And no, you won't die of dysentery while checking them out! 

The Oregon Trail had to be one of my favorite computer games when I was a kid, but I was absolutely horrible at getting my entire party from Independence, Missouri to Willamette Valley in Oregon. The health status of everyone in my wagon always seem to be "very poor." I mean why did my sister come down with typhoid? How did my best friend break a leg just sitting in a wagon? Why did a thief steal six of my oxen?! I don't know. So I went hunting. Shooting the buffalo in this game was really the only fun part between leaving Independence and eventually getting that uplifting message "Everyone in your party has died. Many wagons fail to make it all the way to Oregon."

It wasn't until 2015, when the Internet Archive posted a whole bunch of old school video games online that I realized that Fort Boise was actually one of the check-in points near the end of the game. The choice to include Fort Boise in the game wasn't random.  Many early pioneers crossed through the Gem State on their way to the west coast and some of the original wagon tracks can still be seen at Three Island Crossing State Park in Glenns Ferry.

According to Only in Your State, Three Island Crossing is where many tried to cross the Snake River (hopefully your wagon didn't tip and dump a whole bunch of bullets and half your food supply.) In the 20th Century, it's a place where you can go to see replicas of those original wagons and learn about the real struggles pioneers experience along Idaho's stretch of The Oregon Trail. There's a whole trail system that runs around the park and education center and people say that some of the original wagon ruts can still be in the dirt along those trails.

It's a short day trip (72 miles) from Boise and totally worth checking out if you're a history buff. For more information on the park click HERE! 

And for the record, yes. I'm still bitter that I ALWAYS died in the video game version of The Oregon Trail. Extremely bitter.

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