Following the Nez Perce Trail, 2nd ed: A Guide to the Nee-Me-Poo National Historic Trail with Eyewitness Accounts

Cheryl Wilfong
Winding through Montana, Wyoming, Idaho, and Oregon, the Nez Perce Historical Trail covers a lot of ground and a lot of history. Cheryl Wilfong's guide does the same, providing practical nuts & bolts information on how, when, and where to navigate the trail, plus a chronological history of the flight of the Nez Perce. It's a well-balanced combination of details both pragmatic and poetic. How much ground you choose to cover depends on your time, stamina, and type of vehicle. There are backroads, jeep trails, private ranch roads, and hiking trails, and there are highway routes that'll get you close without sending you off among the sagebrush. Even avid Trail buffs, however, rarely do more than a segment or two at a time, and the guide is structured such that you can pick up any leg of the journey and know easily where you are, logistically as well as in terms of "The Story:quot;--a 20-page history of the Nez Perce Nation from "time beyond memory" to 1885 when the Nez Perce were all consigned to reservations. The Trail is split into 13 segments, each with its own chronology, terrain, and travel plan. The fifth leg, for example, is the Lolo Trail, from Kamiah, Idaho to Lolo, Montana. Over a century ago it saw the journey of Nez Perce from July 1 through July 16, 1877, including the Battle of Clearwater. Covering 56 miles and with alternative routes for Mainstream, Adventurous, and Intrepid travelers (Wilfong's classifications for people in RVs, cars, and jeeps), the chapter contains specific history of the trail segment, snippets of first-hand accounts, and detailed directions as to which gravel road to take to the Mount Idaho Cemetery or the Clearwater Battleground site. Beautifully written and educational, this is a lovely book for both historians and travelers. --Stephanie Gold

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