Green River near Vernal. The scouts were Kameron and Spencer Cox, Mark Larsen, Jaron Hafen, Nathan Reber, Kelton Humphries and leaders Spencer Lewis and David Everett.
At Rock Creek Hollow, a small stretch of grass land with willows on a craggy trail, they hiked along the Mormon Pioneer Trail in a cold rain visiting the monument with a one-word sermon, “Remember.” Another marker lists the names of 13 pioneers who after crossing Rocky Ridge, the highest point on the trail, died and were buried in a mass grave. The Willie handcart company was caught in a blizzard here in 1856. Rescue wagons helped save 430 of the 500 emigrants who crossed over Rocky Ridge to camp at Rock Creek.
From 6th Crossing on the Sweetwater River, the scouts hiked 10 miles and made 4 river crossings following the handcart and wagon trail. They stopped at split rock then hiked another mile in view of the same snowcapped peaks seen on the journey by the pioneers.
At Martin’s Cove, Wyoming, they trekked 6 miles crossing the Sweetwater River pulling and pushing their handcart. The scouts heard inspiring stories of the pioneers told by the guides at Martin’s Cove. Martin’s Cove, just a nook in the side of a mountain providing a little protection from the fierce biting wind, is the site where the Martin handcart company suffered extreme hardship and were caught in early snowstorm in October of 1856. There were 576 in the handcart company and although 145 perished and were buried in common graves, rescuers sent by Brigham Young
helped save 425 who made it on to Salt Lake Valley. Many of the 425 pioneers had frozen libs and suffered from starvation and exposure. The scouts visited the museum and memorial marker where are engraved the names of 1,000 plus members of the Martin and Willie handcart companies and the Hunt-Hodgetts wagon companies that traveled the trail and suffered hardships. The scouts then hiked to Devils’ Gate, a chasm in the rocks through which the Sweetwater river flows, enjoyed a swim in the river am camped at cherry creek for the night.
On Thursday they hiked to the top of Independence Rock, a 136-foot-high mammoth outcrop and geologic oddity to get a great view of the vast western plains where pioneers traveled in the 1840-60’s. They waded thru marshy areas at the base and explored cool puddles of water on the top. It was in 1812 that Robert Stuart, originator of the Oregon Trail, visited the site but it was William Sublette who arrived at the granite outcrop on July 4, 1830 who gave it the name of “Independence Rock”, in honor of America’s birthday. Travelers on the Mormon and Oregon trails tried to time their arrivals to coincide with the July 4th observance. Tangible reminders of the scouts’ ancestors are their family names engraved in the rock.
They stopped at Flaming Gorge Dam on their way to Steinaker Reservoir to go rafting. Rafting down the Green River through split rock canyon, they traveled about 8 miles and were able to get a good view of wildlife including deer, mountain goats with babies.
To view pictures and history of these sites https://history.lds.org/subsection/historic-sites/wyoming/sixth-crossing?lang=eng