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National Historic Oregon Trail Interpretive Center
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: The National Historic Oregon Trail Interpretive Center offers living history demonstrations, interpretive programs, exhibits, multi-media presentations, special events, and more than four miles of interpretive trails. We offer a variety of interpretive programs and special exhibits year-round. One mile of well-preserved ruts lie on the Interpretive Center grounds, and are accessible by the trails or from a turnout on Highway 86 about a half-mile west of the Center's entrance.
Springfield, OR
Level Contributor
42 reviews
16 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 21, 2013

Sixty-some years ago, as a Nebraska farm boy, I walked down the wagon ruts where the Oregon Trail crossed Nebraska about an hour's drive from our farm. It was interesting, but little did I know that three years later, crop failures would force our family to auction off all the farm equipment and most household items, load remaining items in a "borrowed" farm truck and a '49 Plymouth and follow the Oregon Trail to Oregon's Willamette valley.

Walking through the diorama and exhibits at the Center reminded me that,even though the pioneers and my family shared similar anxieties, uncertainties and hopes, our emigration was s-o-o-o-o much easier. And our life in Oregon has been such a blessing that we'd probably never have received, had those thousands of folks not endured the hardships of "The Trail" to make Oregon the welcome place we came to in 1954.

I don't expect others visiting the Center to experience the same emotions that choked me up, but I believe almost everyone will enjoy the realism of the dioramas and the variety of exhibits and presentations. The admission fees are modest and the NPS staffers keep the place well maintained and spotlessly clean.

Visited September 2012
4 Thank kennuf
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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414 reviews from our community

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North, Idaho
Level Contributor
33 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“Beautiful building and view...worth a visit”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 13, 2013

The only reason I didn't give a five was because I'm not really a history person. Immediately upon parking you are able to see panoramic views of the valley. It was a really beautiful vantage point. Walking up to the entrance we saw four rabbits running aroud and that was very exciting for my 2 year old. Being the off season my family was the only ones there and I think that was WELL worth it! The displays were so intriquate and life like and we were really able to soak it in. There were interactive exhibits the my 13 and 2 year old son enjoyed. We spent about an hour and a half in the museum. It was a great way to spend a cold winter morning.

Visited January 2013
Thank serchin4beaches
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Aloha, Oregon
Level Contributor
39 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
“Step into the past, and it wasn't a blast”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 10, 2013

It's been a few years since we were at the interpretive center. It is a few miles north of Baker City, but well worth the time. You can just about taste the dust and smell the livestock the exhibits are so real. I'll never forget the exhibit where a young mother is wailing over the grave of her young one who didn't make it. Made me want to cry. It is good to step into the past and see what those who went before us endured. May we have their mettle. We were there last in 2002, so parts of this display may have changed since then.

Visited February 2012
1 Thank mugshotmike
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
116 reviews
29 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
“Get out of your "rut" and see this place”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 11, 2012

We were sort of doing the Oregon Trail kind of backwards, so it was special to stop off and see this place.

The center is on top of a hill with a great view of the path the settlers took in this area. YES you can see the real ruts/trail which is pretty neat, however it's more interesting to view the timeline and story of the travelers journey. You could spend a LOT of time here and really dig in on the history, OR if you are pressed for time you can get an idea of their struggles with their life size mock trail inside.

This isn't a park/center that you'll go out of your way to visit, like the Grand Canyon, but the history is amazing. As part of the Oregon Trail that goes through several states and sites, this center really gives you a great impression of what these folks had to go through. You could spend an hour or several here, as there are some nice trails to hike and see the ruts.

If you don't have a national parks pass it's only a few bucks to enjoy.

What ever you do...make sure to take time to actually walk down and visit the ruts and see the actual trail the settlers took. After viewing this center you'll think how lucky you are to be on a nice interstate able to go 80+MPH.

Visited November 2012
1 Thank Austinmike28
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Baker City Oregon
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Oregon's history embraced”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 4, 2012

Baker City is well known for its history. The Oregon Trail Interpretive Center embraces that history and takes each visitor back into history. The Museum has many exhibits that caption how people had traveled and lived on the Oregon Trail. Around the museum there are many trails that can be seen that were actual routes of the Oregon trail. It is definitely an educational experience that takes a day if not two to view. A place where everyone can enjoy at any age.

1 Thank Jessica A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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