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Shores and alps of Alaska : with illustrations and two maps Seton-Karr, Heywood Walter, 1859- 1887

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Array     SHORES  AND  ALPS
OF
ALASKA. 
BALLANTYNE,   HANSON AND CO.
EDINBURGH  AND  LONDON   SHORES AND ALPS 
OF 
ALASKA 
BY 
H. W.  SETON   KARR,   F.R.G.S. 
ETC. 
With Illustrations and Two Maps 
LONDON: 
SAMPSON LOW, MARSTON, SEARLE, & RIVINGTON, 
CROWN BUILDINGS, 188 FLEET STREET, E.C. 
1887 
[ All rights reserved]  SHORES AND ALPS 
OF 
ALASKA 
BY 
H. W.  SETON   KARR,   F.R.G.S. 
ETC. 
With Illustrations and Two Maps 
LONDON: 
SAMPSON LOW, MARSTON, SEARLE, & RIVINGTON, 
CROWN BUILDINGS, 188 FLEET STREET, E.C. 
1887 
[ All rights reserved]  PREFACE.
-H-
The clearest and simplest manner of describing a
journey of exploration, of sport, or of adventure, is
often in the form of the original diary—penned in
situ from day to day in the tent, the forest, or the
canoe, on the shore, the glacier, or the mountain
-side. Such a book does this profess to be, having
the merits, if it has the defects, of an instantaneous
word-photograph, rather than of a carefully elaborated work of art.
When, as the New York Times Expedition to
Alaska, and as the first explorers who had ever
landed on that stern coast, we made our attempt
upon Mount St. Elias, our combined alpinism was
insignificant. Our experience had been gleaned
from divers places. Lieutenant Schwatka had travelled in the Arctic, Professor Libbey in Colorado,
and the writer had mountaineered in the Alps. An
expedition comprising Swiss guides, or consisting
of experienced climbers, would be more successful. '-
"VU
PREFACE.
The interior of the mysterious Kenai Peninsula.
and the regions between the Yukon River and
Cook's Inlet, are as yet unknown and unexplored,
with the exception of the Tannanah, which was.
descended by Lieutenant Allen.
As the first explorer in the footsteps of Cook to
make the circuit of the coast northwards from Cape
Spencer, or the canoe journey from Kaiak to Prince
William Sound, the writer has attempted to describe a country which will soon become better
known. 8SPL r I
CONTENTS.
-K-
INTRODUCTION.
FROM THE ATLANTIC TO THE PACIFIC BY THE NEW RAILWAY
ACROSS THE ROCKY MOUNTAINS.
Winnipeg—Medicine Hat—The Buffalo extinct—Calgary and
Fort Macleod—The Cattle-ranching Industry—An Excursion to the Canadian National Park—The Hot Springs-
Alone at Devil's Lake—The Peaks near the Kicking Horse
—Golden City—The Big Bend—Peaks of the Selkirks—
Rogers Pass—The Loops—Second Crossing of the Columbia
—Western Notices—Over the Eagle—We travel on a Hand-
car—Forest Fires—Shuswap Lake—The Farming Country—
Kamloops Lake—Ganons of the Thompson and the Eraser—
Off for Alaska—The New York Times Expedition—Game
and Aspects of Vancouver Island—The Early Navigators—
Nanaimo — Esquimault — The Indians —The Chinese —
Climate of Victoria—Elk, Blacktail, Salmon-trout, and
Mountain Goats      ..........
CHAPTER I.
Northwards from Victoria—The Great Sea-River, or the Inland
Passage—Nanaimo—Tongass—Metlakatla —The Skeena
River—Cape Fox—Loring—Wrangel—The Taku Inlet—
Juneau—Chilcat and Chilcoot—Glacier Bay—Muir's Glacier
—Sitka or New Archangel—A Fishing and Shooting Excursion—The Fourth of July at Sitka   .....
25
CHAPTER IL
From Sitka to the Alaskan Alps—The U.S.S. Pinta—Mount
Fairweather—Arrival at Yakatat—The Mount St. Elias
range—The Yakatat Indians—The Swedish Traders—
Indian Curiosities—The Man-o'-War at the Village—Interviews with the Chief	
45 CONTENTS.
CHAPTER III.
We leave Yakatat fijir Icy BaJ—Landing in the Surf—The Base
Camp—Strawberries and Bear-Trails—The Start for Mount
St. Elias—Fording a Glacial Torrent—A Mighty Stream—
The Quicksands—A Mountainous Moraine Overgrown with
Forest—An Ice-buried River ... ...     62
CHAPTER IV.
Waiting by the Ice—The Indians Return for more Provisions—
A vast Moraine overgrown wfth. Trees and Resting upon
Moving Ice—Parted from the Guides—Stopped by a Lake
of Bergs—We Separate to find a Way—A Dammed-up
Torretffc Breaks out afresh — Gradual Burial of a Forest
Island—Loss of the Professor—File, Ice, and Water—We
Start again—More Glacial Lakes and the Great Tyndall
Glacier—The Fifth Camp reached—Pigiparations for the
Final Ascent   ..........     83
CHAPTER V.
The Ascent of Mount St. Elias—Dangerous Crevasses—We are
Roped—The Ascent—I reach 6800 Feet over Snow-line—A
Bear close to Camp—A Description of the Mountain—The
Return to Icy Bay—Quicksands—Three Bears Killed—An
Attempt to Launch our Whaleboat ffirough the Surf—We
Swamp at Midnight    101
CHAPTER VI.
A Fresh Attempt to Pass the Suixlof Icy Bay—Abandonment
of our Possessions—Skirting the Shore—Crossing Yakatat
Bay—We camp by the Indian Village—Haggling with the
Natives, or " Ckip-music"—Our Life at Yakatat—An Attempt
to Recover the Abandoned Property—The Kaiak Traders
arrive in their Schooner—Poisoning of the Indians with
Arsenic—Murder of-George Holt—The Chief Medicine-
Man—I leave Yakatat—ThS New York Times Expedition
waits for the Man-o'-War—Becalmed—Shooting Seals—A
Sea-otter Hunt—Cape Yagtag—A Wild Stern Coast-line—
Another enormous Glacier—Life on the Schooner—Cape
Suckling—Cape Martin—Kaiak Island        .       ,      .      .119 CONTENTS.
XI
CHAPTER VII.
Arrival at Kaiak—I become a Naval Officer—Hauling in Dog-
Fish—The Hunter's Home and the Indian Village—The
Tame Bear—Two Norwegians on Cape Suckling—How the
Bear came for them—The Habits of the Sea-Otter—Visiting
the Indian Hovels—I become an Admiral, and the Chief is
presented to me—The Weather changes       ....
144
CHAPTER VIII.
We are forced to stop at Martin Point—Raw Salmons1 Noses—
A Bear shot—A Drunken Indian Village—Sliding over the
Mud of the Copper River Delta—The Squaw kills a Salmon
—Camp on an Island—Estuary of the Copper River—Camp
on Hawkins Islands—The Indians Washing—Caught in a
Gale—Salmon-fishing Extraordinary—Description of an
Alaskan Scene—Captain Cook in Prince William Sound—
We arrive at Nuchuk	
162
CHAPTER IX.
Our Life at Nuchuk—A Native Ball—The Natives start on a
Sea-Otter Hunt in Bidarkies—Description of a Bidarky—
Climbing after Grouse—Millions of Salmon—Spearing and
Hooking them—Salmon-Drying—Our Russian Bath—A
Description of Nuchuk and the Game and Food of Prince
William Sound—How the Natives Live, and how the Alaska
Commercial Company of San Francisco Trades with them—
The Natives as Captain Cook found them     ....
182
CHAPTER X.
Life with the Indians on the Copper River  .
200
CHAPTER XL
Waiting at Nuchuk in Prince William Sound—The Indians
refuse to move—We prepare to Winter there—The First
Snow—Sport at Nuchuk—The Ducks, Grouse, and Geese—
The Schooner arrives at last—Chenega and the Coast of the
Kenai Peninsula—A Gale—We reach Kodiak—Fearful
Murder at our Supper-table—A Terrible Passage to San
Francisco—Homewards again	
222 Xll
CONTENTS.
APPENDIX
The Fur Trade of Alaska—Fur-seals—Hair-seals—Sea-Lions—
Sea-otters—Prospects of the Fur Trade a Century, ago as
estimated by Cook—The Varieties of Foxes—Black and
Brown Bears—Their Pursuit—The Lynx, Polar Bear, Marten,
Cariboo, Moose, Sheep, and Goat—Prince William Sound
apd its Indians—A Description of Cook's Inlet and its
Shores—The Fur-trading Stores—The Volcanoes—Cape
Douglas — A Description of the Alaskan Pen insula, its
Settlements, Game, and Mountains—Unexplored Alaska—
Future Sporting Expeditions—A Chugamute Vocabulary   •
234 LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.
1 the
ge, on the
Mount St. Elias, nearly 20,000 feet in height; from Yakatat Bay,
distant over fifty miles {Frontispiece).
The Pass across the Rocky Mountains *.       *»
The Devil's Lake    .       .       .       i       .'       !       .*
Castle Mountain-and the Canadian National Park
The View from the Hot Springs    ....
Cathedral Mountain	
Crossing the Selkirks; the Source of the Uleciflewaet an
first Glacier near the summit of the Rogers Pass
Rooms to Let	
How we crossed the Eagle Pass over the Gold Ran
Canadian Pacific Railway, British Columbia
Yale, the Gateway to the Canons of the Fraser   .
Nanaimo	
Indian Tlinkit Carvings on the Pacific Coast
Stopping to Coal at Nanaimo, Vancouver's Island
An Indian Totem Pole at Fort Wrangel
At Howkan	
Taku Inlet	
The Gold Mine on Douglas Island
Chilcat     ......
Eagle Glacier	
Davidson Glacier    ....
Sitka and Mount Edgcumbe .
A Young Bear for Five Dollars
He " means business, though it is all for
Blacktail .       ....
The Final Heat
The Judge practises the Chinook Language
.Mount Fairweather, rising to 15,500 feet above the North P
Ocean at its base     .       .    ^p
Mount'Vancouver, 13,100 feet        ....
The Village of the Yakatat Indians
Spirit Masks from the Yakatat Indian Sorcerer's Grav
The Start for Mount St. Elias       ....
Mount Cook, 16,000 feet, from the Tyndall Glacier
Trying to ascend Mount St. Elias ....
The Professor •	
pleasure |
acific
PAGE
4
6
8
8
10
J3
15
16
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20
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26
27
3i
33
34
35
36
37
39
40
41
42
43
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53
57
73
99
102
126 XIV
LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.
A Yakatat Medicine Man
The St Elias Alps, the third highest range in the world, viewed
from the westward  ....
Cape St. Elias	
The schooner Three Brothers .
ivaiaJs      ......       .
Indian Hovels at Kaiak ....
Klok-Shegees in his "Store" Clothing .
At Martin Point     .....
August 22d, 5 A.M., looking north-west
A Man of Oodiak   .....
August 22d, i p.m. .
How the Trees grow in Alaska
Nuchuk—The Baidars or Baiderars of the Copper
Nuchuk—The Russian Church
Bidarkies	
A Dog-Salmon	
Jawbone of a Dog-Salmon
Nuchuk—Our Home for Two Months  .
Prince William Sound, Alaska, with Nuchuk Harbour
A Man of Oodiak	
An Alaskan Indian Halibut Hook
At Nuchuk—Gustia, once a Slave-Boy .
Sett-Shoo, a Boy of Oodiak   .
Knight's Island, from five miles north of Chenega
Part of the Kenai Peninsula, from Chenega .
Riv
er In
dians
looking east
APS  AND  PLANS
General Map of Alaska and British Columbia, showing the
Author's Route.
Plan of the Route taken by the New York Times Expedition
from Icy Bay to Mount St. Elias and back   ....
Jjjap of Alas^c, from Unpunished Sources, showing Volcanoes,
Fur-trading Stations, Indian Villages, and Game Districts .
PAGE
129
141
142
145
147
157
159
I63
l69
170
171
173
183
I84
I85
191
192
193
194
195
I96
223
225
227
228
87
237 From the land of the aurora,
Land untrodden by explorer,
Land of mystery and terror,
Peaks unsealed and seas unfathomed ;
From the land of seal and otter,
Land of ptarmigan and penguin,
Land of white wolf and of walrus,
Land of silver fox and ermine,
Land of Yukon, land of Thlinkit,
Land of avalanche and glacier,
Land of midnight sun and silence,
Came a strange and thrilling story ;
Came a story of the battle
With the iceberg and the tempest,
With the torrent and the breaker,
With the storm cloud and the north wind
Howling wolf-life through the gorges ;
Came the story of the secrets
Wrested from the sullen river,
Wrested from the gloomy mountain,
From the forest and the chasms,
Secrets locked away for ages ;
Came this legend, strange and simple,
Full of promise, full of treasure
For the unborn generation ;
Came this legend of achievement
In the mighty land—Alaska.
New York Times. ■ ■■      I — .— -  LONDON: SAMPSON 10W, MARSTON & 00. SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
g|::l   INTKODUCTION.   fl|Rp||! \
FROM  THE  ATLANTIC  TO  THE  PACIFIC  BY  THE  NEW
RAILWAY  ACROSS  THE  ROCKY  MOUNTAINS.
Winnipeg—Medicine Hat—The Buffalo extinct—Calgary and Fort
Macleod—The Cattle-ranching Industry—An Excursion to the
Canadian National Park—The Hot Springs—Alone at Devil's
Lake—The Peaks near the Kicking Horse—Golden City—The
Big Bend—Peaks of the Selkirks—Rogers Pass—The Loops—
Second Crossing of the Columbia—Western Notices—Over the
Eagle — We travel on a Hand-car—Forest Fires—Shuswap
Lake—The Farming Country—Kamloops Lake—Canons of the
Thompson and the Fraser — Off for Alaska—The New York
Times Expedition—Game and Aspects of Vancouver Island—
The Early Navigators—Nanaimo—Esquimault—The Indians—
The Chinese—Climate of Victoria—Elk, Blacktail, Salmon-
trout, and Mountain Goats.
Aboard The Anton (bound for Sitka,
Alaska), June ijth, 1886.
We have just completed our journey from the
Atlantic to the Pacific Ocean, as some of the very-
first through passengers by the new Canadian
Pacific Eailway. It has occupied nearly one
month, partly because the line  is not yet com-
A
1 2 SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
pletely 1 opened up' for traffic across the mountains ; there is still a gap of some miles near the
summit of the Eagle Pass (over the Gold or Coast
range), which we traversed ona" hand-car." Four
thousand men are still working upon the Rogers
Pass (over the Selkirk range), and the portion of
the line from Kamloops westward to the sea has
not yet been |given over' by the contractor, who
is, however, running passenger trains over it. But
in a few weeks the continent can be crossed from
Montreal to Vancouver in five days and fourteen
hours, and this will be further reduced to a five
days' transit. It will be the longest journey
known on any railway in the world (2900 miles).
After leaving Montreal the line passes through
a wooded country by Lake Nipissing and the northern rocky shores of Lakes Huron and Superior
to Winnipeg. The latter lies at the edge of the
more thickly timbered country. From this point,
the broad and almost level and treeless prairie
stretches westward to the base of the Eocky
Mountains. This great mountain-range approaches
nearer the Pacific coast in British Columbia than
is the case in the States; nor are there in the
former such extensive foothills on its eastern slopes.
Hence, as we approached Calgary and left the level THE CANADIAN CATTLE COUNTRY.       3
plains for the most part behind us, the Eockies
rose suddenly and more markedly from the tablelands, which are 1300 miles in breadth.
Westward from Eegina little of interest is passed,
the most important places being Moose-jaw (the
abbreviation of a long Indian name), and Medicine
Hat (after an Indian conjuror), generally called
I The Hat.'' The country gradually changes from a
desolate region of poor lands to a good ranching
and cattle-breeding prairie reaching to the very
foot of the Eockies. The surface is still covered
with trails and the whitening bones of buffaloes.
The collection of the latter forms quite an industry.
It is but a few years since this region was alive
with the buffalo in the herds of thousands j the
price offered for their hides has been the cause of
their extermination by Indian and white hunters.
I stayed some days at Calgary, the chief town
of Alberta, while L. and F. drove south to Fort
Macleod. Calgary and Fort Macleod are the head-
centres of the great cattle ranches and stock-raising
industry of Canada. The extensive Indian reserves
which the Government has to supply with beef (in
place of the buffalo, now no more in existence),
form a good local market.
The public lands are leased as cattle ranches on 4 •   SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
liberal terms. One hundred thousand acres can
be included in a single lease at two cents an acre
for twenty-one years! The best grass is found
here and the purest water of any of the cattle-
raising districts of the west.
Though only two years old, Calgary boasts two
mayors and two rival town councils. We had
expected  to find some j trout-fishing in the Bow
The Pass across the Rocky Mountains.
river, but the water is discoloured and thick from
Jane till September from the melting snows.
A couple of days after arriving, I had the opportunity of joining the I first excursion ever offered
to the people of. AlbertaI to the proposed i{ Canadian National Park' in the heart of the Eocky
Mountains.
From Calgary the line follows the course of the FROM CALGARY TO THE NATIONAL PARK.
Bow river as it issues from the portals of the
range, to its source near the summit of the Kicking
Horse Pass. Jagged and scarred as are the high
mountains on either side of the valley of the Bow,
yet they give the impression of having been turned
out of Dame Nature's workshop only just long
enough to allow the pines to grow upon their steep
slopes. Never were strata left contorted with such
regular irregularity, or mountains formed which
gave evidence of such terrifying convulsions, for
they stand in regular rows of cliffs and pinnacles.
It was the Queen's birthday. We swept along
at a rate of thirty miles an hour through wild
rocky scenery, stationed upon a kind of open
" Observation car," together with the brass band,
which played selections as we proceeded.
As seen from Calgary the range seems broken
into the most fantastic shapes, from The Devil's
Head in the north (which resembles the Matter-
horn with the top broken off) to Mount Head in
the south.
It was said that when the summit of The Devil's
Head should fall (which has occurred), the country
would pass from the possession of the Stony
Indians into that of the white man.
The people of this tribe are described as reliable 6        SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
and honest; they have their villages at Morley,
and are expert as hunters and mountaineers. They
had just departed for their summer's hunting
trip, or we should have taken a couple of them
with us.
Almost within sight of Calgary lies the Gap, as
the gateway into the mountain valley of the Bow
is named.    The bold and eccentric contours of the
The Devil's Lake.
mountain walls on either hand increase as one
advances nearer to the summit of the Pass.
At Banff I remained till joined by L. and F.,
camping some miles off at The Devil's Lake for
four days entirely alone.
The Eocky Mountains do not on the whole offer
good trout-fishing. The Bow river from June till
August is charged with muddy snow-water.   How- THE DEVIL'S LAKE. 7
ever, as every one agreed that at The Devil's Lake
the water would be clear, and that it was surrounded by high mountains rarely visited and
never ascended, I decided to visit it, and got a
man and a pack-horse to deposit me there after a
dangerous crossing of the swollen Devil's Creek.
No ripple either of breeze or moving fin # broke
the glassy surface of The Devil's Lake, which
reflected the mountains round in water of such a
deep azure blue, as to be almost sufficiently uncanny to account for its name, without taking into
consideration the gloomy precipices which overhang its sides.
In front of my tent by the edge of the lake stood,
or rather tottered, a withered tree which might have
been the veritable Upas Tree, for not a living thing
was discernible around.
Only the curious cries of a few wild-fowl broke
the silence of the nights, sounding almost human,
like preconcerted signals of Indians to attack the
camp of the solitary white man. Once or twice a
humming-bird hovered and poised itself overhead,
and then darted away, startling me with the sudden
noise of its wings.
From a summit five thousand feet above the lake
* Later in the season a 27 lb. trout was caught. 8
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
an extensive panorama was visible of the Eocky
Mountains, two of the peaks being counterparts
of the Schreckhorn and Finsteraarhorn.
Castle Mountain and'ffihe Canadian National Park.
Bears are unusually numerous this season, and
have been seen lately near both of the hot springs
in the Park; and on one occasion by some ladies
5^^
90 ' '       ^r.,
N
M
The View from the Hot Springs.
who are camping near the upper springs, and who
informed me that they were much terrified, and
had discontinued their walks in the neighbourhood.
o CAVERN OF THE HOT SPRINGS.
The attractions of the district, without in any
way rivalling the American Yellowstone National
Park, consist, in addition to the mountain scenery,
which is remarkable, of two sets of warm springs
and of some falls or rapids of the Bow river. The
more elevated" of the springs command a wide
view, while the lower ones are more curious in
character. The largest is entirely subterranean, in
a dome-shaped cavern which one enters by means
of a ladder from the summit. On the floor is a
pool with a sandy bottom through which the warm
waters bubble up. When one's eyes get accustomed
to the gloom it can be seen that the water makes
its exit as mysteriously as it entered.
At first I was alone; but afterwards a rough-
looking man made hig appearance, and offered to
take charge of my rifle while I descended. It was
thought wTell to decline.
In full view from Banff on the south side lies
Castle Mountain, or Cascade Peak; castellated
terraces of rock encircle its summit like impassable
walls.
Higher yet lie Mounts Lefroy, Stephen and
Hector, and Goat Peak ; and on the north a curious
rocky fortress guards the summit of the Pass—
Cathedral Mountain. 10
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
After The Devil's Lake our next camping-place
was to be Golden City, where we were to find
the small steamer which has been started on the
Columbia by an enterprising ex-naval officer.
At the top of the Pass the scenery is of the most
m
Cathedral Mountain.
rugged description, and the sensational character
of the engineering increases as one commences the
rapid descent towards the Columbia Eiver.
