Learn about the importance of Warner Ranch and Mission San Luis Rey as they make their way to San Diego and how our local Temecula area plays into the bigger picture of Southern California.

Would you like to join us? We look forward to meeting you! Our Southern Trails Chapter of the Oregon-California Trails Association would like to sponsor this event at no charge to the public, but a donation to the Southern Trails Chapter will be appreciated.

The Army of the West was organized in 1846 with about 500 men and about 30 women, in 5 Companies with a goal to help establish a Wagon Road from Santa Fe, New Mexico to San Diego, California. They were also known as the Mormon Battalion and their trek took them from Council Bluffs, Iowa all the way to San Diego walking more than 2000 miles for the most part. All of this was in an effort to help win the Mexican American war and General Stephen W. Kearny needed the new route, known as Cooke’s Wagon Road as a thoroughfare for the southern trail to California for the Mail Line and the Butterfield Overland Stage.

This important time in history between 1846 and 1848 includes noteworthy events in western history including the discovery of gold at Sutter’s Mill. The building of Cooke’s Wagon Road turned the old Indian trails from a path to a wagon road with some remarkable feats of engineering and effort.

Some of this amazing history is right here in Temecula under our feet. Learn more about the historic trails that run through our area and a chance to see some of them first hand! Hear from local experts on the topics as we explore the past and present.

See the Gap