Oregon Trail and Life Legacy

Oregon Trail Kiosk in Idaho
Oregon Trail Kiosk in Idaho

On our recent vacation to Idaho we found a highway rest area that happened to be an important area for the Oregon Trail.

No major battle happened here except the battle of personal will which as I grow older becomes the greatest battle of all

As I had mentioned in yesterday’s post there were some hardships along the way for our American pioneers. But, at this rest area the story did not concentrate so much on the trials, but the victory.

There victory was won by making it up the rocky, steep incline onto the southern flats of Idaho.  While part of me wants to say the going was easier for a while, it really wasn’t easy.  If you don’t remember your American history, the Oregon Trail was full of trials.  Most were walking, few were riding in the carts.  Many of the carts were pulled by oxen or mules, not beautiful horses. No more fluffy feather beds, you slept on bedrolls on the ground or in the back of the wagon and there weren’t fancy dinners.  It was camping out for the 2000 mile journey.

The journey to the west would usually take 4 months if everything went smooth.

Four months of daily trials.

That fact alone leaves me simply amazed at our American legacy – a four month journey where you knew every day was really a trial of life and death.  A trial in order to take your family to a new life.

Our vacation journey actually started in Boise, ID but during the expansion westward, Boise was the 400 mile stretch.  At Ft. Boise their journey still had 400 more miles and usually by this time they were there in September.  Their continued westward journey was a battle and race against time to beat any early Fall snows.  (If you remember your history, it was an early Fall snow that stranded the Donner party).

So, I’m reminded of the battle of personal will that our American pioneers conquered.  Of course, some didn’t conquer.  Some turned back. Some died during battle due to sickness, injuries or attacks.

But those that battled their daily personal will, either by their own will, stubbornness or sheer necessity of survival and WON conquered the battle of their mind.

And that’s where the battle of personal will begins and ends…in our mind.

If you have some battle of will that you are struggling with, I encourage you to not give up.
Begin today, just as our American pioneers of making your plan on how to conquer the battle.

Preparing for the Battle of Will

1. Clearly define what battle you need to conquer (Are you filled with worry? Are you unsure of your purpose in life? Are these new empty nest years filling worry and maybe you are little scared? Maybe you are excited but just don’t know what you need, or suppose, to do?)
2. Make a plan of action
3. Gather the tools and supplies you need.
4. Begin your journey

Over the next week, I’ll be sharing some hints, ideas and ways you can prepare for and conquer your own personal battle!

Also, if you were interested in the topic of The Oregon Trail, I’ve got some books to recommend.

Hugs and feathers from the nest~~()~~

Kim Steadman is the COOP (Chief Online Operating Person) for The Re-Feathered Nest. A place of encouragement for moms entering the Empty Nest Zone who find they need to RePurpose and ReDesign their lives now that the kids have flown the coop. Kim can be found on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/TheRefeatheredNest and on Google+ at +Kim.



  • Megan

    I love reading about history so I’m gonna check out those books! Great info, and I love your plan of action steps!

  • Nate

    Whatever it is that we desire we need a plan of action. Desire and will does us no good if we don’t take the action. If it’s an unfamiliar territory it doesn’t hurt to take baby steps. Baby steps lead to progress and progress leads to results. Thanks for the reminder!

  • Susan Schiller

    What a great vacation, to travel the Oregon Trail! To learn the history of the land is very interesting, to me. I often look at the rolling hills in the Plains states and wonder how our ancestors endured the trials, the tears, and the agony. But to do it together must have also brought its joys as they conquered each hill, forded each river. I can barely imagine what it was like, but sometimes like today, when I pass an Amish buggy with the drivers sitting in the cold front seat while I’ve got the heater running full blast, it makes me think that they are the smarter ones, for they are developing so much strength of character, fortitude, and strength!

    Thanks for sharing this – I look forward to coming back!!!

  • Kelly Fedio

    Thanks for the words of encouragement Kim! Life is indeed a series of battles, personal and professional. The key is rising to the occasion and having a plan to conquer and surpass each new battle as we face it.

  • Ree

    Reading or thinking about the kind of struggles the pioneers had to face certainly puts things like having to learn a new computer program in perspective.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.