Grand pines and thick undergrowth, rushing
mountain torrents, and extensive vistas of peak and
valley form an ever-varying and wild landscape. TO GOLDEN CITY.
ii
The view of bleak and jagged crests overhead
against the sky, and of steep pine-covered mountain slopes stretching out below, rocky and
avalanche-swept, contrast with the bare expanses
of river-channels on the broad valley-bottoms at
their foot.
Grand, yet peaceful compared with the wild
scenery of The Devil's Lake, is the view of the wide
' wooded valley of the great Columbia Eiver as it
bursts suddenly into view at Golden City, bounded
on the west side by the snowy Selkirks, and on
the east by the main range of the Eockies which
J o
we had just crossed.
The twin sources of the Columbia, are fed by the
snows of the Western slopes of the Eocky Mountains. The main river flows northward for nearly
two hundred miles, makes a loop, known as the
Big Bend, round the Selkirk range, and retraces
its course southwards, flowing through Oregon to
the Pacific.
Through its loop the Columbia drains both sides
of the Selkirks, the two portions of the river being
barely fifty miles apart. But only within the last
three years was an accessible pass discovered over
the range, and called the Eogers Pass after the
explorer. 12
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
It is a region rich in minerals, timber, and game.
Ten millions sterling worth of gold alone has been
o o
obtained by placer-mining from the beds of the
rivers. The timber has been lavishly used in the
construction of the railway. Mountain Creek, for
example, is crossed by a trestle bridge 176 feet
high and 600 feet long, while the bridge at Stoney
Creek is believed to be the highest timber railway,
bridge in the world, being 296 feet in height and
450 feet in length.
The game is very shy, being much hunted by
the Indians.
Leaving Golden City, where we camped for
four days, the line passes Donald and follows
alongside the river, whose curves form grand
amphitheatres of rock rising thousands of feet
overhead. The line soon enters Beaver Canon,
which it follows almost to the summit of the pass.
Avalanches are numerous in winter, and to guard
against them many miles of snow-sheds are being
builft! On both sides of the summit rise Mount
Carrol (9560 feet) and Mount Hermit (8990),
named from a rock near the latter which appears
like a monk. The Selkirks as well as the Eockies
proper are remarkable for the fantastic shapes of
their Spimmits.     One  forms  a  perfect   pyramid, THE SELKIRK RANGE.
13
another resembles an old woman wearing a nightcap.
The highest mountain of the Selkirk range is 11,000
feet, and lies south of the pass.    It was named Syn-
«?
Crossing the Selkirks ; the Source of the Illecillewaet and the first
Glacier near the summit of the Rogers Pass.
dicate Peak, but the Canadian Pacific Eailway Company have named it Mount Sir Donald, The Illecillewaet Eiver rises in a glacier near it, and flows w
14
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
westward from the summit of the pass into the
Columbia. The railway as it descends follows
along its banks. Close by at the mouth of the
gorge from which it issues are the " loops' of
the Canadian Pacific Eailway, like the circular
tunnels of the St. Gothard. Supported by large
timber trestles, the line makes six loops and
several curves one below the other, all in full
view, and running for six miles, descends 600 feet,
but advances meantime only two miles. Ille-
cillewaet is an Indian word meaning " roaring
torrent," and the stream is everywhere of that
character, and flows in a deep and tortuous ravine.
Douglas pines are now seen for the first time.
Twenty miles from the Columbia lies the Albert
Canon, with a fall of 2co feet. As we approach
the Columbia, Mount Begbie is seen towering over
the river opposite to the settlement of Farwell,
the name of which has lately been changed to
Eevelstoke. The Gold Eange is the next to be
passed.
Where can one see more original inscriptions
than in a western town ? " Cleanliness is next
to godliness, therefore go and wash at Johnson!s
bath-house on the river;" or " Nip and tuck shop;"
or "Rooms to let," painted on a small battered THE GOLD RANGE. 15
tent; or a car with this notice—" / am full of
James1 machines, hurry me along, farmers are
'waiting all along the line."
The line crosses the Columbia once more for the
last time, and enters the Eagle Pass, 1996 feet
above the Pacific. We had to pass the night
at Farwell, and found our large amount of impedimenta a nuisance.    Owing to the number of bad
r
— M   l
\N    M-fcli
ft-    U\   \  ^.v
fr      if I'll
# 1 r1
II Him
!
VAk /
fjn'.!-^ m
mcWfJi
characters prowling about during the construction
of the line (many persons have lately been 1 held
up " by them), wTe thought it right to sleep in the
waggon with our baggage, and went on next day
in a construction train filled with workmen to the
top of the pass. Here we were transferred on to
a "trolly," and then on to a I hand-car," which had
to be built out with planks to give us standing I'f
16
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
room. The propelling gear was worked by Ghina-
men, numbers of whom are employed on the line,
who seemed to find it hard work I pumping'   us
along.
o
mtfmA
as
v.
w>
How we crossed the Eagle Pass over the Gold Range on the
Canadian Pacific Railway, British Columbia.
There are a few snow-capped peaks in the Gold
Eange, but they are lower than the Eockies and
Selkirks, which seem as though just turned out
from Vulcan's laboratory. The summits of the
former appear to be more worn and rounded. In
many places the forest fires have caused great
devastation. Here and there notices are posted
relative to the penalties incurred by those who
are guilty of setting the wood on fire, but the
origin of these fires is often most mysterious. The
damper climate of the Pacific slopes will prevent *■«■
FARMING LANDS OF BRITISH COLUMBIA.
17
the enormous damage which has occurred in many
parts of the States.
At Griffin Lake there is fair trout-fishing. The
settlers informed us that there are three kinds of
fish. Eeindeer were shot last winter on open park
lands above, which are unseen as one passes through
the valley below.
Crossing the Shuswap Lakes at Sikamous Narrows, we passed the night at the small hotel, the
proprietor of which said he had campaigned with
General Gordon in China. We had now reached
a fine farming and ranching region comparatively
well settled and populated, besides being a good
hunting country, dry, hilly, and open.
It is as though a corner of the so-called great
American Desert had been thrust into the south
end of British Columbia, having its apex near
Cariboo (the mail from which place has lately been
I held up I and robbed).
This part is dotted with yellow pine; it can be
traversed without trails, and forms the grazing
ground of British Columbia.
The hired " cow-boys " on the ranches are mostly
Shuswap Indians or Siwashes.
We took the steamboat, first up the Spellu-
macheen   Eiver,  where   we   had   a   curious   old
B
\» i8
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
" coloured person " with large spectacles as steward.
His eyes, he said, " were tired of the world, and
didn't want to see no more of it." Passing through
peaceful agricultural scenery, we crossed the lakes
to Kamloops at the junction of the North and
South Thompson Eivers.
Yale—The Gateway to the Canons of the Fraser,
Kamloops Lake is twenty miles in length.
It is here that the scenery of the Thompson
Eiver Canon commences. Good trout-fishing can
be had where the river leaves the lake. The
Fraser and the Thompson Eiver—the chief watercourses of British Columbia—meet at Lytton, and
the  stream  now takes the name of the former. THE- START FOR ALASKA.
19
Startling as was the ride through the Canons of
the Thompson, high above the wild torrent, across
fissures and through cliffs, that through the Canons
of the Fraser Eiver was still more striking. The
rocky sides rise for thousands of feet like solid
walls. The river runs at racehorse speed, while
the railway is a succession of trestle bridges and
tunnels, very costly to construct. The gorge ends
at the small town of Yale.
The valley now widens out into flat forest and
pasture land, with distant views of the coast ranges.
We found the steamer at Port Hammond—a few
hours from Victoria.
Vancouver is to be the terminus, 2900 miles
west of Montreal, but it was burnt to the ground
a couple of days ago, and will have to* be rebuilt.
As the Ancon had just arrived from Portland,
Oregon, there was no time for delay at Victoria, and
I embarked alone the next day for Sitka, Alaska,
en route for the Alpine regions lying south-east of
Prince William Sound, and with the intention of
at least seeing, if not of endeavouring to make
the ascent of some of the Alps in the unexplored
and unknown country of Mount St. Elias (20,000
feet), hitherto considered the highest mountain in
North America.    I found on board a party of two f¥h>>
20
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
bound for the same spot, sent out by the New
York Times, composed of Lieutenant F. Schwatka,
late 9th U.S. Cavalry, and leader of the American
Expedition to King William Land, and Professor
W. Libbey of Princeton College. The island of
Vancouver, named after George Vancouver, once a
midshipman under Captain Cook, and afterwards
the earliest explorer and surveyor of the coasts
iptii
Nanaimo.
of British Columbia from 30° N. latitude up to
Eussian territory, is 275 miles long and 85 miles
broad, with mountains rising to 6000 feet. The
settled portions and those fit for agriculture lie
round Victoria and round Nanaimo Mines, the
great coaling place.
Victoria was once, over thirty years ago, a post
of the Hudson Bay Company, and grew into a
settlement during the Fraser Eiver gold " boom.
>j •mm
*>*«HBKmP.
W*
Ill
Indian Tlinkit Carvings on the Pacific Coast.  ^hswh-s
"■» "—'■
•WW
VICTORIA, THE ISLANDS AND THE INDIANS.
23
The railway from Victoria to Nanaimo will very
soon be completed. Westward of Victoria lies the
splendid harbour of Esquimault, used as a naval
station by Her Majesty's ships. Victoria Harbour
itself is small but excellent.
The seaward shores of Vancouver Island are
very rocky and indented, and inhabited by a dissolute race of Indians. The Hydahs and the Timp-
seans were once great warriors, and use 80-foot
canoes, carved out of a single Douglas fir-tree.
Wild as the Vancouver Indians are, they are not
by any means so depraved as are the uncivilised
Queen Charlotte Islanders further north, living in
islands almost entirely unexplored and unvisited.
Many of the Vancouver Indians are employed in
the Fraser Eiver salmon-canneries, and are respectable sons of the Church.
The Chinese have invaded British Columbia
wTith the same determination with which they have
settled in California. Most of the domestic servants in Victoria are Chinamen.
As the last view one will have for a long time
of the luxuries and ultra-comforts of civilisation,
one gazes regretfully at the pretty villas with
verandahs overgrown by creepers, and surrounded
by gardens with luxuriant fruit and vegetables, in 24
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
this semi-tropical climate. From March to November is a perpetual spring, while in winter the
thermometer rarely falls below 400.
Fair sport can be had on the northern and
central parts of Vancouver Island in September
and October with the wapiti, or American elk,
and at any time during the season with the black-
tail, or Virginian deer (Cervus Columbianus), which
is found on all the islands northwards. In July
and August the salmon will take a bait such as
spoon-bait, notwithstanding all that has been said
to the contrary, although they do not care for a
fly. Trout can of course be caught with fly. On
the mainland white mountain-goats can be found,
and sometimes a few bears. (     25     )
-r   .;;■:;   I CHAPTEE  I.    MH|§j^^li
N ortlrwards from yictoria—-The Great Sea-River, or the Inland
Passage—Nanaimo—Tongass—Metlakatla—The Skeena River
—Cape Fox—Loring—Wrangel—The Taku Inlet—Juneau—
Chilcat and Chilcoot—Glacier Bay—Muir's Glacier—Sitka or
New Archangel—A Fishing  and   Shooting Excursion—The
o o o
Fourth of Julv at Sitka.
Sitka, Alaska, July 8th, 1886.
The province of British Columbia is no longer an
unknown or uncared-for part of the British Empire.
A new pathway, by the completion of the Canadian
Eailway, has brought her within a fortnight's journey of the mother country. Her gold and silver,
her cattle and timber, fisheries and agriculture,
and treasures of undeveloped wealth are teaching
the nation that she is a land of giant future possibilities.
America's recent purchase, Alaska, will perhaps
feel the benefit and will become a possession of
increasing value.
The Pacific Coast Company's steamers make
fortnightly trips during the summer up to Sitka
i 26
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
by the inland passage. The least remarkable
portions of the journey northwards are during the
first five days. One is reminded of the tour usually made along
the coasts of Nor-
way. But the
channels and armlets of British Columbia   are    nar-
rower, more protected, dark, and
intricate. The
forests are quite
unbroken, and the
mountains higher
and more continuous. Queen Charlotte I Sound and
part of Dixon
Entrance are the
only portions of
the passage northwards not entirely
protected from the heaviest swell from the Pacific
Ocean or the strongest gales of wind. A more
hilly, and at the same time a more densely wooded,
'/&>/&&?*•/
Stopping to Coal at Nanaimo,
Vancouver's Island. Ifcl    .!_
*m
An Indian Totem Pole at Fort Wrangel.  NORTHWARDS.
29
-country it would be hard to imagine, containing
hardly one bare piece of flat ground, or ground of
any kind not covered by spruce or cedar.
AStei leaving Victoria we stayed to coal at
Nanaimo, having time to visit the mines by rail,
and then steamed direct for Fort Tongass on
American soil, just over the boundary line of
Alaska, leaving all British posts, forts, mines, and
fisheries for British vessels.
Opposite to Fort Tongass on the British side
lies Fort Simpson, and near it Mr. Duncan's
Indian Mission of Metlakatla, which boasts the
organisation almost of a city, with Indian policemen and even a brass band.
Good wild mountain-goat hunting can be got
from here by ascending the Skeena Eiver, whither
some English sportsmen have lately gone, returning in three weeks with eleven. Indeed
the neighbourhood of Cape Fox is a great game
country, principally for bears and goats. We
next steamed across Dixon Entrance, where we
had expected to feel the ocean swell, but were
agreeably disappointed. So light are the summer
nights in these high latitudes, that there is no
stopping on the part of the steamer notwithstanding that there are no lighthouses, and that the SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
channels are marvellously, involved and intricate.
To see what Nature can do in this respect one
should glance on the chart at Kou Island, lying
west of Fort Wrangel, to the shape of which the
Coast Survey Commission could find no more
appropriate resemblance than a mass of entrails
thrown upon the ground. And it is an apt
comparison.
After stopping for an hour at Loring, on the
island of Eevilla Gigedo, separated from the mainland by the narrow long channel called Behms
Canal, we passed up the Duke of Clarence Straits
in cloudy weather.
Fort Wr*angel was our next point of call near the
estuary of the Stikeen Eiver, which was discolouring
the sea for miles with muddy snow-water of a low
temperature, the line of junction between the blue
and the browm being very marked. A mail is
carried from Fort Wrangel by canoe to the Mission
on Prince of Wales Island at Howkan.
Fort Wrangel appears, in this wild wide land, as
a comparatively large village. Indian carved Totem
armorial poles can be seen and Indian curiosities
and wares bought.
After quitting this settlement the narrow Wrangel
Straits were passed by night and another cloudy At Howkan.  THE FIRST GLACIERS.
morning which followed prevented our seeing some
glaciers, the first which lie close to the route. But
in the afternoon the mountains cleared as wxe
steamed up Stephens Passage between Admiralty
Island  and the mainland.     Some  of the  larger
Taku Inlet.
Southern Alaskan snow-fields and glaciers came into
view for the first time as we passed the Taku Inlet
with bold rocky aiguilles prominent at its head.
White   mountain-goats  can   be found  on  the
summits near here, but they are much hunted by
the Indians.
c 34
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
The two young Frenchmen alluded to later on—
Visconte de la E. and M. de la S.—afterwards went
bear-hunting here. One writes to me as follows :—
■ Nous avons fait a Taku Inlet un sejour tres
amusant et, malgre les conseils de B. et de tous
les naturels du pays, j'ai chasse l'ours avec mon
petit Winchester, ce qui ne m'a pas mal reussi,
puisque j en ai tue deux, dont un pesait 600 livres;
The Gold Mine on Douglas Island.
je crois qu'on nous a trouvds un peu fous dans le
pays."
Close ahead we arrive at Harrisburg, alias
Juneau City, a large mining settlement. On
Douglas Island, immediately opposite, and facing
the town, lies the largest mine in Alaska, the Paris
or Treadwell quartz-mills, where gold literally
flows like water. The gold-bearing ledge is like
a quarry 500 feet in width.    The ore is not rich,. THE GOLD MINE.
35
averaging from 9 to 50 dollars per ton; but the
decomposed quartz is easily pulverised, and the
supply inexhaustible. The amount of profit from
the working of it is kept I dark," and is unknown ;
but it depends largely upon the employment of
Chilcat Indians as labourers, who cost less than
white men.
Three small creeks opposite lead to basins be-
Chilcat.
hind the mountains, where rich placer-mines have
been worked for four seasons. The situation of
Juneau is beautiful, but the mining population,
together with the Indians camped there, form
a rough " hard crowd" of both sexes—
I Every prospect pleases,
And man alone is vile."
Commercially' the most valuable timber found
in the neighbourhood is the red and yellow cedar,
'
1 if SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
the latter said to be impervious to the teredo or
boring worm; the white spruce is the common
tree, growing to 175 feet in height and 6 feet in
diameter.
Lynn's Canal is the long narrow -arm that leads
J o
northwards till it divides at the head into the two
Eaglfg Glacier.
branch inlets of Chilcat (the pass over the mountains leading to the Yukon Eiver), and Chilcoot.
The Eagle Glacier is passed on the right, and
Davidson's Glacier on the left, besides many others
of smaller size.
As we rounded the curve of the inlet, the United
States man-o'-war Pinta was seen lying at anchor. THE U.S. MAN-O'-WAR.
37
It was half settled that, instead of hiring a schooner,
as had been intended, I should join the New York
Times Alaskan Expedition, which was the bearer
of a recommendation from Secretary Whitney to
the captain of the U.S.S. Pinta, to take the expedition two hundred miles north-west from Cape
-Spencer along the unprotected portion of coast as
far as Yakatat Bay, at the foot of the St. Elias Alps.
Davidson. Glacier.
Glacier Bay—so called from the number of
glaciers which touch the sea, whither they descend
from the southern verge of the frozen regions—is
generally the next point of call. It is the best
opportunity afforded for conveniently inspecting
an Alaskan glacier.
In front of Muir's Glacier, on the eastern shores,
the water is deep up to the very edge of the ice,
which rises like a broken wall, and from which a
' 38
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
shower of icebergs of varied size is constantly
falling into the ocean which laves its foot and
undermines its green and glassy fissures.
This glacier has recently been investigated by
an American scientist. Glacier Bay is thirty miles
long and eight to twelve miles wide. At the mouth
is a cluster of thirty islands named Beardslee, composed of glacial dtibris. The width of the ice
where the glacier breaks through the mountains is
o o
t 0,664 feet, and of the water-front one mile, being
as much as 400 feet high in places. Nine large
and seventeen smaller branches unite to form the
main ice-stream. From measurements and observations, it appears that a stream of solid ice 5000
feet wide, and 700 feet deep, is entering the sea
at a rate of forty feet per day, in the month of
August.
Not a tree can be seen (and it is almost a relief
after the endless forests of the archipelago) upon
the steep, ice-worn, smooth rocky hills of Glacier
Bay. I
In a westerly direction across the inlet, under the
red rays of the setting sun, Mounts Crillon (15,900
feet), Fairweather (15,500 feet), and La Pe'rouse
appear in dim outline as the mighty vedettes of that
vast icy Switzerland beyond and partly bordering GLACIER BAY.
39
the sea, of the presence of which we are aware,
although most of its characteristics are unknown.
When we woke next morning we were passing
through Peril Straits where the Eureka foundered
in the " tide rip' in the narrowest part upon a
rock.
Sitka is prettily situated in a sound about thirty
miles across, and bordered with mountains  from
Sitka and Mount Edgcumbe.
four to six thousand feet high, covered most of the
year with snow. Years since, it was the headquarters of the Eussian Trading Company, whose
ponderous wood buildings are still the largest in
the settlement.
The extinct volcano of Mount Edgcumbe lies
across the bay, with vertical stripes of snow on its
sides. Our party made it 1022 metres in height.
At the arrival of eaoh steamer the inhabitants of 4Q
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
Sitka agree to go mad. Indian maidens dance
with miners, and night, never very dark, is turned
into day.    Meanwhile the squaws drive  a  good
trade in articles of native
manufacture and even in
such things as young bear
and blacktail deer.
The Pinta had to wait
a fortnight before she could
Ijake us north, for coals and
for the mails. It was therefore decided that we should
make a fishing and hunting
o o
excursion, which the Sitka
paper (for a weekly journal
is published) described as
"a party of young gentlemen in search of the picturesque in Nature and the
exciting in adventure. They
are procuring Indian guides
and evidently mean business,
though it is all for pleasure."
We hired three Indians and a large war-canoe,
with a smaller one for fishing.
A full-sized hydah or war-canoe measures some
7?.
f :'
i A SITKA SALMON FISHERY.
4i
1
thirty feet in length, and can sail ten knots with
a good breeze. We first camped some miles away
from Sitka by some old Eussian weirs, where
every moment a salmon or a salmon trout might be
seen darting, as one gazed, out of the briny foam
into the fresh water of the
lake hard by, from which
it is divided by some rocky
channels only a few yards
in length, some of which are
natural and others artificial,
these latter dating from the
Eussian occupation.
A solitary white man in
charge directs the operations
of salting the salmon-bellies ;
while each morning the hired
Indians arrived from some
spot in the bay known only
to themselves with a large
canoe-load of I silver " salmon.
Large quantities of salmon refuse are thrown into
the sea, where numbers of enormous cat-fish and dogfish can be seen struggling for the morsels, giving
us good sport with a salmon rod and line baited
with a lump of fish, fighting as they did when once
He " means business, though
it is all for pleasure." 42
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
hooked madly for their liberty. Some salmon were
caught with a spoon-bait before leaving for Mount
Edgcumbe, where plenty of deer are to be found.
