Pony Express Trail
National Backcountry Byway
National Historic Trail
Pony Express Trail National Backcountry Byway
Bureau of Land Management, Salt Lake District Office
2370 South 2300 West; Salt Lake City, Utah 84119
Phone: 801-977-4300; E-mail
Pony Express National Historic Trail
National Park Service
324 S. State Street, Suite 200; Salt Lake City, Utah 84111
Phone: 801-741-1012, ext. 119; Fax: 801-741-1102
The Pony Express Trail National Backcountry Byway traverses 133 miles through western Utah. Covering topography from barren desert mountains to wide basins, this route follows one of historical importance. This National Backcountry Byway retraces the Pony Express and the Overland Stage route, as well as a leg of the Lincoln Highway, the nation’s first coast-to-coast auto road. Interpretive sites and ruins help you relive the Pony Express’s 19 months of operation (from 1860 to 1861) and stagecoach travel. You can view wildlife year round at Fish Springs National Wildlife Refuge.
The content of this page was accurate on the date of its posting; it may have changed since that time. We recommend that you contact local authorities for current information. Our pages are only intended as a beginning to your journey.
Varies (within Utah) from 4300 to over 5000 feet.
Ruins at Boyd Station and Simpson Springs Station; vault toilets near Simpson Springs Station; campground near Simpson Springs. No drinking water available along the trail.
To follow the Pony Express Trail, head west from the town of Fairfield (located west of Utah Lake) through Faust, over Lookout Summit, to pass Simpson Springs and Fish Springs. The road then travels through the Snake Valley to Callao and northwest to Ibapah. There are no services along this 133-mile byway. Allow five to six hours travel time with interpretive stops.
Map Coordinates (NAD83):
- Boyd Station: 39 50.608N; 113 33.136W
- Black Rock Station: 39 52.678N; 113 16.342W
- Simpson Springs Station: 40 02.367N; 112 47.286W
Hot summers and cold winters.
Regulations and Precautions
- This is a graded gravel and dirt road can become unstable when wet and is safer to drive in summer and fall, when it is dry. Four wheel drive is recommended for exploring adjacent canyons and washes. Areas may look solid; however, getting stuck is very easy.
- Watch for flash flooding during the thunderstorm season and be very careful during extreme hot and cold periods.
- Desert terrain is deceptive in distance and orientation, so study the map carefully.
- Come prepared for desert travel. Bring extra water and plenty of gas. There is no gas available between Vernon and Wendover, although gas is sometimes available in Ibapah.
- Backcountry Considerations
- Backcountry Emergencies
- Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Restrictions and Regulations
- Encountering Wild Animals
- Pets in the Parks and Backcountry
Archaeological Resources Protection Act Hotline: 800-227-7286.
There are no established hiking trails along this route.