Woods Cross, Bountiful, West Bountiful and Surrounding Areas

Southern Utah History Follow up….Robber’s Roost…..

I posted an article last week on Butch Cassidy and the Robber’s Roost Country of Southern Utah.  I described it as a vast area of broken canyons and little water.  When I said vast, I probably should have said huge.  Russel Ray in his comments, said that he didn’t realize that Butch Cassidy spent much time in Utah.  The area of the Robber’s Roost basically followed the “Outlaw Trail.”  This is a trail or series of trails that went from Montana to Mexico, that were used by outlaws and rustlers. 

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The Robbers Roost of Butch Cassidy’s gang depended on where they were, from the Hole in the Wall in Wyoming, down to Browns Hole along the Green River and continued through Western Colorado and Eastern Utah down as far as Northern Arizona and Northern New Mexico.  Like I said earlier it was huge! 

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Butch Cassidy’s real genius lay in the fact that he planned his escape routes into this area, by arranging with ranchers along the way to put up a relay of horses, that were well fed and watered.  He and his gang were able to escape by changing to fresh horses every so often while the posse’s chasing them were doing so on worn out mounts. 

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They would buy or steal good horses, find a rancher that didn’t ask them any questions and pay them to pasture and feed their horses, and know that every so often, that rancher would find that an entire new herd of horses would be in his pasture some morning.  When that happened, don’t ask any questions, just keep feeding them and taking care of them.  They paid these ranchers well at the time to do this for them. 

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It made it very difficult for the chasing posse to keep up with fresh horses, and once the posse’s water was gone, the chase was over.  Another part that helped them was that didn’t often stay in one place, that was why their “Robber’s Roost” was so vast.  If the law didn’t know where you were, they had a much more difficult time catching you.  Anyway, I hope that this additional information helps understand these posts!

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