During the next few days it rained and blew, but
when camp is pitched by the shore just within the
forest the enormous firs give excellent protection;
the only discomfort exists in the richness of the
verdant undergrowth, the normal and constant condition of which is one of dampness. Forest fires are unknown
on these islands. This dampness
covers the fallen trees and the
whole surface of the ground with
a deep soft moss, and renders the
forest scene one of tropical beauty
and luxuriance. The only successful method of shooting the
deer on the islands is the one we
employed during the short time we remained on
Kruzoff Island, on which the. above volcano is
situated.
After a ten mile tramp of the most fatiguing
kind we reached, the slopes of Edgcumbe, and
ascended to the higher ground where they feed.
Every one being carefully hidden, the Indians
brought the deer within range by imitating  the
/ <mm
HUNTING BLACKTAIL.
43
cry of the fawns by blowing on a blade of grass.
Each of us killed one within an hour, but it is an
unsatisfactory sort of sport from its very certainty
of success.
We found ourselves back at Sitka once more, in
The Final Heat.
time for the 4th of July celebrations, including an
" oration' by the judge, a baseball match, Indian
canoe races, and one of the I balls 1 for which that 44
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
hospitable place is famous. And while our rooms
are in Governor Swinefbrd's house, Ah Sow's small
restaurant furnishes us with meals. Eventually
the Idaho has arrived with coal, passengers, and
mails.    The  two bright boys from Chicago have
The Judge practises the Chinook Language—"Siwash sik turn-tun
o-cook kum tux."
shipped their Indians and war-canoe for Glacier
Bay after bears; while my French friends M.
de la S. and Ifisconte de la R. have embarked for
the Taku Inlet.    Our time at Sitka is drawing to
a c
lose. Jkk
-x.1—m
(   45    )
CHAPTEK  II.
From Sitka to the Alaskan Alps—The U.S.S. Pinta—Mount Fair-
weather—Arrival at Yakatat—The Mount St. Elias range—
The Yakatat Indians—The Swedish Traders—Indian Curiosities
—The Man-o'-War at the Village—Interviews with the Chief.
Aboard the U.S. Man-o'-War Pinta,
Yakatat Bay, Alaska, July 14th, 1886.
On the morning of July joth, the New York
Times Expedition to Mount St. Elias and Icy
Bay embarked on a small whaleboat lying alongside the wharf at Sitka. The members of the
expedition had just had their photographs taken,
and their provisions, tents, and instruments were
on the maindeck of the U.S.S. Pinta. Was it
not an auspicious commencement ? For this also
was the name of the vessel which bore Columbus
to the new world, and we too were bound to the
westward intent on new discoveries.
The Alaskan, published at Sitka, favoured us
with the following paragraph : — " Lieutenant
Schwatka's party for a two month's siege of the
ice-guarded  fortress  of Mount   St.  Elias is now 46
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
made up and ready for the march. The party
consists, besides the Lieutenant, of Professor W.
Libby and Mr. H. W. Seton Karr. Also Joseph
Woods, John Dalton, and Kersunk, an Indian
youth."
The Pinta (Commander Nicholls, U.S.N.) was
built, we were told, originally as a tug-boat, and
as her speed did not exceed four to five knots an
hour, she was an easy object for an " instantaneous
shutter | as she steamed past the old Eussian wharf.
But the Pinta Is well suited for cruising in the
calm fords of the inland passage, or for punishing
refractory Indians, or Tlinkits as they are called
on this part of the coast, by destroying their villages with her jhachine guns and brass howitzers,
and for lying at anchor off the small but gay old
Russian village of Sitka, or the new and unpleasant,
though picturesquely situated, mining-village before-
mentioned of Juneau City, or Harrisburg,—for it
enjoys a double name.
It was said at one time that other vessels on
sighting her were in the habit of flying signals of
distress, because, owing to some eccentricity in her
rudder, and the fact that she had run down several
other vessels, they were fearful of suffering the
same fate themselves. SITKA TO YAKATAT BAY.
47
Several channels may be used to reach the open
sea from Sitka.    We might either have gone out
o o
at once across Sitka Sound, or have kept entirely
to the inland passage—a longer route—as far as
Cross Sound. A middle course was chosen which
gave us a few hours along one of the calm Alaskan
channels before meeting the ocean swell.
Sunset found us skirting the  steep  shores of
r~^::i^';JI§Ss
Mount Fairweather, rising to 15,500 feet above the North Pacific
Ocean at its base.
Chichagoff Island in lat. 570 50', the weather continuing beautifully fine.
Mount Fairweather consented to show its|ff for
only a short time next morning, but in the afternoon, as we steamed slowly past, about twenty
miles from land, the whole Fairweather range was
seen in a cloudless atmosphere, and remained in 48
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
view till sunset, when the darkness, and the necessity of early rising on the morrow, drove us below.
The next morning, July 12th, as I came on deck
at an early hour we were rounding Ocean Cape and
heading for the small harbour near the Indian
village, charted by the U.S. Coast Survey, and
named Port Mulgrave. It was the Pinta!s second
visit. There was no trace of vapour in the sky.
The St. Elias range of Alps, or a great portion of
them, bound the west side of this bay, which is
called Yakatat or Bering Bay.
Without a doubt the scenery at Yakatat is the
most wonderful of its kind in the whole world.
The mountfins are covered with snow and glaciers
from sea-level to summit. The air of early morning in latitude 6o° N. is exceedingly transparent,
while the vastness of these mountains, ranging as
they do from 16,000 to neirly if not quite 20,000
feet, impress the beholder under these conditions
with the sensation' of their being too ethereal to
have any actual existence, or that they cannot be
anything except some unholy illusion that must dissolve and disperse when the sun rises. And this is
to a certain extent what happens. It seemed to be
just what Dore might have conceived as an imaginary view of mountain scenery in the planet Mars. MARVELLOUS SCENERY AT YAKATAT.
49
As the sun rose higher, the shadows grew less dis-
tinct, the planes of distance merged into each other,
the air lost its extreme brilliancy, and the exact
contours became confused. Yet we could hardly
believe that the great mass of Mount St. Elias, the
pointed crest of which rose high above the sea,
was between fifty and sixty miles off.
Imagine Mont Blanc placed close to the sea-shore
with its whole height visible as measured from the
sea-level; then imagine Ben Nevis, the highest
mountain in Great Britain, placed upon the summit
of Mont Blanc, and the total height thus reached
would fall short of the summit of Mount St. Elias.
The latest estimate of its height by the Coast
Survey has made it nearly 20,000 feet, with an
error either way of a few hundred feet.
St. Elias—the last and highest mountain of the
range, and the nearest to the sea—stands on a.
broad base, from which it rises like an Egyptian
pyramid, straight, regular, and massive, from an
icy plateau of enormously extensive glaciers.
Could a blind man be brought to Yakatat, and
have his sight restored wMle each morsel of the
panorama, commencing from the east, was separately
presented to his view, he would exclaim at first
that nothing could surpass its grandeur in that-
D 5o
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
direction; then, as his gaze would gradually be
shifted round to the west, still loftier mountain-
ranges would disclose themselves, till he would
think he must surely have arrived at the climax.
Higher and higher yet they would rise as Mounts
Cook and Vancouver were passed in review, while
words would fail him to express his astonishment
as last of all his eyes would rest on Mount St.
Elias, the crown and summit of all possibilities or
impossibilities of grandeur, seeming to rise sheer
out of the Pacific Ocean with a leap.
From Elias eastward, a semicircle of enormous
peaks surrounds the Bay, gradually dwindling in
importance and in height, even the smallest of them
beiiig a noble mountain : while far back towards
the east, from which we had come, Mount Fair-
Ifeather, which is 16,000 feet in height, glistened
with opalescent light above the forest trees.
Entering the sma||||and-locked harbour at six
a.m. by the narrow entrance,—with which Captain
Nicholls was already acquainted, having been in
•command of the Pinta last year when she visited
this place, we dropped anchor close to the Indian
village.
Not a living thing was visible except a dejected
wolfish-looking dog.    The natives were evidently THE INDIAN VILLAGE.
5i
out sealing, and we might be delayed in our start
for Icy Bay.
However, after blowing a whistle for some time,
canoes were seen coming from some houses on the
mainland. The first contained an old half-blind
Yakatat Indian of characteristic appearance, who
was evidently a 1 shawaan' or medicine-man by
his long uncut hair. By means of a half-breed
boy employed in the ward-room, who spoke better
English  than  our   interpreter,   he  was  made  to
Mount Vancouver, 13,100 feet.
understand that we wished him to despatch a
messenger to the tribe to procure for us two large
canoes and six Indians. He set off on his errand
with a great appearance of haste, after explaining
that it would take two days, being a long journey
towards the head of the Bay where the tribe was
sealing. Nothing was left but to wait, and as
Captain Nicholls had determined to see us fairly
started and on the road, the Pinta waited too.
Meanwhile, we were able to take the bearings
of Mounts Cook, Vancouver, and Malaspina, besides 52
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
other nameless peaks. The wild strawberries were
now ripe and grew in great abundance on the sandhills round the village, while the I snipe' which
congregated in flocks along the edge of the sea were
o     o o o
found to be excellent eating, especially with clam
sauce. In the absence of their owners the Indian
houses were locked up, but I was able to make a
sketch of St. Elias. Before long, to our surprise,
two white men made their appearance alongside in
a 1 dory || or small boat, and turned out to be two
young Swedes newly arrived as traders to replace
the famous Dr. Ballou. One of them, whose
name was Louis Carlsen, informed us that he had'
come to Alaska four years ago from Stromsdal near
Gothenburg, and that with his brother and two
other Swedes by the name of Andersen they had
taken up the I store' built here two years ago by
the Alaska Commercial Company and vacated last
year as not profitable, as well as a small store which
they had constructed on Kaiak Island further up
the coast, where they were engaged in hunting
and in trading with the natives.
He ^rther informed us that his partners would
call here next month, in a small schooner they
owned; following the example of one of them, he
intend#d to visit his home in Sweden, and return ■J*
■"SB™"
eeSSHBl
M
TWO SWEDISH TRADERS.
53
from thence in the spring, with a wife. He expressed himself as very pleased to see the man-
o'-war, because the Indians had lately become
troublesome and threatening, but now they would
do whatever was required of them. He had even
been obliged to menace them with the visit of a
o
f !xi
The Village of the Yakatat Indians.
man-o'-war if they did not behave. Our timely
arrival had thus acted as a corroboration of his
threat. The Yakatats have lately been distilling a
good deal of the vile spirit like vodki from sugar,
and have been so frequently drunk that the traders
were glad their store was as far removed from the
village as it was.    His brother Olaf was waiting 54
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
for him at Kaiak Island and would return with
him to Sweden, for the first and last time in twelve
years. Their small "schooner would be laid up to
winter at Kaiak. From thence they would go by
canoe to Prince William Sound, where they could
pick up the Alaska Commercial Company's schooner,
and thus reach Kodiaf| Island, where probably a
vessel would call in September, on her way to San
Francisco, from Unalaska, or if not, the schooner
itself would be going down to California.
o       o
It was not, altogether, with unmixed pleasure
we found that there were white traders here, as we
had been informed that the post had not been
taken up since the pJaska Commercial Company
haS vacated it, and that the natives did not now
make use of, or understand money as a medium
of exchange. We had, in consequence, brought
a supply of "%ading material* with us. We
managed, however, to get rid of it, and it made
no difference in the end, except entailing a terrible
amount of haggling, "chin-music' as the lieu-
tenant styled it, with the Yakatat Indians.
Next morning 1 George," the second chief, came
on board, and was followed soon after by Noearpoo,
the chief of the Yakatats, dressed in a U.S.S.
Adams if band and uniform, presented to him when
mBmmwsm MISFORTUNES OF PREVIOUS EXPLORERS.
55
that vessel came to arrest and bring to justice the
murderer of two white men. It appears that the
latter had come to "prospect" for indications of
gold, and that soon after their arrival the Indian
or Indians, for some fancied grudge, had shot down
both of them as they were landing from their boat.
All the visits of white men to Yakatat, few
and far between, seem to have been attended
with misfortune, for another party which also
landed from a man-o'-war, with the object of exploring the source of some gold-containing black
sand,* became so much discouraged by the accidental deaths from drowning of some members of
the party soon after their arrival, that they gave
up their investigations and returned to Sitka without accomplishing their object.
Meanwhile the chief, with his gorgeous coloured
neckcloth and gold uniform, had been taken to the
captain's cabin, where, with the two interpreters, we
descended to interview him. After a long speech,
which he had evidently prepared beforehand, about
white men always speaking the truth and Indians
sometimes, he was asked for information, and told
us that some of the Indians were in the habit of
* This was subsequently visited and inspected by our party while
awaiting the return of the gunboat. 56
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
hunting in the neighbourhood of Icy Bay, but
<c when they tried to come near the great mountain,
then Indians always died," as the interpreter
rendered it, meaning they failed; also that Icy
Bay * was i best place, for Indians no cross ice."
After more talk the captain presented him with
a U.S.S. Pinta riband to wear instead of the
Adams one, and the interview was over. Meantime, another canoe was despatched up the Bay to
fetch a man said to have been half-way up Mount
St. Elias. I strongly suspected these were merely
pretexts to keep us here as long as possible, since
it was evident to them that the ship was on
a peaceful errand. For it afterwards appeared,
according to the assertion of the chief, who was
jealous of " George," the man despatched in the
canoe,   that the  latter   did  not   start  until the
next day.
ft
It was also more than probable that Mr. Noearpoo
had never been very far away, but on the sight of
Hie war-vessel had hastily I vacated the situation "
and left for | parts unknown," until satisfied that she
had not come to bombard his village.    But it was
* The Great Agassiz Glacier or the Malaspina Plateau might
preferably be crossed by future expeditions, the landing being made
at Yakatat Bay instead of Icy Bay, in order to avoid the surf at the
latter place. mm
0
o
o
CO
T5
a3
3
CQ
ill! I DISCOVERIES IN A SORCERER'S GRAVE.
59
natural enough that the Indians should have been
anxious to prolong the stay of the vessel, for money
soon began to be in brisk circulation. Many curios
were brought to the ship's side and at once bought
up by the officers who were making collections of
native objects. The Indians too were now all the
more desirous of money, as a disreputable Indian
woman, known as Mrs. Toms, had made her way
up from Sitka in a large hydah or war-canoe, and
was busy trading, and supposed to be possessed of
a large fortune amassed by doubtful methods. The
greater part of the articles of native manufacture
brought for sale consisted in baskets of a variety of
shapes, neatly plaited out of roots, dyed different
colours and designed in different patterns ; charms,
carved walrus tusks, bows and arrows, and horn
spoons. Some one went out in a canoe and made
a great 1 find i of some boxes in the grave of
a medicine-man in a retired part of the bay.
Whenever a I shawaan i dies his charms and other
articles that he has used are placed in boxes, buried
with him, and left to rot unless rescued as curios,
for no Indian will touch them. As no Indian even
dares to approach the grave of a medicine-man, the
abstractions can never be discovered or lamented.
In the evening the two sacksfull wrere spread out 6o
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
on the floor in the captain's cabin for inspection,
and comprised, among other things, a quantity of
masks of painted wood, a leather shawl, ornamented
with sea-parrots' bills, and a crown of wild-goats'
horns. Some one else had bought for a few cents
a charm hung on a string and resembling a small
whetstone. The use of this for a long time rested
a mystery until our Tlinkit interpreter discovered
that, during three days previous to starting out
sealing, the Yakatat Indians are not to scratch
their backs with the hand, but when the irritation
becomes absolutely unendurable they may use
such stones as these like scrapers. Any man
violating this rule will probably be drowned—
accidentally.
Everything not to be taken wi§h us to Icy Bay
was stored in the chief's house. I found that my
large Alpine hat had been left at Sitka, and therefore had another one made by the quartermaster
out of sail-cloth. It was light and comfortable:
the brim was of enormous sizi, and was the subject
of much pleasantry, such as, "When the top of
Elias is seen to assume an umbrella shape, then we
shgfil know for certain that the party has attained
that mudji-desired spot." To make sure of having
a comfortable jiat, another one, of basket-work, was
i
■wpw IUWH
MY HATS.
61
ordered from the chief's wife, who promised to put
it in hand at once ; but not even the assurance
that "the Queen of England would see it' was
sufficient to ensure its being more than an unfulfilled promise. (     62    )
^^^^^g CHAPTEE III.  hBH^H
We leave Yakatat for Icy Bay—Landing in the Surf—The Base
Camp—Strawberries and Bear-Trails—The Start for Mount St.
Elias—Forcing a Glacial Torrent—A Mighty Stream—The
Quicksands—A Mountainous Moraine Overgrown with Forest—
An Ice-buried River.
Camp by the Seashore,
Icr Bay, July iSth, 1886.
After our one brilliant day it rained continuously
the remainder of the time the Pinta was at
Yakatat, a period altogether of five days, during
which the natives found other pretexts for delaying
us. A man was sent to ask leave to use a large
canoe said to be laif. by in a lagoon—two days'
journey, for the owner was out sealing. He returned, and the n||n were to have set off to fetch
the canoe at three o'clock next morning, in order
to ca|ch high-tide, but did not actually start until
mid-day, and then came back with the intelligence
that she was decayed and rotten.
Then the United States Navy, in the shape of
Captain Nicholls, came to the rescue.    He would
■M FROM YAKATAT TO ICY BAY.
63
take us to Icy Bay in the Pinta, and we were to
be allowed to use one of the whale-boats until we
were fetched away, or came down to Sitka in the
fall of the year. If possible, the Pinta would
return for us about the 5th of September.
On the evening of July 16th, at eight o'clock,
the Pinta steamed out of Yakatat, having shipped
thre,e Indians and a small "dug-out' Yakatat
canoe, the property of Professor Libbey, large
enough to hold two persons comfortably.
After the Fourth of July Oration by f the
Judge," wThich we had been favoured with at
Sitka, in which he read the § Declaration of Independence' and protested against the crimes of
" the old country," and which I had endeavoured,
however, to applaud, it was considered to be a
matter of surprise that I should have plucked up
sufficient spirit to suggest that Mount St. Elias
might be entirely, and must be one fourth, in
British territory.*
* Mount St. Elias, hitherto considered the highest mountain in
North America (though now, according to Lieutenant Allen, Mount
Wrangel, a volcano at the forks of the Copper River, in Eastern
Central Alaska, rises to over 20,000 feet), is the longest snow-climb
in the world outside the Arctic or Antarctic regions, and with the
additional exception of Greenland, is the birthplace of the most
extensive glaciers known. Of these, there are probably 2400 square
miles of flat plains of ice between the mountains and the sea, not
taking into account snow-fields or inland glaciers, and included 64
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
The boundary line between British Columbia
and So#th-Eafc Alaska, according to the treaty,
cannot be at a greater distance from the ocean
than thirty miles. But if |§he divide or summit
of the watershed be less than that distance from
the sea, then the boundary follows the summit
of the watershed up to the 141st degree of
longitude. It then runs due north, coinciding
with the 141st meridian, until it joins the Arctic
Ocean.
At four o'clock next morniig we were slowly
coasting along the shores of Icy Bay in a dense
foggy r$in.     Nothing  could  be   imagined  more
oo«/ o o
dismal. We were cheered by the thought that
we must be considerably closer to Mount St. Elias
than we were at Yakatat, and indeed we were
prepared to see it towering overhead through some
break in the clouds, if they only would break.
But the Pinta's last view of Mount S|| Elias was
that from Yakatat, for not until after her departure
entirely between Cross Sound, at tf|e extremity of the Inland
Passage, and the Copper River. Vancouver, who had, as he says,
many opportunities for fixing the true position of the great mountain,
gives it as lat. 6o° 27', and long. 1400 30/.H Professor Davidson gives
its position as lat. 6o° 22A 6", and long. 1400 54'. It thus lies to
the east of the 141st meridian of longitude west from Greenwich,
confirmed by my own bearings, the rango&tself ranking as the third
highest in the world, on which we had set foot for the first time. FROM YAKAHAT TO ICY BAY.
did the range break loose from its encircling
clouds.
Probably this was the first time that a ship has
ever entered Icy Bay, by which name the slight
angle in the coast-line is honoured, so caution was
necessary. The growing day disclosed a sandy
sloping shore, without the least indication of shelter
from the ocean, stretching away straight, remorseless, and yellow on either side as far as the eye
could reach east and west, white with roaring
breakers, and half obscured by fog. As the Indians
asserted they were in the habit of running their
canoes ashore here when they came sealing, the
ship was brought to an anchor.
The Pacific swell rolled slowly under us towards
the beach, on which it was breaking with a threatening aspect very disturbing to landsmen. Clouds
of spray and vapour drifted inland, but behind the
beach there seemed to lie lagoons which were
steaming, as though warm, and further off still
there were visible the tops of fir-trees. Then the
mist closed down and everything was hidden.
The Pacific surf is very uncertain, and rises or
calms down without apparent cause, as the result
of distant storms at sea.    Still, on this part of the
Alaskan  shore-line,  Fafrweather Ground,   as  the
E
r 66
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
whalers named it, fine weather is generally experienced in summer, with calms, which are not
agreeable to sailing vessels. But how the winds
blow in winter!
Shortly after we had dropped anchor, Lieutenant
Dumbough was sent in one of the waistboats to
examine the surf, and at midday Lieutenant-
Commander Nicholls determined to do his best
to put u$j ashore with the supplies. Lieutenant
Emmons, §n charge of t|jie first boat, put off at once
from the ship's side, and after waiting his opportunity was able to beach his boat stern first,
paying out an anchor rope from the bows, the
anchor ha'^ng been dropped fifty yards from
shore to assist in putting off again through the
breakers.
As soon as she grounded the sailors jumped into
the water and ran her up high and dry. At times
as seen from the ship the little boat had appeared
quite submerged behind some big roller.
Four boatloads sufficed to land the whole of the
stores of supplies and instruments. Although the
boats were empty on their return, yet the task of
punching them again through the surf was one
of more danger than the landing.*   The last boat
* I^think if the surf had been any higher we should have been fcfc J>
LANDING.
67
beached being the one that was to remain with us
in default of our having obtained hydah-canoes at
Yakatat, had no anchor laid out for launching, and
was securely hauled up out of reach of the tide on
the crest of the sand ridge.
Perhaps the best part of the day's performance
was that of " Bear Hunter," our best Yakatat, who
die/l a few days after from poison, and who volunteered to steer the little canoe, hewn out a single
small tree, without any assistance, through the
surf, being carried eventually on the crest of a
wave high upon the beach, where we were all
waiting to receive him.
The little party of five whites and four Indians,
" the first that ever burst" on to the wild shores of
Icy Bay, was now fairly on the way. The Pinta
had succeeded in putting us ashore in a very wet
condition (but not nearly so wet as wTe were to be
when we tried to depart). As she steamed southwards she whistled a farewell note, but our cheers
in reply must have been drowned by the noisy
surf.
The camp was pitched by the freshwater lagoon
which we had seen behind the ridge.    The ground
unable to land. Future explorers, if any further attempts are made
to ascend,Mount St. Elias, should land either at Cape Yagtag or
Yakatat Bav. If
68
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
was covered and almost hidden in places by ripe
strawberries of fabulous size, and was crossed in
various directions by bear-tracks, also of a fabulous
size as it seemed. As soon as everything had been
stowed and the tents pitched, the Indians went
sealing. Seal meat and blubber are as necessary
to the Indiailas bread to the white man. They
soon returned with a seal and a wild swan, plenty of
which birds were flying round the lagoon uttering
JO o o
harsh ciies, their wMite plumage contrasting strongly
against the dsifk woods behind, which in turn con-
trasted with the ice beyond them. It was full-
sized, but had not been able to fly, for the feathers
were immature. Later on I pursued one of these
birds successfully in the canoe, which nearly got
capsi|ed du|ing the operation from the recoil of
the gun.
Some of the bear-tralks along the beach, close to
the camp, measured fourteen inches by eight, and
there are manjp others no doubt much larger. Bear
and fox trails cross the sandy soil in every direction like a  network,  giving  one the idea that
*    o o
enormous numbers of these animals must inhabit
the very small piece of forest on this side of the
bay, which is the only piece in the whole region,
for everything else seems to be snow and glacier. PACKING.
69
To-day being Sunday we remain quietly at rest,
and start early to-morrow for | the great mountain,"
as the Indians call it. At rest, that is, with the
exception of the preparations for a fortnight's
assault on the mountain, testing the mercurial
barometers and the thermometers, and making the
arrangements involved in a scientific and moun-
taineering expedition. Dalton, who is cook, is to
stay in charge of everything here, which will be a
sort of base of operations. However, Woods, who
goes with us, cooks nearly as well. We take fifty
pounds of I hard tack," twTenty-five pounds of flour,
ten pounds of chocolate, besides tea, sugar, coffee,
and various tins of canned meat; in fact, enough
for nearly two weeks with the additional supplies
when the Indians return for them. Also three
magazine rifles, all of the same calibre. Among
the scientific apparatus, mostly the property of
the Professor, come two large mercurial mountain
barometers, a hypsometer, and several aneroids
and thermometers. A prismatic compass lent to
me by the Eoyal Geographical Society, will be
one of the most useful of all our instruments.
We take also two small tents from Edgington's
(London), wThich will prove exceedingly useful, the
two tents presented by the Northern Pacific Bail- I
70
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
f
way to the expedition being too large for packing.
Amongst other things are two alpenstocks and
two ice-axes, fashioned after a rude manner by
a Eussian blacksmith at Sitka; besides one real
English ice-axe, which I found being used as a hoe
by an old Eussian peasant, who had no conception
of its original use; waterproofs and blankets for
the party, and for my own use a sleeping bag
made out of opossum skin, while the Indians seem
to be satisfied with a cotton sheet only as night
covering. The Professor contributes half-a-dozen
pairs of "ice-creepers' as used at Niagara Falls,
in which he places greater confidence than in the
ice-axes. We have also some Esquimaux clothing
for use on the ice, the property of Mr. Schwatka,
and for the ascent a coil of two hundred feet of
rope.
After the arrangements for to-morrow were
nearly completed, I pvent out with our ! prospector " to look for bears, but as Elias gave signs
of becoming visible, and the bears did not, I
hurried back to camp to make some sketches.
After a time the-mountain slowly appeared like a
dissolving view, while the summit played hide-and-
seek with the clouds, which were shifting uneasily
like side-scenes at a pantomime, preparatory to a fe^Jfc
■H
SEALS, STRAWBERRIES, AND BEARS.
7i
general movement. The Indians went out in the
evening, and came back with more seals and a red
fox. A seal meanwhile came up on the beach close
to camp. Over fifteen hundred hair-seals are said
to have been killed in three days, by a party in
Yakatat Bay, with clubs, and considering the large
numbers we have seen, and the ease with which
the Indians seem to go out and club them, it is
not difficult to believe it.
The Indians hunt the seals systematically in
Yakatat Bay, where they are consequently very
shy. We saw large numbers in the sea on our
return, but besides being contrary to the laws of
the United States, it would be useless for any
party of white men to hope to kill more than one
or two.
One can pass the time very comfortably among
the sand-hills, which are perfect natural strawberry
beds, moving a few yards further to fresh ground
as the supply on the spot becomes exhausted;
meantime keeping a look-out along the edge of the
forest, over the long grass, for the grey-coloured
round back of a St. Elias cinnamon or grizzly bear.
These animals evidently come out in large numbers after seal (or strawberries), judging by the
immense quantity of tracks. Ill
72 SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
The trails are thickest at that point on the beach
where the forest approaches nearest to the sea, for
the great brown bear of Alaska is a shy animal,
and when he comes out in.the afternoon about four
o'clock, his favourite hour, to catch a seal, he likes
to have his retreat handy.
A mile or two away wide stretches of water can
be seen through openings in the forest, evidently
the large lake which the early navigators saw from
the mastheads of their ships, and which is marked
in their maps as being of considerable extent.
Our Indians say plenty of fish can be got there.
The side of Icy Bay| on which wTe are now
camped, is low, flat forest, some ten miles either
way, and bounded on the land side by the enormous glaciers which are just v|fcible over the fir-
trees. The west side of Icy Bay, as can be seen,
is formed by a glacier whfeh has projected itself
for some distance into the ocean.
The Second Camp, July 20th,
Sunset.
Yesterday we left §fhe base camp at seven in the
morning. The Professor was left behind in order
to effect simultaneous observations with the second
mercurial barometer, and will rejoin us to-morrow Ih^Jfe
THE START.
73
with the Indians, who  have  returned for more
supplies.
After transporting the things in the small canoe
for half a mile up the lagoon, which then came to
a sudden end, the _packs were adjusted, and the
party followed the shore to the westward, more or
less under the guidance of the Indians, who were
making for the large river at the head of the Bay,
intending that we should follow up the bank.
The Start for Mount St. Elias.
Woods carried a tent, spade, pick, and pan, for
gold-prospecting purposes. Schwatka carried the
mercurial barometer and a rifle. I carried the
ice-axes and another rifle: the remaining things
were divided equally into packs among the Indians
of about fifty or sixty pounds to each pack.
After following the shore for two miles an off-
shoot of the main glacial river was reached, over
which   the Indians conveyed us on their  backs, I'M-:
74
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
although the greatest depth was but three feet.
The heaviest of us, who weighed eighteen stone,
was landed quite dry upon the opposite bank,
while the lightest of the three was deposited halfway overpn a sitting position in a foot and a half
of water; such are the uncertainties of fate !
This stream issued from the forest across flats of
glacier mud, and came from the direction in which
we were going as a j§hallow muddy stream. We
wished to follow it up, but the Indians, probably
on account of what they had been told at Yakatat,
were disinclined to do so. It would have been
better had we done so, for it was, as we suspected,
an offshoot from the main river at the head of Icy
Bay, and would have saved a long detour. Had
we then known of the miles of ice-cold water we
should have to wade through yesterday, of the deep
creeks, and of the mud and quicksands to be passed,
and how wet and chilled the party was to be before night, we should have disdained being carried
across this stream by the Indians.
After this came a fine- wide sandy plain lying
between the belt of timber and the ocean, covered
with sweet-smelling tall purple flowers, rushes,
and wjld strawberries in profusion, and dotted
wii|h small fir-trees growing more thickly towards
1L A LARGE RIVER.
75
the forest, and more sparsely scattered towards
the ocean. Three miles further and our progress
to the west was barred by the main stream, up the
left bank of which the way now lay.
We were on the edge of the forest and on the
bank of a large glacial river which was spread out
in the shape of a fan, and appeared to issue from
between a glacier and a line of elevatedHand. It
was a large river, but not larger than one might
expect, as forming one of the many streams which
drain the vast expanse of snow and ice which
covers and encircles the St. Elias range. Schwatka
at once named it "Jones' Eiver," after the proprietor of the New York Times. Its main stream
appeared to issue from the apex of its fan-shaped
delta, but many smaller ones joined it, rushing
out from under the ice of the opposite glacier,
which we named the " Guyot Glacier," after that
distinguished scientist. We had been aware that
a glacier existed there, for it forms the west side
of Icy Bay, and has been named Icy Cape, and
described by numerous navigators, from Vancouver
and Beechey to Tebenkoff and the United States
Coast Survey.
Across a gravelly delta six miles wide, edged in
on the opposite shore by a glacier, the river lay 76
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
spread in numberless channels, shallow, swift, ice-
cold, and milk-white with a brownish tinge, and a
black oily scum. It reached jand swept back the
ocean across a long bar marked out by angry lines
of surf, i Bears had recently been travelling along
the margin, and had left fresh tracks. After stopping to sketch and rest, we followed northwards
up the bank of the river. The Indians went slowly,
and lagged behind. The day had turned out
cloudless and the sun was hot. Wide expanses
of mud were crossed. The surface was firm, tenacious, shaking, and jelly-like—a crust, as it seemed,
floating on soft and treacherous quicksands. On
one of these mud-flats an especially soft place had
to be crossed, and the dread of a possible breaking
through the crust made it nervous work. Woods got
over first and crossed a channel on to firm ground ;
the Indians following dropped part of their packs
to lighten themselves, sinking thigh deep as they
did so. In their tracks lanes of water were left on
the surface of the mud, as though squeezed from a
sponge. This part seemed firmer as we followed.
Whether this was the case, or our broad-soled
boots saved us, we sank in less than was to be
expected.
The party rested, considerably exhausted,  for QUICKSANDS AND MORAINES,
77
an hour on the other side, on terra firma, and
continued the march at 2 p.m., along a wooded
point which stretched far out into the wide bed
of the main river, and crossing a side stream by
means of a fallen tree, arrived at more mud-flats,
but kept this time near the grass and rushes, which
grew along the edge of the forest. It might be
supposed that the forest was preferable to rivers
and quicksands; but the growth was so dense as
to offer but very slow prospects of locomotion to
men with packs on their backs. The river, like all
rivers of glacial source, was now on the usual daily
rise, and had invaded the flat lands, while the
water felt icy cold to the feet, which were numbed
and senseless after such prolonged wading. Bruin
is the great road-maker of Alaska, and we had been
following mostly in his broad beaten tracks.
About 5 p.m. further progress directly north
towards Mount St. Elias became barred by a huge
buried glacier, overtopped by immense masses of
moraine and overgrown thickly with shrubs and
fir-trees, which were becoming disordered nnd
destroyed, where they grew on the edges or faces
of the moraines by reason of the slow but irresistible movement forward of the mass urged on
by the pressure of the glaciers belAd.    This had 78
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
appeared from the base-camp as a low range of
hills. We now saw its true nature. It was the
face of a glacier, buried by immense masses of
terminal moraine, which, being overgrown with
trees, had seemed from a distance like ordinary
hilly ground. Now and then avalanches of stones
rattled down its slopes. Ice protruded in places.
Torrents burst up tpxough the stones like rivers,
created full-grown Tjjfithout any infancy or childhood, issuing from some mountain side. One
particularly large one we named Fee Springs,
jplimbing some distance up to reconnoitre, it was
se^i that a mile further on the timber grew
gradualjy thinner, and gave place to gravel; we
/pecided, to camp there on a dry part of the river
bed.
The flat expanse of the estuary lay stretched seawards, fr||§&d lfc" the black line of timber which
we had skirted, and bounded by a vast glacier
named afterwards the "Great Guyot Glacier,"
having its face so bespattered with rocks and dirt
that only here and there was the ice visible. This
glacier seemed to extend from this point quite flat
for ten or fifteen miles westward, and at least
twenty miles south-west by south far out into the
sea', thus forming the west side of Icy Bay, named THE SECOND CAMP.
79
by previous explorers Icy Cape. On climbing up
the moraine after bears yesterday evening I found
progression so difficult that a return to camp was
preferable to destroying one's clothes on the chance
of a shot.
For supper we had chocolate, bacon, and " hardtack." One of the Indians slept wrapped in a sheet
on the gravel, with his head on a coil of rope; the
others made a tent out of withes and a ground-
sheet. Woods and Kersunk, or Fred, as he prefers
to be called, put up one of the tents. Schwatka
and myself should have done the same, as the
mosquitoes were troublesome, but we slept in the
open.
This morning at 9 a.m. the Indians started back
to the base-camp to guide the Professor, and bring
up another load of necessaries. A cloudless day
again, which we employed in making barometrical
observations.    A light wind from the north-west.
Meanwhile, there are two days for rest in anticipation of unknown hardships ahead—rest which
somehow seems sweeter from the thought that to-
morrow the remainder of the party will be toiling
up the Jones Eiver through cold water and quicksands and thorny woods. But hitherto our rest
has  not  been   altogether   undisturbed.     Curious H
80
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
I
noises have emanated from the glaciers all around,
rumblings and i travelling cracks," which, as the
Lieutenant remarked, seemed to go right to the
top of Elias and back again. Some of the St.
Elias bears are supposed to be of a peculiar grey
colour from living constantly like polar bears in
1 thrilling regions of thick-ribbed ice." The ever-
lasting little avalanches of stones sounded as if
they were dislodged by the paws of one of these
animals, and made one look up uneasily each time
at the moraine. That bears were plentiful and of
no insignificant measurements was evident from
their tracks upon the wet mud in every direction.
One of the party pretended to have been startled
from his slumbers by a ridiculous concatenation of
noises. He had just composed himself to sleep
after saying " good-bye," when, from the steep
sides of Mount Vancouver, or of St. Elias, came
the distant rumblings of an avalanche. This was
followed up| by such a series. of noises from the
Great Guyot Glacier, that it seemed as though
something had gone wrong in its internal mechanism. Then a whole troop of St. Elias bears
seemed to be flying to our camp for refuge, to
judge by the falling stones from the moraine above
us.    Nearer came the sound and nearer, culminat- A MOVING FOREST.
81
ing by the tent door in a loud whirring of wings,
till our sleeper's heart I had leaped up into his
throat and commenced dangling," as he declared,
when there appeared—a tiny humming-bird with
iridescent plumage gleaming in the sun, stationary
in air, with vibrating wings. A humming-bird in
Icy Bay!
This afternoon I made a reconnaissance with
Woods, for our journey on the day after to-morrow.
I concluded we should have to cross the river somehow, to the other glacier, which was smoother, the
ice-mountain-moraine being formed of movable
and sharp boulders, and densely overgrown with
brushwood and shrubs of beech, birch, and fir.
It was an extraordinary spectacle. How far the
thicket continued, or where the moraine ceased
and the ice came to the surface, was impossible to
guess. The highest point visible was 600 feet
above the river. The top was evidently moving
over the base a few feet daily, and kept rolling
trees and stones, as the ice melted, on to the river
plain below.
A constant undermining of the base by the river
was going on, and milky streams gushed out from
half-way up as well as from under the base.
In two hours we approached the spot where the
F
\ IP
II
hLU
82
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
river issued from an ice-canon, penned in between
walls of ice. Icebergs and stranded blocks of
ice strewed the banks, others were floating down
with the current. A few yards higher up the river
issued from under the glacier. The mountain-
moraine had bridged it over. The two glaciers had
met together and hushed its murmur. A mighty
river, as large as the Thames, had disappeared from
sight as completely as if it had never existed.
If we can penetrate the brushwood with our
packs, we can cross Jones Eiver twenty times over
without Ibeing aware of its location, as it lies buried
under the ice. St. Elias was in sight, and seemed
as far away as ever. The sky was clear, but a thick
fog-bank hung over the sea, defining exactly the
contour of the coast-line. (   83   )
CHAPTER IV.
Waiting by the Ice—The Indians Return for more Provisions—A
vast Moraine overgrown with Trees and Resting upon Moving
Ice—Parted from the Guides—Stopped by a Lake of Bergs—We
Separate to find a Way—A Dammed-up Torrent Breaks out
afresh—Gradual Burial of a Forest Island—Loss of the Professor—Fire, Ice, and Water—We Start again—More Glacial
Lakes and the Great TyndaU Glacier—The Fifth Camp reached
—Preparations for the Final Ascent.
The Second Camp, July 21st,
Sunset.
We closed the tents hermetically last night and
were not troubled by the mosquitoes.. Eose at
noon to-day and breakfasted. Weather foggy, and
inclined to rain. The four Indians and the Professor arrived at 1 p.m., having taken a shorter way,
starting at 7 a.m. He reported that the Indians
reached the base-camp at 6 p.m. last night, having
clubbed three seals on the way. They had heard
shots fired a long distance up the coast, and thought
it was a party of Yakatats. We think they are
Copper Eiver Indians. The Indians managed to
avoid the quicksands this time by wading some 84
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
channels of the river, but some of the packs got
wetted. We hope to make the base of the mountain in three or perhaps in two days.
We have determined to take the barometrical
measurements of the altitudes reached over sea-
level on our return journey, which is the best way,
in case no altitude worth recording is reached.
I
!§:*
N
1
If
The Third Camp (on the Ice),
July 22d, Evening.
A fine day. The whole party (as the barometrical observations are to be made on the return)
left camp this morning at 6 a.m., having in our
packs sufficient for eight days, and making a
cache of the rest under a mackintosh sheet.
Kept alongside the river for some way, having
to wade waist-deep in places. The water felt
icy-cold, and blocks of ice were floating down
the current. Then the Indians struck away
through the woods over the moraine. This was
a portion of the immense terminal moraine of
the "Great Agassiz Glacier" as we named it, which
is of enormous, extent, and consists of rocks,
granite, trachyte, and basalt, and stones, which
have fallen, or been torn from the mountain
sides, and then carried forward by the constant *m
CROSSING AN OVERGROWN MORAINE.
movement of the ice, till they have collected
during the lapse of centuries into a perfect zone
of mountains superimposed upon the glacier all
along its edges, eight or ten miles in breadth.
Under these piles of moving stones, which are
for ever being carried forward, lies the glacier
ice, three or four hundred feet in thickness at
the edge, and much thicker elsewhere; while a
tangled forest of spruce and birch, maple and
alder, is growing along its extremity, so thickly
and closely, that it becomes exceedingly difficult,
especially to men with large packs on their backs,
to force a way through; as though it were not
difficult enough already to walk on loose rocks of
every size, varying from that of a house to that
of a paving-stone.
But the advancing mass, for it is advancing, is
not content with having a forest over it, but it
must needs have one under it also, as it gradually
covers and buries the narrowing strip of timber.
This belt of undergrowth turned out narrower than
we expected. It was half a mile only; beyond
lay barren moraines or enormous mounds of stones
heaped together over the ice and more or less
compacted together with age, stretching eastward
as far as the eye could reach, and forming the most 86
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
unpleasant walking imaginable. Morsels of slate,
granite, porphyry, felspar, trachyte, and plutonic
debris were mixed together. The underlying ice
very rarely protruded. Here and there lay deep
pools of clear water. In the afternoon the Indians,
who were behind, twice went off at a tangent in a
different direction from that we were taking, with-
out giving any notice of their intention. The
second time, they got separated from us by a mile,
and the two parties sat on the tops of two moraine
mounds making signals which, on account of the
distance, we could not understand. The only thing
to be done was to exercise a little patience, and
soon the proud and stubborn Yakatats found it to
be a case of Mahomet and the mountain, and were
seen making their way across the glacier to join
us, annoyed possibly because they had degenerated
from guides to mere porters.
Meanwhile some of the party went prospecting
for the best route, as we were shut in and surrounded by badly crevassed portions of the glacier.
We had been making "for the west flank of a range
of hills which seemed the only obstacle to a clear
view of the base of St. Elias, which now commenced to tower grandly overhead. This range was
not over a mile distant now.    The slopes looked NORTH   PACIFIC    OCEAN 111 II
II A GLACIAL LAKE.
89
smooth, green, and grassy; the lower parts were
timbered. It seemed a forbidden paradise which
we were never to reach. The Indians had kept
constantly exclaiming that they saw wild mountain
goats on it, which was quite impo&ible at that
distance. All day we had been following what
seemed the line of juncfLon of two glaciers, with a
perceptible depression, as though a river were undermining it. Between us and this range lay what
appeared to be a rough ice-surface strewn with
seracs or small icebergs, and lying lower than the
glacier-surface. The searchers came back reporting
this to be a lake, and quite impassable. The ice
terminated in steep cliffs. It was a lake covered
with morsels broken from the glaciers. The only
indications of the existence of water was the perfectly flat arrangement of the pieces of ice, which
showed they must be floating. Named it after the
President of the Italian Geographical Society—
Lake Castani.
It was getting dark, and nothing remained except
to look for a camping-place on the glacier.
This we found at last on a flat piece of gravel
washed down by a stream from the melting ice,
like the delta of the Jones Eiver in miniature.
The Indians to-night seem ravenously hungry. is
90
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
The Third Camp (on the Ice),
July 23c?, Afternoon.
The next thing to be done was to find a way off
the glacier, or at least northward and westward. If
we kept on the ice, the road to Mount St. Elias lay
to the westward, round the spur or over the lower
part of the low range. The Professor thought this
way was barred to us on account of the crevasses
in the ice, and set out with an Indian this morning in an easterly direction, along the edge of the
glacier, to find a way on to the land. I started
out with an Indian to the westward with the same
object. |poth parties agreed to be back by 3 p.m.
at latest.    It was then 9 a.m.
The crevasses, as I had expected, turned out
merely deep corrugations or waves in the surface
of the ice, not fissures. The Indian frequently
stopped and pointed to his moccasins, which certainly were worn through ; but to an Indian accustomed to go barefoot over rough ground what did
that signify ? However, to induce him to follow,
•fie had to be given a thick pair of woollen socks
that I happened to have. To make a long story
short, the Indian and I found a way out of the maze
or cul-de-sac in which the party had found them- AN ISLAND IN THE GLACIER.
9i
selves, after two hours fast walking mainly over
waves of white ice sprinkled with rocks and stones,
with here and there deep mud, on to a small timbered island of thirty acres in extent, situated upon
what looked like the damp bottom of a quondam
lake. It was not, strictly speaking, an island when
we reached it, for the lake was, for some reason,
below its usual level. This island was bordered
on one side by the glacier, which was gradually
advancing over it, crushing up the tall pines,
rending them into matchwood, and heaping one
over the other—a scene of gradual destruction by a
resistless force. The onset of the glacier was overriding and burying the patch of wood. This small
island was separated from our low range of hills
by a flat expanse of damp gravel, looking like the
bed of some mighty torrent the waters of which
had been suddenly turned aside into some other
channel or dammed up altogether. Subsequently
it appeared that the latter wTas what had taken
place.
Cutting off and taking as a proof and sample
some green branches, like Noah's dove, we reached
camp at one p.m. once more.
By three o'clock the other white man had not
returned;   but at three-thirty this afternoon the 92
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
Indian came back with a note from him saying
that he was three hours from camp, and that he
fancied a good passage existed across the river
which came from the east, but that he had not
yet crossed, and that it would take him another
hour to do so. Before starting he had agreed to
come opposite the camp and fire his rifle and
burn a magnesium light, which he thought would
be visible a mile aw|ty, if he succeeded in crossing.
But if there had been found a road to the westward, the fact would be signalled to him by means
of the flag we had brought.
Meanwhile   the  Indians  had  been  grumbling
o o
audibly. As translated by Kersunk, the boy
interpreter, their mutterings signified that they
would prefer going no farther, for their moccasins
were worn out. If they were to desert us it might
make progress i||to the interior of the St. Elias
alpine region impossible with our heavy packs.
But after a little persuasion there suddenly
appeared, as if by magic, and from whence it
was impossible to say, two new pairs of moccasins.
But tl|j absent one has not returned, so the
rest of the party, guided by the Indian who had
accompanied me,  set off with the packs to the A LOST PROFESSOR
westward by the newly-discovered way, while I
am waiting for him with Schwatka.
We have put up the flag-pole. Nothing breaks
the silence of the frozen wilderness excepting
cracks and groanings in the ice or the roll like
distant thunder of an occasional avalanche of snow
down the sides of St. Elias (or 1 ambulance," as the
lieutenant called it, d la Malaprop), which woke
corresponding echoes in the mountains on the west,
for there was no wind stirring; or in our more
immediate neighbourhood an avalanche of mud,
stones, and slush breaking out of some crevice
with a rush, and threatening in a miniature way
to overwhelm us. Schwatka is seriously ill with
a chill, which has brought on fever, ague, and
pleuritic pains.
Up till dark we kept examining the glacier with
field-glass and telescope, and sweeping the horizon
in search of the lost Professor. Then we had
dinner—a quarter of a " cracker,} apiece,—tireless,
for there is no wood.
The Fourth Camp (on an Island in the Ice),
July 24th, Sunset.
Before we lay down to sleep, towards ten o'clock
last night, from a high  point on  the glacier, a 94
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
cheering sight was visible, in the shape of an
enormous cloud of blue smoke which rose from
the spot which Woods and the Indians had reached.
Woods was evidently determined that no one else
should be given in as I missing," for it rivalled in
bulk St. Elias himself. But from the same direction came an incomprehensible sound as of a
roaring, rushing torrent, through the still night air.
In the morning I had found no sign of such a
thing in that direction, only a damp river-bed
between the island and the range of hills. Woods
had evidently, by the position of the smoke, camped
on the island instead of on the range, as we expected he would.
There exists a large river in the direction the
Professor has gone, namely, to the eastward, which
he has been endeavouring to cross. The one that
has meantime burst forth from the westward was
even larger. The lake was rising, and it was
evident that the two streams united together, and
flowing underneath the glaciers along the line of
their junction, issued in the form of Jones Eiver at
the, head of Icy Bay.
At 5.30 A.M. this morning we started for camp,
leaving large sheets of newspaper spread out to
attract attention, and a note on a stick saying that
i A PHENOMENON.
the 'absentee was to come on to the smoke of the
fires or to wait. On arriving at this camp the
bursting forth of a new torrent was confirmed. It
was also clear why they had not camped on the
range of hills. The new river had been dammed
up at some spot above, and was now running
I double tides," to make up for lost time. Just as
we got into camp, Woods, who had been exploring
it, reported a river " big enough to wash away the
city of London into the Atlantic Ocean." I could
hardly believe it, and went to see. Some alpine
lake had burst its bounds. The noise I had heard
through the dusk had been the roaring sound
caused by rush of many waters contending in their
downward course and wrestling as they fell with
boulders and blocks of ice.
It seemed as if the forces of nature had combined
to prevent our ever reaching St. Elias before our
food-supply gave out, not to mention the unfortunate loss of the Professor. Over the waterless
channel of yesterday were now surging icebergs
down the stream, mixed with roots and trunks of
trees. This accounted for the marks of sudden
rises and falls in the river-level lower down, and
made us fear lest our stores at the second camp
should be washed away.    Close by, on the banks, 96
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
an additional guiding-fire which Woods had made
had spread over the dry moss. Half a dozen large
trees were fairly alight, and sending up such a
volume of smoke as must have been visible for
fifty miles. The ground wherever it was sandy
was covered with tracks of bears, some of which
appeared as the impressions of monster paws.
Close by, over the river and looming through
the smoke, hung frowning cliffs of ice, the flank
of the glacier-face which was burying our island;
while, as if to add an additional horror to the scene,
a tree crashed down at that moment, overborne by
the weight of the advancing glacier. Eire, ice, and
water were contending at the same moment in their
powers of destruction, and within a distance of a
yard or two from each other.
Meantime the four Indians were despatched as
two search-parties, with orders to return if they
heard two shots fired. Before they had long been
gone one party fired two shots for some reason
unknown, and the other party of Indians, hearing
it, returned to camp, and were again sent out. At
6 p.m this evening, as the lieutenant and I were
walking through the timber, a voice cried, "Hello
there !" It was the lost one, pale and tired, but
safe.    He had failed to make his crossing to get off
i|yM THE WANDERER RETURNS.
97
the ice, and had then gone on eastward away from
camp with great determination. In the every g,
arriving at a lake, he thought a way was possible
by making a long detour. Shortly after, having
slightly sprained his leg, he was unable to make
the detour to see, but left his gun and instruments
on the ice, and walked westward to camp, hoping
to meet us coming, and not supposing it to be
possible that we had succeeded in finding a way
to the eastward. The cloudy pillar had been his
guide, but a great many fires had been set blazing,
and he had not yet located the one by which our
camp was set.
The Fifth Camp (near an Ice-fall at
the Foot of Mount St. Elias),
July 2$th, TO P.M.
The Indians who had been searching westward
reported finding a good easy way by following the
glacier in that direction. This was lucky, as no
other way was possible except a retreat. This
morning at noon we were once more fairly on the
road for St. Elias. The Professor remained behind
to connect the camps by simultaneous barometrical
readings, having one of the Indians left writh him.
All carried packs.     Only necessaries were taken,
G 98
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
including one of the small tents, and all the provisions that could be mustered, rope also and axes.
After the vexatious delays, the food could only last
us for from four to five days longer.
Keeping up the glacier, over troublesome mounds
and hillocks of ice, slightly crevassed and covered
several feet in depth with moraine and debris, in
two hours a flat plateau was reached where the ice
gave good walking. In front was another immense
glacier; a third stretched away on the left hand
side like a plain of ice as far as the eye could
reach; while our way opened out plainly by yet
another glacier which had its origin from the crags
of St. Elias himself.
We soon turned the corner of the range of
hills which had offered such an obstacle to us.
On the right lay two lakes of muddy water of
considerable extent, which were possibly the reservoirs which had become dammed up and had
then burst. For nearly two hours longer piles of
loose stones were crossed, and the centre of the
St. Elias south-west glacier was reached at 5.30
p.m.    This we named the Great Tyndall Glacier.
About the centre of it my boots gave out,
though I had chosen what I thought were the
strongest pair  for  the last  few marches.     Our
1  i AT THE BASE OF MOUNT ST. ELIAS.
99
Indians seemed vastly amused to see a small
box of tacks appear from one of their packs,
while we mended the refractory boots with the
tongue cut out of another boot.
At 8.30 p.m. we left the ice and camped on the
last bare slopes anywhere visible, putting up a
covey of ptarmigan from it. We were desirous of
pressing on and of camping on the ice within a
day's reach of the summit, but the Indians' moc-
Mount Cook (16,000 feet) from the Tyndall Glacier.
casins were again worn completely through, while
they would in any case from superstitious dread
have refused to proceed further.
If the morning turns out fine we intend to start
at three o'clock, and, to lose no time, have made
up our packs, including two days' provisions and a
suit of clothing to wear over the others at night;
some Esquimaux coats and hoods of reindeer
skin, thirty-five yards of rope, two ice-axes, one
alpenstock, one mercurial mountain barometer, one
( I 100
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
aneroid, one hypsometer, several compasses (one
prismatic), two thermometers, and one binocular.
The Indians go no farther, the final attack on
Mount St. Elias now devolves upon the white
men.
1 (    ioi    )
^HW| CHAPTEE Y. IHP0H
The Ascent of Mount St. Elias—Dangerous Crevasses—We are Roped
—The Ascent—I reach 6800 Feet over Snow-line—A Bear close
to Camp—A Description of the Mountain—The Return to Icy
Bay—Quicksands—Three Bears Killed—An Attempt to Launch
our Whaleboat through the Surf—We Swamp at Midnight.
The Fourth Camp, July 27th,
Sunset.
Yesterday we left the last camp at half-past four
in the morning for the final ascent. By keeping
to the centre of the glacier, which soon turns to
the west and runs from thence in a north-easterly
direction towards the summit, most of the larger
crevasses were avoided. At six it became necessary to rope the party together, as some of the
fissures, which now ran transversely, became larger
and were partially filled with snow. Joseph Woods
the lightest I placed in front, and the lieutenant
in the centre as being the heaviest, while I brought
up the rear. At this point the boy Frederick,
who helped to carry our packs so far, was sent
back, and the party consisted then of three.
The clouds had  hung  heavily, and now com- til
102
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
menced closing down. The glacier soon became
much cut up. Progress was very slow, and it
became necessary to bear away to the west. It
soon appeared advisable, as this was the first experience of the other two of any Alpine snow work
or of the use of rope and ice-axe, that we should
strike off towards one of the ridges on the west,
from which several large glaciers descended.    Up
HI   ill
Trying to ascend Mount St. Elias.
one of these we now worked in a north-westerly
direction. It was in a better condition than the
main ice-stream. But as it was now near midday
the snow bridges over the fissures were unsafe,
and some of the crevasses of great width. It was
especially vital to the success of the attempt that
the clouds should break and clear away at once.
Only three days' food remained in all, while as
mm THE ASCENT.
103
an additional difficulty, the lieutenant was still
seriously ill with fever, and I feared that a night
in the snow might even prove fatal to him.
At three the ice was quitted for a slope of
crumbling rock with large patches of snow, by
which a ridge rising at a steep angle was reached.
Schwatka was now in such an alarming condition from repeated chills, that his state made it
necessary to halt for an hour ; this delay I took
advantage of to make a sketch, before everything
was entirely obscured by the mist. Then I resumed the ascent with Woods. At a height of
6800 feet I sent him back to see after Schwatka,
and continued the ascent across a narrow snow-
field. The upper part of the ridge was swathed
in vapour, through which I pressed on till an
altitude was reached of almost 7500 feet,# as well
as could be computed at the time.
Progress was stopped at 7 p.m., as the ground
began to fall away to the west; had the weather
been clear, we might have picked' out a possible
way of ascent even yet, and might even have
seen part of the northern face on which no white
man's eye at any rate has yet rested.
Compelled  by   all   these   I circumstances   over
* Subsequently shown to be 7200 feet over sea-level. 104
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
which we had no control," we returned to camp,
which was at length reached at midnight. I
had ascended to a greater height over the summer
snow-level than is possible to accomplish in Europe,
the snow-level on Mount St. Elias being 400 feet
only above the sea-level owing to the heavy annual
snow-fall.
The day before, we had told the Indians that
our stock of provisions was very small, requesting
them to eat but litfte. We found they had left
Untouched the whole that remained, regaling them-
selves on wild roots and water. As we could remain no longer, a good meal and light packs were
the order of the day; especially for the Indians,
whose capability for either fasting or repletion is
very great. Before leaving, Woods, who had left
the hypsometer a short distance from camp, had
to return for it. As he was coming down the
bed of a stream he saw a large grey-coloured bear,
evidently one of the Elias grizzlies. The 50-calibre
Winchester had been left in the last camp. The
bear seemed to be eating the wild or "skunk'
cabbage, and took no notice whatever, and probably did not see Woods.
I subsequently went to look at the bear.    It
was a large brute, and I longed for some weapon A BEAR.
of offence. Woods also killed four ptarmigan with
an ice-axe. These birds evidently had broods, and
were most pugnacious, following like dogs, and
running round and round us with outspread wings.
They were welcome as a supply of meat. We
reached the camping-ground at seven this evening.
The Indians declared they felt the ground moving
and shaking as they lay in their I lean-to." If it
was not mere imagination, the lieutenant was
shivering and shaking from chills and fever with
almost sufficient violence to convey the sensation
of an earthquake to the acute senses of the Indians.
During the intervals of clear weather there have
been many opportunities of sketching and examining Mount Saint Elias, both with telescope and
binocular as well as with the naked eye, from our
various camps and stopping-places from different
points of view. A description would be of interest
in view of future attempts to climb the mountain.
Its height has been differently estimated by the
old navigators, Cook, Vancouver,' Tebenkoff, La
Perouse, Bering, and Belcher, and it is the only
mountain the real height of which has exceeded
the first estimates made of it. Mountains generally prove lower than they were originally believed
to  be, but the  latest  determination taken from io6
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
1
Yakatat and from the U.S. Coast Survey schooner,
Yukon, gives 19,500 and possibly 20,000 feet. It
certainly, from its massive shape, gives the impression of being less than this, notwithstanding
that its whole altitude is presented to the eye, from
its sharp summit down to the ocean at its foot.
The northern ridge of the pyramid, as. seen from
the same spot in profile, presented the same angle
of descent as the southern ridge—about forty-five
degrees. Something in the shape of Elias from
Yakatat reminds one of Piz Eoseg as seen from
the Eoseg Glaciej§y
The first features that fix the attention are the
outline as seen from Icy Bay, being a reproduction on
a slightly larger scale of Mount Fairweather ; next
that Elias forms a regular quadrilateral pyramid;
next the detached Circular crater-like basin nearly
ha|f-way up the central front; next the regularity
of three of the pyramidal side ridges and the
assumption that the fourth ridge must be equally
regular; and fifthly, the solitary and isolated situation of the Ice King—the terminating and crowning
illevation of his range, so close upon the sea—the
highest peak* in North America gazing out over the
* Lieutenant Allen asserts that Mount Wrangel, lying at the forks
of the Copper River, is even higher. NATURE OF THE GREAT MOUNTAIN.
107
widest ocean of the world. But though so like in
shape to Fairweather, which is 15,500 feet, there
exists a difference, in that the two ridges whicjk
appear like shoulders or wings on each side of the
two summits, in Elias are longer, while the eastern
shoulder is lower than the western. In Fairweather
both are of equal height. The four ar6tes or ridges
appear to run north, south, east, and west. The
north-west face of the mountain has never been
seen. The north-east face seemed from Yakatat to
consist of steep cliffs. The east ridge descends from
the summit as a snow ar6te with a gradually decreasing rapidity for about 4000 feet, forming one
of the before-mentioned shoulders; from which
point it falls in cliffs of steep black rock with
one break, a depression holding a small hanging
glacier.
Next comes the south-east face. The upper
triangular part consists of steep slopes of rock and
snow, and the lower part of perpendicular precipices.
The sharp contrast between the black and the white,
the rock and snow; and l|ie wTell-defined line of
demarcation, half way up, between snow-field and
precipice, forms a marked feature of this face.
Then the central or south |fdge of the pyramid
slopes at an angle of forty-five degrees from the
i I io8
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
summit to a depression lying seven or eight thousand feet below it, between the mountain and the
crater-basin. This crater, for such it appears,
though we found no volcanic traces on the moraine,
should be from four to five thousand feet in diameter. It lies in front of, and separate from, the
main volume of the mountain, and about midway
between base and mjjrmnit.    The encircling ridge
o o
encloses it on three Sides only, leaving the interior
open to view on the south-east. The inner cliffs
of pie crater descend too steeply to allow snow to
rest on them, but enclose four hanging glaciers.
On the outside of the Ibrater are five other glaciers,
and between them four ridges descending to the
main glacier at liie foot, which seem accessible half
way up—two of them even look easy—whence the
rim of the crater could be reached. From this
point it appears that the main snow-fields on the
souih-west face might bti attained.
On the south-west side, from the summit of Elias,
the snow and rock, very steep at first, stretches
down at a gradually lessening angle to a plateau of
neve, which winds down towards the crater, then
turns from behind it to the westward, being much
crevassed, and descends at an angle of about twenty
degrees to the main glacier, which we named the
Jy&i   "^w***** THE WEST FACE.
Great Tyndall Glacier, which now flows to the
south-east along the foot of the mountain, past the
base of the crater, where it widens and turns to the
south. At this point, where ne*ve and glacier
mingle, and which may be called the source of
the main southern Elias Glacier, some tributary
glaciers flow in and join from the westward; while
between this point and the crater are two fine
ice-falls. In the centre of the south-west face a
long regular and sharp ridge joins the main mass
of Elias, and divides the above-mentioned sloping
plateau of n&v6 into two.
This sharp ridge has also the effect of partly
hiding the western edge of the Elias pyramid,
which, as I could see from the highest point
reached, trended somewhat to the northward in
its lower part, and promised, on the whole, a not
impracticable way of ascent. Beaching the west
shoulder would be identical with reaching the
summit itself. While the sky in this direction
appeared to us generally more free from those
clouds and masses of fog which were so prevalent
just at the period when their absence was so important to us, and which caused us so much trouble
and annoyance. In this direction the "foothills" of Elias stood like islands in the enormous no
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
ill
expanse of glacier stretching prairie-like as far as
the eye could penetrate through the crystalline air
towards the country of the Atna or Copper Eiver;
and in the same direction was seen another lofty
range standing near the sea, and completely enshrouded and enveloped in the ice from which it
rose, and on which it seemed, so to speak, to rest
or float as on an ocean. But while the sky in the
north-west was more favourable, a constant canopy
of fog-bank hung over the sea at times, ending
abruptly with the land, and thus defining the coastline, especially Yakatat Bay.
Keturning now to the foot of the crater, the main
glacier at this point is approximately six miles in
width, and, as stated before, now flows southward
to the ocean, bounded by ranges of snowy hills
which contribute numerous streams of ice to swell
its volume. This we named the TyndaH Glacier,
and it was our pathwTay going to and returning
from our last camping place.
These boundary ranges to this glacier, which
divide it from the vast" ice-plains on the east and
west of it, cease at a distance of twenty miles from
Mount Elias. It then widens out and mingles with
the seas of ice and moraine, which cost us three
days to cross, and which form the shores of Icy and
ILv.wl&MJL, ,*
OCEANS OF ICE.
in
Yakatat Bays; while an immense ice-river, twenty
miles broad and of unknown length, comes in from
the westward (which we called the Great Guyot
Glacier), and where, as we could see from the greatest
elevation reached, were endless ice-fields. Towards
Yakatat also, a plain of glacier stretches for fifty
miles, which must comprise 700 square miles;
the seaward part consists of moraines, of course
underlaid with ice. The U.S. Coast Survey named
this Malaspina, as being apparently i a plateau bare
of vegetation," and a | buried glacier." It is, however, not exactly I bare of vegetation," for so slow
is the glacier's march, and so huge are the mounts * o
tains of moraine that border it, that large parts are
covered with thick bush, through which it is difficult to penetrate.
It would probably be below the mark to give
10,000 square miles as the area of the glaciers between Mount Elias and the Copper Eiver country,
and 8000 from Elias eastward, and southward to
Cross Sound, making 18,000 square miles of glaciers,
while merely those which border the shore must
comprise an area of about 2500 square miles of
rough but level fields of ice.
V ii2 SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
Table of Heights.
Everest (in the Himalayas), 29,002 feet (snow-line from
15,500 to 18,000 feet).
Aconcagua (in the Andes), 23,000 (snow-line, 12,780).
Chimborazo, 21,420.
A summit in the Hind||Kush, 20,593.
Mount St. Elias, r 9,000 to 20,000 (U.S. Coast Survey's
observations).
Cayembe, 19,625.
Kilimanjaro, approximately, 19,000.
Tolima, 18,314.
Kara Korum Pass (Himalayas), 18,200.
Elburz (Caucasus), 17,800.
Mount CooJc, 16,000.
Mount Brown (British Columbia), 16,000.
Mount Grill on, 15,900.
M<aunt Murchison (British Columbia), 15,789.
Mont Blanc, 15,784.
Mount Hooker (British Columbia), 15,700.
Mount Fairweather, 15,500.
Monte Rosa, 15,223.
Mount Tacoma (Oregon), 14,440.
Mount Adams (Washington Territory)
Mount Vancouver, 13,100.
The Gross Glockner (Tyrol), 12,956.
The Adler Pass, 12,461.
Mount Cook (New Zealand), 12,460.
Muley Hacen (Spain), 11,664.
Col du Geant, 11,426.
i3>258«
Mount La Perouse, 11,300.
Mount Hood (Oregon), 11,220.
Mount Maladetta - (Pyrenees), 11,168.
Iplhar Dagh (Balkans), 10,000.
Ruska Poyano (Carpathians), 99id§&
Monte Corno (Apennines), 9523.
Highest in Arabia, 8593. THE RETURN FROM ST. ELIAS. 113
Snse Hattan (Norway), 8102.
Kosciuska (Australia), 6500.
Alleghany Mountains (North Carolina), 6476.
Ben Nevis, 4406.
The Catskills, 4000.
Snowdon, 3590.
The Second Camp, July 2W1,
9 P.M.
Made the whole distance to-day from the fourth
camp. The water is twTo feet higher. We knew
the river would rise after the sudden appearance
of a torrent, where I had found nothing but bare
ground the day before. Though in peril, the cache
we had left was safe ; the Professor had been using
some of the provisions, and had evidently left only
that morning for the base camp, after having shifted
the things out of harm's way, for the ashes of his
camp fire were still warm.
lor Bay.    The Base Camp,
July 2gth, Sunset.
Leaving the second camp at seven this morning
we abandoned everything not absolutely needed.
We had to keep through thick wood away from the
river for the first mile, on account of the high state
of the water. The quicksands were covered wThere
we had crossed previously; but in another place
we waded breast-high in the river, which had a
H 114
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
shifting sandy bottom. Struck more quicksands
on the other side. Here the lieutenant sank up
to his middle, and was pulled out with the end pf
an alpenstock. He says he struck bed-rock. If
we had only known this before, how boldly we
should have allowed ourselves to sink, and with
what nonchalance crossed the very worst places.
The last river was also breast-high. Eeached this
camp at 3 p.m., and found that Dalton had killed
three bears on the beach near by. He informed
us that it had rained daily. The biggest bear had
sat up and looked at him, and had crawled a hundred yards after being shot. The Professor struck
a bad part of the river in crossing the quicksands,
and Ms Indian dropped and lost everything that
was not tied on.
Icy Bay.    The Base Camp,
July 30th, Midday.
All day yesterday we rested, watched the surf,
listened to the roar of the ocean, and wondered how
we were going 1|) get away. We determined to
try to get away by that night's tide. It was high
water at aflout 11.30 p.m. We packed the things,
leaving most of the remaining provisions, and other
things that were not indispensable. Towards sundown everything had been carried across the sand THE STRUGGLE WITH THE SURF.
dunes to the side of the whale-boat. Oars and
mast were made ready and everything prepared.
Breakers were filled and rollers laid, the very
names conveying unpleasant reminders. The
anchor had been thrown out as far as possible by
Woods wading out at five that afternoon at low
water, when the Indian canoes are said to -be able
to make a landing.
Still the length of cable we had to haul on to
get through the breakers looked miserably short
and insufficient, and threatened that we should be
unable to take quick advantage of the calm moment
on account of the difficulty of raising the anchor,
which, as well as the chain, sinks in a few minutes
to a great depth in the sand. How deep would it
sink in six hours ? The last twenty yards are of
chain, and this, as well as the anchor, was very
heavy, making it slow and hard work moving it. I
advised not using them. The pile of impedimenta
looked formidable, and were packed into the boat
to occupy the smallest space. As midnight approached we made ready. We took off our boots
and coats, and stood round the boat to hold firm
as the foam rushed by. It was icy cold to legs and
feet: and uniting our strength, we moved her down
upon the underwash of each succeeding wave. n6
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
i < i
We had suspected that the boat was too heavily
loaded for nine men to manage, and too low to
give her the necessary chance of rising over the
foaming breakers, comparatively small though they
were when contrasted with those of winter.
But most of the scientific instruments were the
private property of one of the members of the
party, and were valuable. We were therefore
unwilling to abandon them to their fate. To make
the situation more unpleasant it was nearly midnight and the darkness was increasing. Our legs
were numbed ; for the many glacial rivers and the
glaciers along the shore made the water bitterly
cold. The waves seemed getting larger. It was
spring-tide. Soon an enormous breaker came on
like a wall, and broke with a roar like thunder.
The foam rushed up the beach towards us. Now
was the time. We gasped for breath in the icy
water, and held firm to the boat till the wave began
to retreat again. '' All together now' some one
shouted, and exerting our full stfength we rushed
her down a few yards on the retiring flood.
We were now nearer to danger than ever. Some
water had enteredifthe boat over the gunwales
i&eady. The sand seemed to hold her sucked
down.     The  canfe had been tied behind  with DEFEATED.
117
twenty yards of rope. We had seen it rush past
us caught by the back sweep of the water, and next
moment become broken into small pieces which
floated uncomfortably round about, like an entanglement, till some one cut the rope adrift. We
were watching the next opportunity—a retreating
underwash followed by calm water for a moment.
The Indians strained their eyes seawards. Everything was obscured by the darkness, for it was past
midnight. We had calculated on its being lighter.
Now—now was the time, and a yell arose from the
whole party. Next minute we were completely
enveloped in foam, as we struggled to keep a footing, gasping from the cold. The rush of water was
terrific. It seemed like a nightmare enacted by
madmen. Wave succeeded wave till she was filled
and immovable. Everything became confusion.
Behind was a desert, in front the roaring sea in
which our effects were at the point of destruction,
while the surf breaking upon us chilled us through
and through. We were between the devil and the
deep sea, and the devil received the vote, for
" back" was now the cry. We were defeated and
cast once more upon an inhospitable shore. Four
held the boat, while the rest carried package after
package above the reach of the waves. nS
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
Shouts for assistance were heard as the waves
got the better of the four, and § shewed her broadside ;' till bailed out and dragged up she was
made fast for the preseat out of reach of the tide.
So ended our first attempt to leave Icy Bay. Here
we are still. We have ptill^ some provisions left,
and must make one last desperate effort if the surf
remains moderate. The matches were dry, and a
hot fire and coffee were cheering, as were also the
few blankets that remained dry.
The roaring of the surf kept every one awake till
the sun was high in the heavens, reminding us as
it did that calmer weather was.the only alternative
to capsizing or semi-starvation; while the brightest
star in the mental atmosphere is the return of the
man-of-war in a month.
To-day the weather is clear and cloudless, the
mirage along the shore rising and falling as the
wind dpfts the spray from the breaking|surf inland.
The beach is strewed with things laid out to dry;
luckily it is a fine warm day. (    H9   )
CHAPTEE VI.
A Fresh Attempt to Pass the Surf of Icy Bay—Abandonment of our
Possessions—Skirting the Shore—Crossing Yakatat Bay—We
camp by the Indian Village—Haggling with the Natives, or
"Chin-music''—Our Life at Yakatat—An Attempt to Recover
the Abandoned Property—The Kaiak Traders arrive in their
Schooner—Poisoning of the Indians with Arsenic—Murder of
George Holt—The Chief Mediciae-Man—I leave Yakatat—The
New York Times Expedition waits for the Man-o'-War—Becalmed
—Shooting Seals—A Sea-otter Hunt—Cape Yagtag—A Wild
Stern Coast-line — Another enormous Glacier — Life on the
Schooner—Cape Suckling—Cape Martin—Kaiak Island.
Yakatat Bay, August 2d, 1886.
Fresh preparations for departure were begun.
The anchor and chain were extracted from the
sand and laid thirty yards farther out at low
water, favoured by the spring-tide, by Woods
and Dalton, after a violent struggle with the
waves. It grew gradually calmer; our expectations rose. The scientific instruments were heavy;
must the Professor leave them? No, they must
be taken in the cause of science. If we were destined to swamp, we should swamp without them
as easily as with them.    The Indians were con- ill
120
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
suited; they would start at daybreak on the ebbing tide. It grew calmer still. If it should only
keep so for eight hours longer! At all hazards
we must break through the bounds of our prison-
house.
The surf broke in long, straight lines, every
portion simultaneously. The sound of it was
louder, but the sea in reality calmer. Each roller
was clearly defined from each succeeding one.
We could pick out the moment for the last rush
with certainty. It was 7 o'clock in the evening.
We lay down, and each one feigned sleep, but no
one slept. We were face to face with a danger,
but we talked of other things. The Indians
watched the sea by turns all night, and roused
Dalton to prepare breakfast as the first light of
morning lit the sky behind the vast ranges of
alps. Almost everything was abandoned this
time.    The boat was therefore nearly empty.
The air was thick with sea fog, but the sea was
still in good condition. It grew lighter and lighter.
Everything is ready, and away we go down the
beach. Now she touches the wash. We haul in
the slack of the anchor rope and bide our time.
Determination is imprinted on every face. The
undemonstrative  Indians  get really excited  and
V   I THE VICTORY.
121
show it. We leave it to them to give the word.
The glaciers make the sea almost icy cold, and we
shudder as each surge breaks and rushes under us.
The moment arrives when we see a calm stretch.
" All together ! I and she moves seawTard. Now she
floats. Pull on the anchor rope for life or death.
" Jump in, boys !' " Eow, for God's sake, row !'
The chain is caughtitn the sand and refuses to come
up. Some one cuts the rope. All is confusion.
The oars are entangled and refuse to enter the
rowlocks. I Eow, for God's sake, row !' At last
I get one in, and a wave strikes it out again. (I
found afterwards this rowlock was bent.) She
surges to and fro. Nothing at this moment could
take my attention from the rowlock, though it
were to rain " chained thunderbolts and hail of
iron globes." I wrestle with my oar, and everything beside passes unheeded except the cry dinning
in one's ears, | Eow, for God's sake, row!" A
small wave passes under her and breaks just under
the keel; she turns broadside. Has no one got an
oar out ? Ten yards more and we shall be safe.
I seize another oar; some one is sitting upon it.
I try another, and the stay catches. At last one
oar is got to work; then another. Every one shouts
at once.    Never was seen such confusion, or heard 122
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
such pandemonium. Hades must have broken
loose. The importance of the next few seconds is
immense. At last she moves—faster and faster—
no heavy sea yet. We are safe. No! look out—
yes, safe at last. An immense roller arrives. She
rises to it, and it passes ..under and breaks just
beyond us. The shore recedes. We are soaked
through and through, but safe. We are exhausted,
and can afford to rest. We bail the boat, and
change into dry thing^J which we have taken care
to place in rubber bags. The fog lifts. Never did
Mount Si. Elias look so grand, so magnificent.
Our deserted tent stands lonely on the shore. It
shows white againifc the dark narrow belt of forest,
which in its turn shows up blackly against the
glittering sea of glaciers beyond.
We have the best boat from the man-of-war.
We can set no sail, for not a breath moves the
glassy surface of the Pacific, yet we can row her
at a rate of ffar knots. We taste the water and
find it fresh.
We pass along the coast, keeping well clear of
the line of breakers. In a few hours we reach
Point ,Sitkagi, the thin line of swamp and
timber ends, and we skirt mile after mile of
brown-looking ice-cliffs where the Great Agassiz
o o
I SKIRTING THE SHORE.
12
Glacier reaches the sea. Piles of moraine fbbble
and stones lies on its upper surface; streams of
water issue from its cracks and fissures and flow
down its face into the ocean.
At midday we are abreast of the point called
Manby by the coast survey; it only remains to
cross the Bay of Yakatat, a distance of twenty
miles, and about sixty from the starting-point.
At Point Manby some belts of timber fringe
the coast line, which continue for ten miles up the
bay, when the ice-cliffs recommence. In front of
the timber stretches the same long straight line
of sand, backed by a ridge of gravel and stones
which allow only the tree tops to be seen beyond,
and on which the Pacific surf breaks ceaselessly—
clearly a shore not intended for man to land upon.
A breeze springs up, and the sail is hoisted.
Quantities of seal "bob up serenely' all round,
as many as fifteen glistening black heads at once,
and disappear again in the thick white water.
They are the common hair-seals, and this is an
Indian seal-hunting ground.
Ocean Cape and Cape Phipps soon rise into
view. Each fir-tree becomes defined, and the
coast line presents a serrated edge. The Indian
village comes in sight.    The chief hoists his flag
I 124
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
on the flag-pole, and the natives crowd on the
roofs of the houses. As we draw up on the
beach, crowds of Yakatat Indians, men, women,
and naked children, surround us. They have
returned, since we left, from seal-hunting. Most
of them have their faces pamted black or red, and
stare intently and silently without one of them
offering to help us.
We pitch camp on the sandbank, now denuded
of strawberries by the newly-arrived inhabitants,
fetching our second large tent and boxes from the
chief's house, where they have been stored. We
find the chief seated on a magnificent bear robe
by the side of his wife and daughter, and wearing
his uniform and the U.S.S. Pinta ^riband. The
crowd fills the house and still pours in by the
small circular opening called a door. The smoke
ascends through a hole in the roof, across which
are hung strings of dried salmon and salmon-
trout.
After much talk, we tell the chief in reply that
though we have not actually reached the summit
of the big mountain, we have ascended higher
above the snow-line than any other living men.
ill II YAKATAT AGAIN.
125
Yakatat Bay, August 3d.
The chief visited us yesterday in camp at supper,
and ate some pilot bread and bacon. Eows of
brown naked children, with black beady eyes, sit
round four deep and watch every operation with
an intense and speechless interest.
The bedding having been left at Icy Bay, we
have to use a supply of new blankets we stored
here. This morning our Indians were paid in
trading material, which they chose for themselves
out of the supply brought.
Yakatat Bay, August $th, 1886.
The last two days have been consumed in bargaining with the Indians in trading material for
curios (such as masks and arrows, spoons of wild
sheep and goat horns, charms, carved bones, and
baskets woven out of roots and grass), but in a
manner tedious and trying to the patience. Besides
salmon, and occasionally a small halibut, the Indian
squaws have been daily bringing clams, cockles,
crabs, and baskets of strawberries, salmon-berries,
and blueberrfes. The Alaskan climate produces
a fine appetite, and with Dalton, Woods, and
Frederick,   the   cooking   is   a   marvel.     One   is I-
!|
lit*
126
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
liable to eat too much, and disinclined in consequence to do anything but lie in the tent.
All the same, the Professor' seems not to be
affected in that way, since he has set up an
observatory in a perforated deal box, screwed to
a stump, with wind gauges, barometers, thermometers, and other instruments.
The Indians do not venture near, for they consider it must be " big medicine."
The Professor.
I made a sketch in oils yesterday of the chief's
daughter. Several men were asked first to sit, and
all showed some reluctance, so I was surprised to
find the chief willing to allow his daughter to do
o o
so. She is about fifteen years of age, and came
escorted by her husband and father-in-law, as well
as by the chief and his wife. I had to make brushes
out of bits of rope, the others being at Icy Bay.    I THE CHIEF'S DAUGHTER.
127
kept her sitting an hour, and gave her a looking-
glass.
Eight Indians have consented to go to Icy Bay
in large canoes and endeavour to recover the
things left there, saying they might have long to
wait for an opportunity of launching the canoes to
return. They start immediately. One of them,
who owns a partly ruined hut there, is bold
looking, with an honest and trustworthy as well
as picturesque appearar^ee. He is one of the
only twro men who hunt bears in this neighbourhood ; the other is one of our Indians, | the
hunter," as we called him. Some may remain the
whole winter, for there are plenty of seals there,
as we discovered.
Yesterday the trader's schooner, of about twenty
tons burden, arrived from Kaiak Island, and is now
lying at anchor. They have offered to take the whole
party to their store at Kaiak, whence we can reach
Nuchuk in canoes, where a schooner belonging to
the Alaska Commercial Company will call in September. By this we could reach Kodiak, and
thence San Francisco, by the steamer St. Paul.
I have accepted their offer. The others prefer to
remain at Yakatat until the man-of-war arrives to
take them back to Sitka.    To-day we had an exhi- 128
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
bition of fireworks and athletics.    The best man
among the Indians wrestled with Dalton.
Yakatat Bay, August gth.
On the evening of the 6th a great beating
of drums and sticks, which continued nearly all
night, was heard in the village. The noise seemed
to issue from the last house. It was broken at
||mes by the howling of the wolf-like dogs which
swarm, and yell in chorus like coyotes, generally
clustering together for the purpose on some promontory or lonely and distant spot.
We sallied out in a body to see what was doing.
The interior of the house was lit up by the firelight.
The shawaan was seated, naked to the waist, performing incantations and machinations over a sick
child, though the child itsflf was nowhere visible.
His long hair, always left uncut, was streaming
behind Mm. He was shaking his charms, throwing
his body into contortions, uttering shrill cries,
hissing and extending his arms, groaning and
breathing through his clenched teeth, ierking him-
O O 'JO
self meantime in convulsive starts in cadence to
the music. Seated round the fire, a dozen Yakatat
Indians were beating drums and pieces of wood
together, keeping time to the jerks of the shawaan's TROUBLE WITH THE INDIANS.
129
SSSSSg".
head and body. . This old medicine-man is quite
blind, having been deprived of his sight in a fight
with another medicine-man.
Next morning some Yakatat women came to
the tent ostensibly to trade some curios. Their
real object was different. They had brought
with them one of our baking-powder tins, which
contained a white powder, and which they thought
must be 1 no good,"
for all the Indians
who had eaten of
bread baked with
this powder were
now lying ill; some
of them being Sit-
kans, besides our
guide, Bear Hunter,
and his family.
The Professor recognised the powder, which was
pure arsenic. I While at Icy Bay, Dalton had taken
some of the drug (used for preserving objects of
natural history) to poison a bait for foxes half a mile
from camp at the head of the lagoon, and had carelessly utilised a baking-powder tin for carrying the
poisonous mineral. One of the Indians had found
the tin near the line of march; it was promptly taken
I
m
\
A Yakatat Medicine-Man. 130
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
from him by the Professor and given to Dalton to
be destroyed. He had, however, merely hidden it.
The same Indian, with his thievish propensities, had
sought it out again, concealing it this time in
another Indian's bundle, who had brought it with
him to Yakatat (to cause misery, illness, and subsequently death to three persons). To pick up and
make use of articles discarded or thrown away as
useless is an unconquerable habit with the Alaskan
Indian.
Mr. Schwatka, in his western experiences on the
plains, has known instances where the pernicious
stuff has been the cause of deaths amongst a hunting
o o
party by a precisely similar mistake.
As the medicine chest was among the things at
o o
Icy Bay, nothing could be done but to recommend
hot salt water immediately as an emetic. The
Professor endeavoured to superintend, but was
not allowed even to use one of their kettles for
fomentations J||r fear of contamination with the
sick.
The morning wore on, and no Indians came to
Jjtade. At lengtl Frederick brought word that a
child was dead, and that one of the Indians and his
wife, who had refused the eme1|c, were seriously
ill, bu| that all who had taken it were recovering. MURDER OF HOLT.
131
At intervals a distant drumming and yelling from
the interior of the houses told us that the sha-
waan was busy at his work. The chief came and
went, and the deplorable conduct of the Indian,
among those now at Icy Bay, was fully explained
to him.
Meanwhile wTe all visited the Indian houses to
see if anything further could be done, and sent to
inform the traders of the state of affairs. They
soon came across in their 1 dory." Calms and
contrary winds had given them a long passage
from Kaiak. The only item of news they could
give us was of the murder by an Indian of George
Holt, the storekeeper at the Company's store at the
Knik Eiver in Cook's Inlet. News had been sent
of the occurrence to San Francisco, and it was
hoped that the Government would take the necessary steps for the capture of the murderer. Having
been turned out of the store by Holt for misbehaviour, he had laid in wait for him and shot him
in the back next day. This post on the Knik
Eiver has usually been abandoned during the
summer months for an island in the estuary on
accQunt of the mosquitoes. The Indians arrive to
trade from the interior mostly during winter. 132
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
ml
On Board the Schooner Three Brothers,
August gth, Sunset.
This morning we were up early and saw a thick
column of smoke rising from the village. They
were cremating the body of the child. The usual
sounds of drumming were issuing from the chief's
o o
house, where the sick people are lying. Entering
the house, we found the blind shawaan again
at his tricks. He was squatting by the side of
our Indian, who was evidently better, for he was
vomiting, having at length taken the emetic. The
shawaan was neglecting the wife, and devoting his
magic arts excluiavely to the husband.
Sitting down, I commenced to sketch the sight-
less savage, who, of course, was unaware that I
was drawing him. The chief kept telling me not
to be afraid, for he was blind. Perhaps he thought
as I had sketched his daughter that if! would prevent any ill effects if I did the same to the shawaan.
Presently he stripped himself]pand opening his box
of charms, took out a wocpen figure of a crane with
a frog clinging to its back, and a bunch of sea-
otter's teeth and carved walrus tusks. ;jfhe latter
he placed on the naked stomach of the dying man.
Meantime the  drums  and  sticks kept up the THE MEDICINE-MAN AT WORK.
133
monotonous noise, and the heat and stench were
increased by the fire. The shawaan grew more
excited. His contortions and jerks grew more and
more active. His favourite attitude seemed to be
with the right arm drawn up, and hand half-
clenched under the ear, the left arm extended,
squatting in Eastern fashion, the body crouched
and greasy with oil and the heat.
At a sign his hair was uncoiled and unknotted
by the assistant-magician. Its length was at least
five feet, but might possibly have been added to
artificially. At times in his leaps and jerks the
ends came perilously near the fire. He seemed
aware of this, for he occasionally drew them in.
Every few minutes, too, white eagles' down was held
between finger and thumb by the assistant, and
blown over his head and shoulders, to which it
adhered, giving hair and skin a hoary and ancient
look, or as though he was covered with freshly fallen
snow-flakes. The dying man paid but little regard
to him, and before many hours had elapsed both he
and his wife had passed away.
Disgusted by the sight, and sickened by the
stench, I sought the air, and saw a flag flying from
the schooner's mainmast—a sign to come on board,
for there was a fair wind.    The sails were hoisted 134
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
II
as an additional sign, in case the flag should have
passed unnoticed. After a hurried leave-taking I
rowed on board, only to find the breeze dying out.
It rose again, though faintly; so the anchor was
weighed, and she put to sea. Some hours later, as
she lay idle and becalmed barely two miles from
land, the sails flapping as she rose and fell, a canoe
shot out from the promontory containing the chief
and his wife. They had come to beg! As the little
schooner lay becalmed they thought it a good op-
portunity to do so, unobserved by the rest of the
tribe.
On Board the Schooner TJiree Brothers ofKodiak,
August 10th, Mid-day.
We are becalmed off Icy Bay, having made
small progress, with only 1 light airs;' but the
breeze, such as it is, is now right aft.
August nth.
We were favoured by a light but fair breeze
yesterday afternoon, and with the assistance of
Hie current, which sets continually to the westward, we have made forty miles. At the same
Mme a thick black cloud hung over the sea, some
of the rain from which reached us. There was
also a flash of; lightning and some thunder—very WE HUNT A SEA-OTTER.
135
rare phenomena in these parts, and the first the
Carlsens had heard—but the sky was perfectly clear
to the eastward. Seals were numerous, and the
steersman, either William or Nils, who took it in
turns, kept firing as we went along. Seal meat
is quite palatable, though seal blubber is exceedingly fishy to the taste. But at 3 p.m. a sea-otter
made his appearance, and all our rifles were got
out and several shots fired, but at a long range, and
without any result.
At 6 p.m. we were all in the cabin when another
alarm was given by the steersman. Another sea-
otter had been seen close alongside. It was raining hard, but a long fusillade commenced. Twice
it gave a fair opportunity, coming to the surface
to breathe close to the schooner. Some bullets
had struck the sea close by the animal, which
appeared to have been wounded, as its movements
were slow and uncertain. The schooner was put
about four or five times as the otter dodged and
came up now in front and now on the right or
left. Each time the creature rose some one fired,
to make it dive and so exhaust it, for the sea-otter
is a warm-blooded animal, and must come to the
surface every few minutes to breathe.
After a time it remained floating three hundred 136
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
yards astern (a seal shows only its head, or head
and flipper, but a seajfotter shows its whole length),
and no further firftig would make the animal dive,
urrless the bullets were exceedingly close. It was
difficult to make even fair shooting on account of
the motion of the vessel, wj|le the wind having
dropped, it was impossible to ^llow up the chase
by putting about.
As there seemed no promise of the breeze getting
up again, the men launched the " dory |j to continue
the pursuit, leaving me to manage the schooner
alone, and to signal to them from the deck in
which direction to row, the vSw thence being
more extensive than from the | dory."
By this time the sea-otter had recovered his
breath, and his next appearance was so distant
that the chase was given up. While it lasted it
was exciting, and an immense number of cartridges
wTere consumed.
We were now opposite a pj§int on the coast
where a party of Indians which had been fitted
out by the traders wjjjh boats and guns had been
landed to hunt sea-otters. This was ,w|iere the
glacier which projects and forms the west side of
Icy Bay' terminals, after sweeping or curving
round to the west, at the  foot of a low range
' CD ICY CAPE.
J37
of hills. The ridges of these hills are covered
with glacier ice, which pours down the ravines
and sides in a series of frozen cascades.
The lancling is said to be partially protected by
a low sand ridge or point which exists. The
traders had always known this landing by the
name of Icy Bay landing. As we passed by the
slight indentation forming the true Icy Bay of
the charts, twenty miles back, I had pointed out
to them our deserted tent, just visible with the
naked eye, as we wTere four or five miles off shore.
It stood out like a shining, square, white speck
upon that grand and awful coast in relief against
the narrow belt of forest.
Meanwhile nothing was seen of the traders'
hunting party who were to have come out to us
to be taken back to Kaiak in the schooner. They
must have heard the firing, and had not the surf
prevented them, would have put off. As the swell
was not formidable, it wTas evident they had
already returned. From the east cape of Icy Bay,
called Icy Cape, where the glacier projects farthest
into the sea, to this point, a distance of five or six
miles, the ice presents a high serrated wall to the
ocean, and differs from the other ice fronts which
fringe the coast, and which are of a dirty drab
1
i
1 138
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
Iff
colour, from the moraines and sand heaps superimposed upon them, in that here the ice is a pure
greenish-white, and falls abruptly in peaked and
jointed terraces. The front of the glacier is a cliff
which |j beetles o'er his base into the sea," which
thunders below. It is the sea front of the Great
Guyot Glacier, washed and broken by the Pacific
surge.
Towards sunset we lay rising and falling slowly
in the long waves off fjbhe Cape Yagtag of the charts,
where a reef of rocks is said by the Indians to
act as a slight protection to the beach. From
here westward " the foot-pills," as it were, of Elias
fringe the coast line, timbered at the lower levels
with firs. Their feet are bathed in a stratum of
sea-mist rising ^Erom the Pacific surf, which bursts
and dies without cessation; and from the long
booming line of foam rises for ever its ghost, in
the shape of spray and vapour, which rolls away
like smoke, and half conceals the trees in a veil of
rainbow colours, and hangs over the ice like a cold
white pall.
All along the sides and summits of these hills, in
every hollow and in every possible and impossible
position', lie glaciers of all jjjjizes, connected and
disjointed! large and small.    Here and there lie
Vi ANOTHER ENORMOUS GLACIER.
139
patches of snow and broad fields of n&vL Wherever the gravelly or sedimentary deposits of wlfich
the mountains are composed protrude through the
ice or snow, they are of a warm red-bro^n colour.
As we He on the glassy and heaving surface, I can
just see the summit of St. Elias over a dip in the
range. This dip is filled up by a glacier which
seems to come rushing and pouring down the valley
to the sea like a Niagara of ice. From here the
higher slopes of Elias look harmlessly easy. The
western ridge appears to fall away gently to the
north, and to offer a practicable way of ascending
the mountain.
I had understood that j§rith Icy Cape the last ice
along the coast line was left behind. But looming
twenty miles or so to the westward appears anothe4>
vast ice-plain, to which I ventured to give a name,*
and which sweeps down and opens fan-like on the
ocean, where the coast range of "foot-hills" comes
to an end. It is evidently the opening or outlet of
the vast glacier-desert or ice-lake which we saw from
the slopes of Mount St. Elias, lying to the northwest of that mountain. Its birthplace is an icy
range that forms an enlarged continuation of the
great western ridge of Elias.    It is not marked or
* Proceedings of the Royal Geographical Society, May 18S7. 140
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA
1
I It
*S
mentioned by the early navigators, all of whom
mistook the true nature of these stupendous
glacjers, La Perouse describing them as " snow
lying upon a barren soil," and | a plain totally
destitute of verdure."
A blue range of hills on the coast beyond is
Cape Suckling, just off which, but not yet visible,
lies Kaiak Island, the traders' post, and their
present home.
Occasionally the black shining head of a seal
offered a difficult mark, and a shot was fired at it.
Then a line was baited with a piece of salt salmon
and let down for a chance halibut.
The three men each have a share in the schooner.
Having a good understanding with the Alaska
Commercial Company, they have set up a store at
Yakatat Bay, and another at Kaiak, but the natives
are not great fur-hunters at these places, and their
most profitable trips are made on behalf of the
Company. One of ti|em cooks meals with the
small stove in the cabin, and is exempted in consequence from night-watches—tea and coffee, salt
(-$||mon, bread and butter, and " nfjisli," being the
usual fare, varied with | Cape Horn fry," or a can
of California honey. BECALMED.
141
Three Miles from Kaiak Island,
August 13th, 10 a.m.
Yesterday a smart south-west breeze sprung up
at mid-day, and continued all the afternoon, blowing
very fresh by evening, and aggravating the Pacific
swell. It was dead ahead, but better than a calm.
We tacked against it steadily. On the south tack
the schooner pitched a good deal, but we stood to
sea till land was ten miles distant. But once
again, at 7 p.m., it fell calm, so the "dory' was
launched to tow, while the two long sweeps were
The St. Elias Alps, the third highest range in the world, viewed from
the westward.
used from the deck. When all hands turned in,
after three hours' work, she hardly seemed to have
advanced much.
Kaiak was still twenty-five miles distant. By
sunrise we had made five miles. After breakfast
the sweeps were got out, and with the help of light
airs we made considerable way again. Cape Suckling was now full in view, and appeared to consist
of two rocky wooded points running out into the
sea and terminating in red cliffs. Behind them a
range of hills, with bare, bright-green summits, runs
i 142
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
back ten or twelve miles. On each side lie low land,
sand-bars, lagoons, and forest flats. This strip of
verdant land, like an oasis in the wilderness, is cut
off and imprisoned on the inland side by the interminable plains of glaciers that my eye was now so
familiar with—p||rt of the white plains that descend
from the before-mentioned snow range I had seen
from the slopes of Mount St. Elias from a height
of 7000 feet, now stretched out full in view,
dazzling, spotless, and immense.    Further to the
Cape St. Elias
It  11
west lay Cape Martin, the extremity of a range
slightly higher than that of Cape Suckling, and
apparently not so hemmed in and closely pressed
|jpon from behind by the seas of ice, which here
retire farther inland.
The sun was oppressive. We were rolling lazily
in the swell, and close to the Sea-Otter Rocks,
wBSre nets are laid during the winter for the
otters by the traders. Kaiak Ipand runs seaward
a length of twenty miles : it is flat and thickly
forested.    At the south end Cape St. Elias, a vast CAPE ST. ELIAS.
143
rock apparently 2000 feet high, with rounded
outline, rises suddenly, isolated, and with precipitous sides white and shining—a wonderful and
unmistakable landmark, with a cloud generally
reposing on its top.
Cape St. Elias was named and described by
Cook and the early Russian navigators and fur-
hunters. The former named the island after Dr.
Kaye, and its name seems to have degenerated into
Kayak or Kaiak. He also left a bottle with some
coins on a wooded eminence not far from the shore,
on the east side of the island. 144
CHAPTER VII.
Arrival at Kaiak—I become a Naval Officer—Hauling in Dog-Fish
—The Hunter's Home and the Indian Village—The Tame
Bear—Two Norwegians on Cape Suckling—How the Bear came
for them—The Habits of the Sea-Otter—Visiting the Indian
Hovels—I become an Admiral, and the Chief is presented to
me—The Weather changes.
Kaiak Island, August 14th
(near the Copper River).
The little schooner seemed in no hurry to be laid
up for the winter, for thql was to be her fate.
Though within a couple of miles of Kaiak we still
lay becalmed or nearly so, till at mid-day a boat
shot out from the point, behind which the small
" store' is situated, containing the three other
white inhabitants, all Scandinavians. One of
them was Nils' wife, a stout, pleasant, homely,
Swedish woman. I soon made their acquaintance,
or rather was introduced to them by Nils Andersen. Had I some kind of ujfifbrm I could wear ?
I was to parade as an officer from a man-of-war
—the one thing tpiat kdfps the Indf|ns in awe.
Among the few trade aifcicles calculated to take THE SWEDISH TRADERS.
145
the  Indians'  fancy  that  remained  was   a   gold-
braided cap and military
coat with brass buttons,
exactly suitable, and fitting
to a nicety.
We were telling the In-
dians," said Olaf, who was
one of the three in the boat,
" that the war-ship was coming, and would punish them
if they didn't behave themselves.    They wanted their
K 146
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
big canoe to go to Oodiak, but they will let us
have it now to take us to Nuchuk. The bucks left
this morning for a four days' hunting-trip. The
squaws may clear out when they see the cap with
the gold band, and are told that you come from
the big war-ihip."
At the point the tide was running strongly, and
the anchor had to be dropped somewhat suddenly.
While the Swedes were conveying the things ashore,
I procured a large hook from the cabin, baited
it with a piece of salt salmon, tied on a bit of iron
as a sinker, attached a line, and allowed it to sink
till it touched bottom. My dream was to engage
in a struggle with an enormous 400 lb. Alaskan
halibut, to wrestle with the great chavicha or the
king salmon, or to shoot the emperor goose and the
sea-lion. I knew there would be no fresh fish ashore,
for the Alaskan will never trouble to angle for fresh
cod while salted salmon remains in his fish barrel,
nor do the traders eat it until winter, when nothing
else can be had. As soon as the weight touched
bottom, at three fathoms, there came a pull. Hauling |n I found the hook broken. A new hook and
another bite, and I hauled in a large dog-fish; and
without changing the bait, another. Then three
more of these jI terrors of the ocean f in as many KAIAK.
147
minutes.    Clearly dog-fish swarm, and my halibut
still remains an experience for the next fine day.
Coming ashore, I found the natives evidently not
deeply impressed by the presence in their midst of
a naval officer ; the two decrepit men, the slovenly
squaws, and half naked children did not " clear
out," but merely pointed and whispered.
Kaiak.
The settlement of Kaiak is picturesquely situated
behind cliffs, facing the mainland, sheltered by the
two islands Kaiak and Mitchell. A few Indian,
hovels, for they are nothing else,|are built above
high-water mark, and a stairway behind leads to
two log houses and the store.    A house thatched 148
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
with bark contains the nets and canoes. A whale-
boat and two smaller boats lie hauled up on the
beach, papited blue—one light and strong, built in
Japan, and subsequently brought over by a schooner
to Belkoffsky, one of the most important of the
Alaskan settlements of the sea-otter hunters. The
store is dark, small, but well supplied. The living-
house is so confined that two large bear robes cover
half of the entire floor—one of them black, the other
a tawny grey, reminding one of the Polar species.
Small and few as are the houses of this temporary
summer settlement—for the Indians spend the
winter on the mainland—the dogs in number and
wolfishness " discount' the Yakatat Indian dogs.
When not "vexing the doleful ear of night* by
concerted howlings together, one or two would
surely be paying the moon." In endeavouring
to kill and devour any one of their number who is
wounded or off his guard, they equal the celebrated
dogs of Constantinople. This canine onslaught
upon the weak oj8$- of their number occurs constantly, until (for the dogs have a certain value
for hunting purposes) the squaws in a slow and
■deliberate manner toss large stones which fall with
a, dull thmd among the mass of struggling dogs,
"both mongrel, puppy, whelp, and hound, and curs
11 THE INDIAN DOGS.
149
of low degree." But though the foul canine mob
thus engages in domestic quarrels and internal
dissensions, they band together, acting on the
rule of " union is strength," and " bunch up," to
use a western phrase, when in self-protection the
traders hie on their four large dogs against them.
At other times the squaws and children engage
in an occupation favourite with monkeys, and
search each other's hair for a small insect not
unknown to civilisation.
Kaiak Island, August 16th.
Opposite the store a young bear occupies a box
nailed halfway up a tree. His chief enemy is a
spotted dog, which is in the habit of pulling him
out of his box by Ijts rope, till he succumbs and
falls to earth, bristling with teeth and claws, unless, however, he has been enabled to obtain " purchase ' round a b|anch. But the most agonising
moment is when, after a rest, the young bear
endeavours to regain the perch from which he has
been so rudely pulled. He struggles frantically
up the trunk, his claws reach within an inch of
the edge of his box, when the spotted dog, springing up an incredible height, brings Bruin by his
hind pawTs again to earth.    One of the few errors
II *5°
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA
Mr. Ivan Petroff has made in his description of
Alaska (tenth U.S. Census) is the statement that
black bears are found on Kaiak Island. This one
broke loose last week, and is the solitary representative of his species here.
The only four-footed animals found on Kaiak
are foxes, but these are variously coloured as usual,
black, grey, grizzled, and red.
Last night we had some music. 'A " fair wind'
had got up and howled without. An oil lamp lit
up the rough hewn beams, the rude furniture
strewed with i|Lre skins, nets, guns, and implements,
and the healthy bearded faces of the Scandinavian
ijljunters, now English-speaking American citizens.
Flute, violin and guitar, with a song appropriately
named % The Old Log Cabin," and I Coming up
the Golden Stairs." This morning, while the men
were away laying up the schooner, I was startled
by shouts, and looking out saw Mrs. Nils running
to the sea with a bucket. The house had been set
on fire by the^ stove pipe, but was put out after a
scare.
Kaiak Island, August iyth.
Two other  Scandinavians arrived last  month.
They were Norwegians this time, and have built a
little log cabin on Point Suckling just opposite.
1
&* THE WOUNDED BEAR.
151
But they have made a mistake, for the surf renders
the landing difficult. They are here now, and
cannot get back; and when they succeed in doing
so, they may not be able to get off again for weeks.
Near them lie large lagoons which fill and empty
with the tide, and beyond the lagoons the plains of
ice. A week ago one of them shot a sea-otter from
the rocks and swam out to bring it ashore, but was
obliged to abandon it to save himself from being
sucked down by the surf. They have done no
I hunting" yet, having been engaged in building
their winter quarters. Some two weeks ago they
saw a bear three hundred yards away, and both
opened on him with 45 cal. Winchesters. Bruin
instantly turned and came for them like an express
train. By the time the seventh shot was fired,
which fortunately proved fatal, the brute was but
thirty yards distant. These two Norwegians, like
the rest, have succeeded in almost completely
throwing off their nationality, even in the spelling
of their names. They never speak even to each
other in their native tongue, always in English—
I beg pardon, in American. Even Mrs. Nils makes
heroic struggles. I thought at first it was from a
sense of politeness to myself; but no, they have
become citizens of the Great Republic, and together 152
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
with all allegiance to Oscar II. they must discard
their native language.
It has rained incessantly, and the one subject
that comes uppermost is sea-otters. Nils spoke
about them as follows :—
We look at our nets every day the weather will
allow us during the winter. Sometimes it is too
rough to row the whale boat, and we have to
sail her. The skin of an otter taken in the
otter nets will last without spoiling from three
to five days, if we can't get out to the rocks
sooner. After that the sea-worms get at them,
and drill holes in them. If the worms did not
get at them they would last seven or eight days,
for the sea is cold in winter, and helps to keep
them fresh. There is a saying that you cannot
spoil a sea-otter's skin, do what you will with it.
The dead and rotting ones thrown up by the sea
can be patched together. Holes in the skin matter
nothing—they can be filled up.. When two otters
get caught in the same net, if they can reach each
other they always fight. We have found two dead
otters together, and the mouth, nose, and whole
face of one of them bitten away. The animal has
terrible teeth. One can't approach an otter in the
nets till it has been knocked on the head.    They
111 M
NETTING SEA-OTTERS.
153
are so strong that they frequently carry nets, leads
and all, to the surface of the water with them, to
breathe ; but if two are caught, one impedes the
other, and both die from drowning if not from
fighting. The nets leave no mark on the skin;
they are generally taken with one or both paws
through the meshes.
I have taken a chavicha or king salmon and a
sea-otter out of the same net. On one memorable
occasion we took seven otters out of one net and
four out of another. One man near Belkoffsky took
twenty-four out of one net one night after a gale.
The Indians usually only hunt land fur in winter,
not sea-otters, for the sea is too rough for canoes.
They always use bows and arrows for sea-otters,
and will only use a gun when they are close and
cannot miss. They have an idea that guns frighten
away the otters ; or perhaps loading takes too much
time, for they use muzzle-loaders. In winter the
otters are driven by the gales to take refuge near
shore, in lee of the islands; but iii summer they
can only be found out at sea.
My brother and my wife's brother are coming
out this winter, and will build a house on that
point of Little Kaiak you see just opposite.
They are not sailors, so I had no use for them this 154
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
■
summer. This winter I shall lend them nets and
let them try what they can make of it. They will
work the nets at some rocks beyond the point over
there.
We were three years, continued Nils, sea-otter
hunting on the Island of Gusina. further west,
near Belkoffsky. But there are so many white
men that we determined to move. Besides, the
Alaska Company sendJj fleets of Indians with their
I bidarkies' there every summer to hunt sea-
otters. When a sea-otter dives you can never tell
where it will come up next. It can remain below
for over twenty minutes without coming to the
surface to breathe.
We pay from forty to sixty dollars each for the
skins to the Indians. They are used for trim
ming, and would be too expensive to make whole
coats of. They practically last for ever. The
otters dofjft feed on fish; fjre hardly ever find fish
inside them when we cut them up—generally sea-
|§ugs and sea-urchins; a favourite food is cuttle-
One day we saw an otter, but had no rifle with
us in the boat. We rowed towards it, however,
as a matter of course, and found a large cuttle-
fish clinging to its head, and we were able to kill
I
Si SEAL SKINS.
155
the otter with an oar. Bits of the arms of this
octopus were in the otter's stomach. Its arms
were three feet long. Seals are often killed in
this way, but no one we have seen had ever heard
of a sea-otter taken thus.
