When Mormon pioneers settled Parowan on 13 January 1851 they built a wagon road to bring timber from the mountains. It eventually extended south to Cedar Breaks. However, the pioneers were somewhat indifferent to the scenery, for eroded canyons were interruptions to travel. Full development of the area's tourist potential awaited automobile roads, campsites, and an organized, concerted promotional effort. After World War I, road funds became available under the Shakleford Act. Residents of Iron and Kane Counties applied for construction of a road from Highway 89 to Cedar City. Construction of the Cedar-Long Valley Road began in 1920 and was completed in 1923. A three-mile spur provided access for visitors to Cedar Breaks.
Meanwhile, in 1919, S.A. Halterman took the first auto to Cedar Breaks via the old wagon road in Parowan Canyon. By 1921 improvements to this route allowed Halterman to begin taking visitors to the Breaks on weekly trips. In 1923 the Union Pacific railroad built a thirty-three-mile-long branch line to the area from Lund; it reached Cedar City 17 June 1923. Utah Parks, a subsidiary of Union Pacific, soon built a lodge and cabins at the Breaks. They subsequently were removed in 1972.