The Santa Fe Trail followed this unnavigable river for almost 100 miles in what is now southwestern Kansas. Some brave souls continued across the Oklahoma panhandle with the Cimarron Cutoff, but lack of water kept many away. The panhandle portion of the Cimarron is sometimes called the Dry Cimarron River because its water can disappear entirely under the sand in the river bed. The old Chisholm Trail also crossed the Cimarron near present day Dover, Oklahoma. 
Rising in the mountains of New Mexico, the Cimarron meanders through Colorado, Kansas and Oklahoma. The western portion of the river has more abundant water than the eastern portion.