June 15, 1806
90.51% Complete
Aug 30, 1803 Sep 30, 1806

June 15, 1806


We had some little difficulty in collecting our horses this morning they had straggled off to a greater distance than usual.    it rained very hard in the morning and after collecting our horses we waited 〈an hour〉 for it to abait, but as it had every appearance of a settled rain we set out at 10 A. M.    we passed a little prarie at the distance of 8½ me. [1] to which we had previously sent R. Feilds and Willard.    we found two deer which they had killed and hung up.    at the distance of 2½ miles further we arrived at Collins's Creek where we found our hunters; they had killed another deer, and had seen two large bear together the one black and the other white. [2]    we halted at the creek, dined and graized our horses.    the rains have rendered the road very slippery insomuch that it is with much difficulty our horses can get on    several of them fell but sustained no injury.    after dinner we proceeded up the creek about ½ a mile, passing it three times, thence through a high broken country to an Easterly fork of the same creek about 10½ miles and incamped near a small prarie in the bottom land. [3]    the fallen timber in addition to the slippry roads made our march slow and extreemly laborious on our horses.    the country is exceedingly thickly timbered with long leafed pine, some pitch pine, larch, white pine, white cedar or arborvita of large size, [4] and a variety of firs.    the undergrowth principally reed root [5] from 6 to 10 feet high with all the other speceis enumerated the other day.    the soil is good; in some plaices it is of a red cast like our lands in Virginia about the S. W. mountains. [6] Saw the speckled woodpecker, [7] bee martin [8] and log cock or large woodpecker. [9]    found the nest of a humming bird, [10] it had just began to lay its eggs.— Came 22 Miles today.


Collected our horses early with the intention of makeing an early Start. Some hard showers of rain detained us untill [blank] A M at which time we took our final departure from the quawmach fields and proceeded with much dificuelty owing to the Situation of the road which was very Sliprey, and it was with great dificulty that the loaded horses Could assend the hills and Mountains    they frequently Sliped down both assending and decending those Steep hills.    at 9 miles we passed through a Small prarie in which was quawmash    in this Prarie Reubin Fields & Willard had killed and hung up two deer    at 2 miles further we arrived at the Camp of R. Fields & Willard on Collin's Creek, they arrived at this Creek last evening and had killed another Deer near the Creek.    here we let our horses graze in a Small glade and took dinner.    the rain Seased and Sun Shown out.    after 〈dinner〉 detaining about 2 hours we proceeded on passing the Creek three times and passing over Some ruged hills or Spurs of the rocky Mountain, passing the Creek on which I encamped on the 17th Septr. last [11] to a Small glade of about 10 acres thickly Covered with grass and quawmash, near a large Creek and encamped. we passed through bad fallen timber and a high Mountain this evening.    from the top of this Mountain I had an extensive view of the rocky Mountains to the South [12] and the Columbian plains for great extent [13]    also the S W. Mountains [14] and a range of high Mountains which divides the waters of Lewis's & Clarks rivers and seems to termonate nearly a West Cours. [15] Several high pts. to the N & N. E. Covered with Snow.    a remarkable high rugd mountain the forks of Lewis's river nearly South and covered with Snow. [16] The vally up the Chopunnish river [17] appears extensive tolerably leavel and Covered with timber. The S W. Mountains is very high in a S S W. derection.


Sunday 15th June 1806.    we arose at day light and went out in this flat for our horses. Soon Set in to raining hard.    we got up all our horses    took breakfast & packed up and Set out about 8 oClock and proceeded on.    found the road verry Slipperry & bad    took the mountains and the road So bad Several of our horses fell    about noon we had Thunder and hard Showers of rain.    we crossed Several runs on which is considerable of white ceedder timber balsom fer & diffrent kinds of pine.    we have now 66 good horses to take us and our baggage across the mountains.    came to the Small prarie where R. Fields and Willard had been hunting found 2 deer hanging up which they had killd.    we took the meat and proceed. on down the bad hill on Collinses Creek where we found R. Fields and Willard    they had killed another Deer and were Camped on the bank of the Creek where we dined and proceeded on.    found the road very bad falling timber &C.    at dark we Camped at a Small glade where was pleanty of feed for our horses


