Instructor Spotlight

Instructor Spotlight

Jerry Eichhorst is the President of the Idaho Chapter, Oregon-California Trails Association (IOCTA). He has been active in preserving and researching the Oregon Trail across Idaho for over 22 years. He discovered 30 miles of an alternate route known as the North Alternate Oregon Trail and developed the Main Oregon Trail Back Country Byway, which follows the Oregon Trail from Glenns Ferry to Boise.

He is an emigrant diary researcher with an extensive collection of over 2600 accounts of travelers crossing Idaho.  He has been published in the Overland Journal ten times, twice winning the prestigious Merrill Mattes award for writing. Jerry was a recipient of the Idaho State Historical Society Esto Perpetua Award in 2021.

Jerry regularly leads outings on the emigrant trails in Idaho as well as occasionally in Wyoming and eastern Oregon. He has found many emigrant graves and uses certified cadaver dogs to verify human remains.

Jerry has taught for Community Ed for over 11 years, and his classes always have many students! This Winter, he will be offering 3 classes: OREGON TRAIL: WYOMING TO FORT HALL; MAIN OREGON TRAIL BACK COUNTRY BYWAY; and NORTH ALTERNATE OREGON TRAIL. Enroll early! These classes always fill up fast.

Jerry offers a free tour of the Main Oregon Trail Back Country Byway to class participants in mid-April.

For more information, please see the IOCTA website: