October 12, 1805
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Aug 30, 1803 Sep 30, 1806

October 12, 1805


a fair cool morning wind from E    after purchasing all the drid fish those people would Spear from their hole in which they wer buried we Set out at 7 oClock and proceeded on

S. W.   3 miles    passed 4 Islands at 1½ miles 〈three〉 3 nearly op-
post    a bad rapid on the Lard Side of those Islands, and
Swift water around them to a Lard. point    passed a Stard
West   3 miles to a Lard Bend    passed a Small rapid & Island on
the Lard. also an Indian Cabin.
N. W.   2 miles to a Stard. Bend    the bottoms are narrow from the
points, the bends & high lands have Clifts of ruged rock to
the river, & bottoms
S. 70° W.   2 miles to a bend on the Stard. at a rapid Isd opsd.    passed a
rapid on the Std. Side of a Stoney Island, opsd. to which on
the Std. Side below the rapid a Small Creek [1] falls in    Saw
an Indian on the high land at a distance.    no timber in
South   2 miles to a pt. in Lard. bend    here the Plains become low on
both Sides    river about 400 yards wide
S. 30° W.   2 ½ miles to the mouth of a Creek Ente in a Lard. bend opsd. a
Small Island on the Lard Side
S. 85° W   2 ½ to the Stard. bend at a Swift place    about half the distance
of this course Cp L took Meridian altitd. on Ld. Side 72°
30' 0"
S. 10° W.   1 ½ to a Lard Bend, (low open country)
S. 88° W.   3 ½ to a Stard. Bend    wind S W. and hard.    plain country rise
gradually on each side    passed Island and rapid an Indian
house on the Stard. [2] Some Indians at it &c.
S. 60° W.   6 miles to a Stard. bend    passed an Isld. at 4 miles & one at
5 miles, Swift water, and Sholey
S. 30° W.   1 mile to a Lard bend    passd. a rapid at the upper pt. of a
Small Stoney Isd.
West   1 mile to a Stard. bend opsd. a Small Island Close under the
Lard Shore    passed a run on the Std. side.    here we Came
too to view a falls or very bad rapid imediately below
(Camped) which the Inds. informed us was very bad, we
found it bad. Sent our Small canoe over—

A fair Cool morning wind from the East.    after purchaseing every Speces of the provisions those Indians could Spare we Set out and proceeded on    at three miles passed four Islands Swift water and a bad rapid opposit to those Islands on the Lard. Side.    at 14½ miles passed the mouth of a large Creek on the Lard Side [3] opposit a Small Island here the Countrey assends with a gentle assent to the high plains, and the River is 400 yards wide    about 1 mile below the Creek on the Same Side took meridian altitude which gave 72° 30' 00" Latitude produced [blank] North    in the afternoon the wind Shifted to the S. W. and blew hard    we passed to day [blank] rapids Several of them very bad and came to at the head of one (at 30 miles) on the Stard. Side to view it before we attemptd. to dsend through it. The Indians had told us was verry bad—    we found long and dangerous about 2 miles in length, and maney turns necessary to Stear Clare of the rocks, which appeared to be in every direction. The Indians went through & our Small Canoe followed them, as it was late we deturmined to camp above untill the morning. [4]    we passed Several Stoney Islands today    Country as yesterday open plains, no timber of any kind a fiew Hack berry bushes & willows excepted, and but few drift trees to be found So that fire wood is verry Scerce— [5]    The hills or assents from the water is faced with a dark ruged Stone. [6] The wind blew hard this evening.—


Saturday 12th Oct. 1805.    a fair morning.    we Set out eairly, and proceeded on as usal.    passed a number of old fishing camps along the Shores.    high plains    no timber.    we came 35 miles this day and Camped on the Stard Side little above a bad rockey rapid.    our Small pilot canoe and the Indian canoe went over [the rapids?] this evening


Saturday 12th.    We had a fine morning and proceeded on early. Two of the Flathead chiefs remained on board with us, and two of their men went with the stranger [7] in a small canoe, and acted as pilots or guides. We saw some ducks and a few geese, but did not kill any of them. There is no four-footed game of any kind near this part of the river, that we could discover; and we saw no birds of any kind, but a few hawks, eagles and crows. At noon we halted, cooked and eat some fish and then proceeded on. The country and river this day is much the same in appearance as what we passed yesterday. A little before sunset we came to a bad rapid, which we did not wish to pass at night, so we encamped above on the north side, having made 30 miles.

Some of the Flathead nation [8] of Indians live all along the river this far down. There are not more than 4 lodges in a place or village, and these small camps or villages are 8 or 10 miles apart: at each camp there are 5 or 6 small canoes. Their summer lodges are made of willows and flags, and their winter lodges of split pine, almost like rails, which they bring down on rafts to this part of the river where there is no timber.


〈Thursday〉 Saturday 12th Oct. 1805.    a clear pleasant morning.    we Set out eairly and proceeded on as usal.    the country continues the Same as yesterday    Saw a nomber of old fishing Camps along the Shores.    the current Swift in Some places, but gentle in general.    about 12 oClock we halted to dine on the Lard. Shore.    could Scarsely find wood enofe to cook our victules.    Capt. Lewis took an Meridian observation.    we then proceeded on verry well    passed Several more fishing Camps.    the wind rose hard from the west    our general course west.    high clifts of rocks & high prarie on each Side.    this River is verry handsom and country pleasant but no timber at all.    we Came 35 miles this day and Camped on the Starbord Side at the head of a bad rockey rapid which we expect is difficult to pass.    the Indians canoe and our Small pilot canoe went over this evening.    we expect that we have got past the numerous flat head nation.    only the guides who are with us they tell us that in 2 days more we will come to another nation at a fork which comes in on the St. Side of the Columbian River.—

Saturday October 12th    We had a clear pleasant morning, & we set out early & proceeded on our Voyage down the River.    The Country has the same appearance as it had Yesterday.    we passed a number of old fishing Camps, lying along the Shores on both sides of the River, and found the current of the River run very swift in many places.    About 12 o'Clock A. M. we halted to dine on the South side of the River where we could scarcely find wood enough to Cook our provisions.    Captain Lewis took at this place a Meridian Observation and found this place to lay in Latitude 46° 29' 21 7/10S. North.    We continued our Voyage at 2 o'Clock P. M. & passed several more fishing Camps, lying on both sides of the River.    The wind rose & blew hard from the West.    We also passed high clifts of Rocks & high Priaries, both lying on each side of the River, & they had a handsome appearance.    The Country has a pleasant appearance this day, but no kind of timber is to be seen.    We came about 35 Miles this day, & encamped on the North side of the River, at the head of a bad Rockey rapid, where we expect to meet with difficulty in passing it.—    We got the Indians Canoe & our smallest Canoe over this rapid this evening.    We expect that we have passed the flatt head Nation, which were very numerous.    Our Guides who are Indians inform us, that in 2 days more sailing, that we shall come to another Nation of Indians, who reside near a fork of the River Columbia & that this fork lies on the South side of the said River.—

1. Penawawa Creek ("Brook" on Atlas map 73), near Penawawa, Whitman County, Washington. (back)
2. Shown as "Cabin" on Atlas map 73, near present Little Goose Dam. (back)
3. Deadman Creek ("Creek Small" on Atlas map 73), meeting the Snake at Central Ferry State Park, Garfield County, Washington. (back)
4. In the vicinity of present Riparia, Whitman County, below the mouth of Alkali Flat Creek (shown as "Brook" on Atlas map 73). (back)
5. They had entered the arid Great Columbian Plain, whose barren landscape offered a great contrast to the wooded mountains to the east. Allen (PG), 307–9; Meinig. (back)
6. The dark rugged stone is Miocene-age basalt of the Columbia River Basalt Group. These rocks occupy much of the Columbia Plateau and were formed by the cooling of sheets of molten lava that extended for hundreds of miles and were up to several hundred feet thick. (back)
7. Presumably the Indian of "another nation" mentioned by Gass the previous day. Clark does not note his presence with the party. (back)
8. Gass, Whitehouse, and the captains use the term "Flathead" in a very general way to refer to various peoples west of the Continental Divide. The people along the Snake River in this area were Nez Perces and Palouses. (back)