History of Echo Canyon, Utah
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Echo Canyon, (Summit) begins near Echo Reservoir near the town of Echo. It is where Old Hwy 30 Echo Canyon Road and Echo Dam Road meet. Todays more recognizable junction would be the intersection of I-84 and I-80. Traveling east on I-80, 24.8 miles, (39.91 km) the canyon ends near the town of Wahsatch, near the southwestern corner of Wyoming about 11 miles (17.702 km) west of Evanston. Echo creek flows through the canyon and drains southwest into the Weber River. Many travelers came through the canyon: it became a primary Indian and trapper's trail. Later pioneers passed along this road. The enitial wagon tracks down Echo Canyon were those of the 1846 Harlan-Young party. Shortly thereafter followed the doomed Donner-Reed party on their way to California (February/March 1847). 1847 saw the Mormons travel the same route. Others traveling through here were Johnson's Army in the (1850s) the Overland Stage, the Pony Express (1860), and finally the railroad.

An interesting echo phenominon entertained travelers as they plodded through the canyon. In his journal (16 July 1847 )William Clayton makes the following observation: "There is a very singular echo in this ravine, the rattling of wagons resembles carpenters hammering at boards inside the highest rocks. The report of a rifle resembles a sharp crack of thunder and echoes from rock to rock for some time. The lowing of cattle and braying of mules seem to be answered beyond the mountains. Music, especially brass instruments, have a very pleasing effect and resemble a person standing inside the rock imitating every note. The echo, the high rocks on the north, high mountains on the south with the narrow ravine for a road, form a scenery at once romantic and more interesting than I have ever witnessed"

At the Echo Juction one can take the old Echo Canyon Road which runs east, parralel to I-80. Along the way are numerous landmarks where historical events took place.

See:, Utah Place Names; John W. Van Cott;, Echo Canyon Guide.

G. William Wiersdorf

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