Sunday 15th.    This was a cloudy wet morning with some thunder. We left Com-mas flat to attempt to cross the mountains; and had sixty-six horses, all very good. We ascended a high mount with a good deal of difficulty, as the path was very slippery, but got over safe to a small prairie, where the two men [18] who had gone on ahead had killed two deer and hung them up. We took the meat, proceeded down the hill and found the hunters who had killed another deer. We halted at a creek and took dinner; then proceeded over a very difficult road on account of the fallen timber. We had rain at intervals during the forenoon, but the afternoon was clear. We encamped in a small glade, where there was plenty of grass for the horses.

1. Crane Meadows, north of Lolo Creek in Clearwater County, Idaho. Space, 30; Atlas map 71. (back)
2. The white bear is the grizzly bear, Ursus horribilis. (back)
3. They camped on Eldorado Creek, in Idaho County, Idaho, not named on Atlas maps 70 or 71, near the mouth of Lunch Creek. Space, 31. (back)
4. As the party ascends into the mountains, they leave dry forest types behind and enter a zone with higher precipitation and moist forests similar to those they saw on the Pacific Coast. Two characteristic species of the moist forest are noted here: western white pine, Pinus monticola Dougl., and western redcedar, Thuja plicata Donn. (white cedar or arborvitae refer to the similar eastern species T. occidentalis L.). Western redcedars reach sizes up to sixteen feet in diameter, much larger on average than white cedar. Little (CIH), 62-W, 90-W. (back)
5. Reed root is the redroot (redstem ceanothus) of June 10. (back)
6. The Columbia Basalt underlies this entire area. It contains abundant iron-bearing minerals such as augite and olivine. In dry climates the basalt weathers brown to dark brown, but in wet climates the basalt weathers more easily to a reddish-brown or brick-red hematite. The soil here contains hematite disseminated among several other soil-forming materials. (back)
7. Identified by Coues (HLC), 3:1044, as Cabanis's woodpeecker, Dryobates villosus hyloscopus. Burroughs, 240, says that Cabanis's woodpecker is not found north of California, and declares this to be the Rocky Mountain hairy woodpecker, Dendrocopos villosus monticola. Cutright (LCPN), 433, agrees with Coues. Both are now subsumed under the hairy woodpecker, Picoides villosus [AOU, 393]. See also Holmgren, 34. (back)
8. Western kingbird, Tyrannus verticalis [AOU, 447]; see June 10, 1805. Burroughs, 244. (back)
9. Pileated woodpecker, Dryocopus pileatus [AOU, 405]; see March 4, 1806. Holmgren, 32; Burroughs, 242. (back)
10. Identified by Coues (HLC), 3:1044 and n. 8, as the broad-tailed hummingbird, Selasphorus platycercus [AOU, 432], a new species. See also Cutright (LCPN), 301, 306, 437. Holmgren, 31, thinks it could be one of four species, including the broad-tailed. (back)
11. Cedar Creek, in Idaho County; the actual date was September 19, 1805. Space, 14; Peebles (RLC), 22; Atlas map 70. (back)
12. Perhaps the Clearwater Mountains in Idaho County. (back)
13. Nez Perce and Camas prairies, according to Peebles (RLC), 22. (back)
14. Perhaps the Wallowa Mountains in Wallowa County, Oregon. Ibid. (back)
15. Assuming Clark's River to be, as usual, the Bitterroot and Clark Fork rivers in Montana, and Lewis's River to be the Salmon and the Snake, the separating range would be the Bitterroot Mountains. From where Clark could see them, the mountains would appear to run northwesterly. (back)
16. Presumably the Seven Devils Mountains, in Idaho and Adams counties, Idaho, between the Snake and the Salmon. (back)