This feasibility study, authorized by Congress in 2009, is considering several questions:
1. Are the Chisholm and Great Western routes established by historic use and are they nationally significant?
2. Are the routes sufficiently well known to provide the potential for historical
interpretation and appreciation?
3. Should the Chisholm and Great Western cattle trails be designated as a National Historic Trail, to be added to the National Trails System?
* indicates the current step in the planning process
Step 1. Conduct public scoping
Step 2. Gather route data and determine national significance
Step 3. Develop preliminary alternatives
Step 4. Prepare draft study/environmental document for internal National Park Service review
Step 5. Prepare draft study/environmental document for public review
Step 6. Analysis of public comment
Step 7. Prepare final study/environmental document
Step 8. Release final study/environmental document to Congress *
The National Park Service is studying the Chisholm and Great Western cattle trails, which refers to the routes followed by upwards of ten million cattle as they traveled northbound from southern Texas to Kansas and adjacent destinations between 1867 and the 1880s.