Conservation and Trapping News

Trapper, explorer and guide Antoine Leroux left mark on Colorado
Nov 29, 2022 06:12 ET

In 1853, as Capt. John Gunnison led his expedition across western Colorado — including the first wheeled vehicles to cross this part of the state — to assess the possibility of a central railroad route to California, he depended heavily on 52-year-old guide Antoine Leroux of Taos.

Because of his experience, Gunnison rejected another guide in favor of Leroux, even though he knew Leroux couldn’t make the entire journey.

Joaquin Antoine Leroux spent nearly 40 years in the Southwest as a trapper, trader and guide. He led four military expeditions from New Mexico to California, along four different routes. And many times he crossed western Colorado, trekking through the San Luis Valley, over Cochetopa Pass to what was later called the Gunnison River Valley, to the Uncompahgre Valley, then north to the Grand Valley and west into Utah.

Full story here.