Fur-seal skins are best dyed in London. The
secret has never been found out. Some one from
San Francisco once got employment as a workman
by the London firm for two years, but he knew
no more about their secret at the end of the two
years than when he began. The dyeing is the
mystery. The long hairs can be plucked out in
'Frisco as well as they can be in London, but the
dye will not last. Here are two fur caps, one of
London dyed seal-skin, that I bought last year at
Bremen when I went home to Sweden to fetch my
wife—it cost three pounds ten ; and here (showing
me a lighter coloured one) is a San Francisco sealskin cap that only cost half that price. I have
worn it a good deal, yet you can see that it never
was as good as the London one.
The trees ? Yes, the trees are grown and bent
into a fixed position by the continual winds from
the north-east. We get very strong east winds
here. West of this, towards Kodiak, they get
more west wind.    It mostly blows from the west 156
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
there in winter. I have noticed that if it blows
north-east without rain for a few hours, then it is
sure to last; but if we have a north-easter with
rain from the first, it is soon over. The east wind
always brings rain, and the wind is mostly east
at Kaiak. A failing glass in summer often means
calms here. The glass generally rises for east
winds and rain.
Kaiak Island, August i%th.
I went round the Indian houses to-day. At
Yakatat there ^ere six houses, each forty feet
square and fifteen in height, accommodating several
families. In front of each house was a platform
from which one entered the building by a small
round door, requiring some considerable squeezing
^paccomplish. By a flight of steps one descended
to the floor, which was strewn with gravel, and sunk
to increase the space inside. In the very centre
was the fireplace, from which the smoke ascended
through a large square hole in the roof. Round
three sides ran a broad seat, on which, one stepped
to enter the low, draughty, sleeping-place behind.
Four large wooden idols graced the chiefs house,
like " totem poles," carved in the usual style. The
Kaiak houses were differently constructed. After
much constriction one manages to insinuate oneself
*i THE INDIANS OF KAIAK.
157
into a windy hovel barely five feet high. It is
necessary to keep crouching to avoid the shelves
full of dried salmon skins. The children commence
crying, and the dogs growl and retreat into corners,
but the grown members of the family preserve a
stolid apathy.    Small round holes eighteen inches
Indian Hovels at Kaiak.
in diameter lead to the sleeping places, built out
from the main walls.
Among the numerous nasty customs, that of
all ages and both sexes using the same quid of
tobacco, promiscuously, it being rolled up in a ball
with ashes and kept in a small box or bag, strikes
one as the most repugnant.
The party of Indian sea-otter hunters, composed i58
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
of twenty-four men and twelve " bidarkies " or sealskin canoes, returned this afternoon from Cape St.
Elias with two otters. As soon as they were seen
coming, a pair of old Swedish naval epaulets was
rummaged up and fastened on my coat, till I resembled an exhibition of gold lace or caricature of
an admiral in full dress. I protested it was overdoing the thing. But no—I must come down and
have the chief presented to me as soon as he had
landed. His name was Klok-Shegees. In the
evening the medicine-man was summoned, and I
had to pretend to be taking notes. I did actually
take down the names of those present, such as
Cronook, Tookh, Yaak, Schlateet Katay, Stagaat,
Katata, Kokoonook, and Ke, and the shawaan himself, Doushagow. He would take us himself to
Nuchuk in his yak or large canoe, with two others
to paddle, for three blankets, and we are to start
when the weather becomes fine.
Every day the natives have been gathering
cockles at low water. The I tongues' of these
they were now salting and smoking. In one hut
an aged woman never for one instant ceased groaning loudly and depressingly. In another a man
was  dying  of consumption;   some  women  were
I
ggSggjg" THE CHIEF PRESENTED.
159
1
rubbing his body with their hands moistened with
saliva.
Klok-Shegees in his "Store" Clothing.
These Indians, like the Chukche Esquimaux, do
not expectorate on the gravel floor.    Whatever the i6o
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
reason may be, it has nothing to do with delicacy;
but unlike the Chukche dogs, these dogs can bark.
Doushagow, the shawaan, who is to take us to
Nuchuk, has voluntarily cut his long hair ; perhaps
because it is more civilised, or possibly in consequence of having heard of the shawaan at Kilisnoo,
in South-east Alaska, who for certain misdeeds had
his head shaved and painted red on board The
Pinta.
Kaiak Island, August igth.
For the last five days it has rained without a
moment's interval. Wind moderate from, the northeast. To-day the wind is south-west, and consequently it is beautifully fine. This change in the
direction of the wind is invariably followed by a
corresponding change in the weather. This rule
holds good from the St. Elias Alps to the Kenai
Peninsula, if not farther. We are preparing to start
to-morrow, as the shawaan thinks the swell too
heavy to-day, though where or how it could harm
us is at present wrapped in obscurity, for none of
the white men have travelled by canoe to Nuchuk,
and though Nils and Olaf speak the language fairly,
an Indian is quite incapable of entering into any
explanations. The Indian jargon here consists of
a mixture of Chilcat, Russian, and Chinook. PREPARATIONS.
161
These Indians designate themselves as Chilcats,
as though connected with the Chilcats and Chil-
coots at the head of Lynn's Canal, but are known
to these traders as Coloshes. The traders have
arranged that the medicine-man is to take us to
Nuchuk for fifteen dollars, or as before-mentioned
for three blankets. He has bargained to bring his
wife with him, who will paddle, and also two other
Indians.
I (     162     )
WBBBBPBf chapter viii. ^^^m I
We are forced to stop at Martin Point—Raw Salmons' Noses—-A
Bear shot—A Drunken Indian Village—Sliding over the Mud
of the Copper River Delta—The Squaw kills a Salmon—Camp
on an Island—Estuary of the Copper River—Camp on Hawkins Islands—The Indians Washing—Caught in a Gale—
Salmon-fishing Extraordinary—Description of an Alaskan
Scene—Captain Cook in Prince William Sound—We arrive at
Nuchuk.
Camp at the Indian Village, Point Martin,
August 20th, 8 p.m.
We paddled from the beach at Kaiak at 10 a.m.
this morning, amid salvoes of guns from the
Indians, to which we replied from the canoe.
Having made the fifteen miles to this place in
four hours across Controller's Bay, as Cook named
it, we endeavoured feebly to induce the shawaan
to continue until nightfall, as, though at present
landing was easy, any increase in the wind
might raise a swell, that would keep us prisoners
for days, the only protection being two small
islands. Yet the old man insisted that we must
stay at the Indian village here, though it was but
two o'clock in the afternoon. FROM KAIAK TO POINT MARTIN.
165
A crowd of Indians came out, one stationed on
high ground, whence he could see the breakers
coming, and choose a calm moment for us to shoot
into shore, where the rest soon hauled us high and
dry upon the beach.
If we were in the estuary of the Copper River,
behind the sand-bars, we should be independent of
At Martin Point.
the weather. To-day is fine, the opening into
the lagoons is close at hand—to-morrow may be
stormy—yet we are compelled to lie all the day
idle.
We cooked some salmon for dinner on the beach,
the  shawaan having  previously sliced  off  raw,
«*• 164
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA
with a knife, and eaten the whole skin of the
heads and the bridges of the noses of the fish.
The Indian village is partially fenced with
stockading; the houses are merely single-roomed,
but of moderate size. Long ago. there was a fur-
grading post here, but it was abandoned. From this
neighbourhood, northwards to Cook's Inlet, white
mountain goats are found on the mountains.
We were now on the mainland, and as the day
was fine, I set out with the rifle to look for anything
in the shape of game that might chance along the
shore to the eastward. Some miles off a small stream
emptied into the sea. Fresh tracks of bear were to
be seen along the bank, and I was soon fortunate
enough to find one of these animals engaged in
searching for fish apparently, as he was crouching on
a, rock, occasionally dipping a paw in the water, and
not yet aware of any dange||| Stalking the animal
with care to within a distance of fifty yards, I aimed
carefully from behind a tree at the shoulder low
down, and planted an English express solid bullet
"iti a vital place, for he fell into the stream, and
scrambling on to the opposite shore, lay down in
extremis. I remained concealed till sure that he
was powerless to do any damage. A second shot
was  unnecessary.    The  animal was of moderate
V A DRUNKEN VILLAGE.
165
size, but the fur was poor and thin, as might have
been expected. The winter coat is the thickest,
and the skins are then more valuable. It was not
worth the trouble of skinning; some of the Indians
will go for it to-morrow if they want it.
This evening in the tent the shawaan endeavoured to explain, in a mixture of English and
Chinook words, that he wished to be, or was,
shawaan of all the Chilcats—would I give him
a paper ? He was promised one when we readfied
Nuchuk. Could I draw a picture of San Francisco ? I replied it was too large. Was it larger
than this village ? I took up a grain of sand and
said "Point Martin;' then a whole handful, and
said I San Francisco." He then said he would
paddle us well to Nuchuk if I would only give him
a paper to say he was | goot shawaan," if the man-
of-war came. Yes, to-morrow it would be fine,
and we would start early.
Camp on an Island,
Mouth of the Copper River,
August 21st, 5 p.m.
The shawaan and his wife came back from the
village this morning long after the sun had risen
and lay down in a drunken sleep, blear-eyed and
disfigured by their debauch.    To rouse them we i66
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
had to take their tent down from over their heads.
Luckily the weather is fine, and the surf has
moderated. They insisted on boiling some salmon
before starting, and asked us to hire two more
Indians to paddle. It was thought best to acquiesce, to a^>id further delay. Meanwhile the
natives came down to the beach, all being drunk,
and we experienced a mauvais quart d'heure, but
fortunately they were amiably drunk. Our men
were sobered by wading through the surf when
we launched. The only way of getting off without delay was to carry the canoe ourselves to the
water'! edge, which we did, and got away at 8 a.m.
The inhabitants had been holding a "pot-latch'
the whole night on the vile stuff they distil from
sugar, for which purpose there are retorts in nearly
every house here.
When an Indian or Indians have to do anything,
one can never be sure beforehand concerning any
particular portion of the proceedings. We were
not, it now appeared, going to cross the bar of the
Copper River at all, though the swell was quite
moderate. A mile away the Indians turned shore-
wards and beached the canoe. Everything was
carried over the sand ridge. We found ourselves
at the commencement or extreme corner of the
11 SLIDING OVER THE OOSE.
167
tidal lagoons of the Copper River delta. The tide
was out, and nothing but wet mud was to be seen
lying between steep timbered slopes and the sand
ridge. It was ten o'clock by the time the canoe was
lying on the mud loaded, and everything ready
for a new start. Then commenced a, to me, novel
method of locomotion, viz., Sliding over mud with
the canoe, like sledging on snow.
The yak, though thirty feet in length and five
in breadth, was hewn out of a single tree; her
bottom was smooth and keelless, and glided swiftly
and easily over the black, slippery ooze, which
gave out a disagreeable and putrefying smell. We
slipped about on it with our bare feet as we pushed
behind the canoe to meet the tide which was now
flowing.
Doushagow's (the medicine-man's) wTife now
came up with a fine salmon she had killed in one
of the small brooks that issued from the forest;
and, reaching a channel of running water, we were
able to float the canoe. As the tide rose the
channels seemed to abound with salmon, which
kept leaping out of water, whichever side one
turned to look. Meanwhile the two Point Martin
Indians had been paid, had accepted the agreed
amount, and had left us.
1 168
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
We were now opposite the first opening from
the bar through the sand reefs into the Copper
River delta. The whole delta now opened out to
view, bounded on both sides by ranges of snowcapped mountains, which unfolded gradually to
view as we neared the centre of the expanse, an
area of at least thirty miles each way. On a point
were two Indian houses, where we waited for the
tide to rise. Two canoes meantime came up across
the flat. When they reached any stretch of bare
mud, the men would paddle on as though it were
water, and the light "battok' would "snake'
over the slippery surface like a fish struggling to
regain its native element. In one of the canoes
lay a seal freshly killed.
We camped for the night on a small island a
third of the way across—bare, but strewn with
dry driftwood suitable for a fire.
Camp in a Cove, Hawkins Islands,
August 22d, 10 p.m.
This morning I woke at 3.15 a.m., and roused
Doushagow, for the tide was covering the mud
rapidly. It was blowing bitterly cold from the
glaciers,' but it was a north-westerly or fine-
weather wind.     He wore his coat  of bird-skins THE COPPER RIVER.
169
with the feather side turned inwards. The two
other Indians were as usual lightly clad in cotton
cloth, and shivering from  the  chilliness   of   the
air.
Being now towards the centre of the estuary
of the river, the mountain scenery of the shores
lay spread in panoramic view, commencing from
Martin Point, the east extremity, to Cape Whit-
August 22d, 5 A.M., looking N.W.
shed on the west. While looking northward the
eye plunges into the narrowing valley from which
the Copper River issues, until barred by a blue
range of mountains fifty miles distant which impedes further view. From Point Martin to where
the mountains first commence to close or approach
together, shutting in the river between them, a
distance of twenty miles, a low dark range
stretches,  from three to  four  thousand  feet in
I
«RW 170
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
height, on which I counted eighteen small glaciers
on the summits and four large glaciers in the
valleys below. This line of mountains is broken
midway by a gap eight miles wide, which allows
a view *of an extensive
snowy range lying behind,
the highest summit of which
appears to be at least thirteen or fourteen thousand
feet in height, with six
other peaks of slightly lesser
altitude near it.
The opposite shore of the
delta is of much more remarkable formation. From
the valley from which the
river issues to the middle
portion of this shore the
mountains project out into
the tidal alluvial plain. On
this part I counted fifteen
small summit glaciers and
two large valley glaciers, spreading out, like
all Alaskan glaciers, with beautiful fan-like
shape to the river level. But from this projecting   point   to   Cape   Whitshed,   twenty-five
A Man of Oodiak ; sketched at
Nuchuk, Oct. 9th.
HA t
£S A SEA OF MOUNTAINS.
171
miles to the west, the shores trend back and
form a deep wide bay, in which are situated the
two villages of Alagnuk and Oodiak. This portion of the mountains is thickly timbered below,
and almost devoid of summit glaciers, except a
few very small ones. But there are three large
valley glaciers to be seen—one a double glacier.
Behind and back lie a lofty sea of peaks. Two
close   by   are   aiguilles,  sharp  and  cone-shaped.
August 22d, I P.M.
Another, which seems the highest, rises in castellated terraces to a height of apparently 12,000
feet.
At 6.30 A.M., the wind, which had favoured us,
died quite away. At 9.30 we were stopped by
shallows while endeavouring to find a channel.
The bottom now being sandy, it was no longer
feasible to push the canoe over the bare flats. I
shot three ducks which came alongside within a
ill
11 17
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
few yards with a rifle, my gun being left with the
New York Times party.
We wished to stay quiet until the tide rose
sufficiently to allow us to proceed, but Doushagow
insisted on returning by a long detour against tide
and river current to one of the bare flat islands,
where the Indians could find driftwood enough
to cook the salmon and ducks for themselves.
Putting out again at i p.m., with a flowing tide,
we kept on st^dUy until 7 p.m., at times using the
sail. The two Indians in the bow kept on paddling
whether there was a favourable breeze or no, the
shawaan steering in the stern, and his wife occasionally paddling a little: We were now at Cape
Whitshed, and about to land for the night in a
convenient cove; but the breeze springing up
strongly from the ed|t, we continued on, and
camped by a small brook on this island as the
last light vanished in the west.
Another Camp on Hawkins Islands,
Six Miles farther West,
August 23d, 10 p.m.
As soon as the yak was hauled up last night,
two of the Indians disappeared, and returned in
ten miputes from the direction of the little stream
IgHth fifteen salmon, of from three to six pounds'
fi) THE PREVAILING WIND.
173
weight. It was evident that one could hardly
starve, though the store of pilot bread should run
quite out.
About midnight it commenced raining, accompanied by the usual east wind. The tents were
sheltered by beetling cliffs and overhanging boughs
of trees. It was clear from the decided bent and
growing to the westward of the branches of the
trees that this was the normal and prevailing direction of the wind,
while the damp luxuriant undergrowth
proclaimed plainly
in unspoken words,
" la pluie, encore la
pluie, et toujours la
pluie!'
Any photograph of the forests during a perfect
calm would give the idea that a violent easterly
wind was raging, the tortured and wind-torn
branches having grown and fixed themselves into
the position given to them by the strong prevailing
winds, stretching their petrified and supplicating
arms towards the west.
This morning the Indians were to be seen
washing with soap  and water,  while   the   only
How the Trees Grow in Alaska.
1
4 174
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
m
vessel containing the latter was the large sauce-
o o
pan just brought to boil our breakfast of salmon
in; it remaining, notwithstanding, perfectly unsullied all the while. This was as mystifying as
any conjuring trick, till Doushagow was observed
to stoop over the pot and suck up a mouthful,
which he squirted over his ^ hands while applying
the soap, after the fashion of a Chinaman.
The wind now increased every moment. The
Indians advised remaining, and the shaawan put
on his greatcoat of bear-gut over the one he
already wore of bird-skins. Nevertheless we set
off, and found the wind more violent than we
expected, raising small waves which threatened
to engulf the canoe. As we coasted along the
shore there was shelter from the ocean swell, yet
we shipped some seas. With but a single mast
and small sprit-sail in the bows, she flew over the
water at a most exciting speed, quite outpacing
the steep and curling billows. Olaf, who was
holding the sheet-ropes, complained that they
were cutting into his hands, every one else keeping their paddles in the water to keep her straight
before the wind, while the shawaan kept up an
incessant shouting of orders to the two other
Indians.     Presently the sprit bent and cracked, SALMON IN COUNTLESS NUMBERS.
175
and had to be held together. It was too unsafe
to last long, so she was turned into the first inlet,
beached and emptied, and once more camp was
pitched. In half an hour we had completed six
miles, our total for to-day. More beetling cliffs
offered dry stowage room and a sheltered spot for
the fire. More surprises were yet in store. A
small brooklet, but a yard wide and three inches
deep, trickled from the woods across the beach.
It was completely crowded with salmon, and the
water being not of a depth to cover them, their
backs were bare. At first sight it seemed that
some of the fish were affected with a fungoid
growth, but on lifting one from the water it became evident that the white patches were the
marks of struggles in the shallow water over the
sharp stones and shingle. There appeared to be
truly a greater bulk of salmon than there was of
water in the brook. As I approached, their
wriggling and splashing almost emptied the pools
of the little water that existed in them, in efforts to
find shelter in the deeper water that did not exist.
Some lay still, as though exhausted: others made
feeble movements with the tail, whi||, anywhere
in a length of ten yards of the stream, was food
enough for us for a week.    I followed the brook 176
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
I
some twenty yards up its course, until fallen trees
and damp bushes turned me back, and everywhere
the surface was a mass of the moving and swaying
backs of the foolish fish—the lordly salmon in water
barely deep ejkmgh to harbour a minnow! Some
had insinuated themselves into extraordinary and
seeminglj| inaccessible positions, and could neither
advance nor retreat without landing themselves
high and dry. This explained the ease with which
the Indians returned last night loaded with fish.
Dead salmon, half eaten by foxes, lay strewn along
the banks. Tea, with boiled salmon and salmon-
roe, formed our lunch; boiled salmon and roe,
with tea, composed the dinner; and tea, with boiled
salmon-roe and salmon, the supper; and still the
east wind blows and the rain descends. At their
meals the Indians generally commence with tea
and a small piece of " hard-tack/' and then eat the
skins of the raw salmorJ|, heads before attacking
the contents of the pot of boiled salmon.
The stream was gradually rising. From the tent
door, through the smoke and rain, I watched the
salmon ascending the streamlet in Indian file, fish
succeeding and following fish in endless procession;
each fish resembling a miniature screw-steamer
unballasted, with the propeller half out of water ALASKAN RAIN.
177
and splashing, as they ploughed up the shallows
like moving fountains. In fact, the sight from
the brook-side was as of a vast fishmonger's slab! as
there averaged twelve salmon to every two square
yards of water. Some had been edged and pressed
on to dry land by the very crowds of their companions, and were shuffling over the beach to
regain their native element.
Meanwhile the Indians had built an enormous
fire, which was raising clouds of steam from everything. The rain was falling with Alaskan earnestness, in columns and sheets of heavy drops, which
even splashed in dew-like spray through the
material of the 'tents, until we pinned our mackintoshes on the outside.
Nuchuk, Indian Village, Hinchinbrook Island,
Prince William Sound, August 26th.
It was the last effort of the east wind, for at
midnight the wind became westerly, bringing with
it, as a matter of course, fine weather and a clear
sky, and 6 a.m. saw us once more en route.
We were now passing down the straits between
the islands of Hawkins and Hinchinbrook, as the
early navigators  called  them.    The  shores  were
thickly wooded, with steep cliffs and innumerable
M 178
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
ill   I
little bays, while small islands were distributed
here and there. The narrowest part of the channel
is but a hundred yards in width, with two rocky
islands in the opening. The stillness and dim
light of early morning lent a charm to the scenery,
which was now Alaskan at its very best, in form, in
colour, and surroundings; the high-prowed canoe
with a suspicion of a Venetian gondola lurking
somewhere about its front, or embodied in its
black paint; the couple of black-haired Indians,
brown and lithe, paddling in front monotonously;
the dark green water, profoundly deep; the steep
purple cliffs, furrowed by the waves, indented with
small bays, coves, and caves, and shadowed by
overhanging firs and shrubs; the snow-patched
hills of Nuchuk, resembling the Snowdon range,
and reddened by the rising sun; the bird life, and
the lines of kelp or bladder weed fringing the
shore, along deep water, and in which now and
again a silver salmon would leap and splash. Nor
must I omit from the catalogue of sensations the
peculiar faint indescribable Indian odour that
pervaded the canoe, with a flavour and a rich raci-
ness all its own—an odour which, if it could be
once more inhaled, were I in any part of the world,
would revive the most vivid memory of Alaska.
ill
^ PRINCE WILLIAM SOUND.
179
Next moment we shot round the north-west
cape of Nuchuk, to find Prince William Sound
.spread before us, dotted with large islands, the
tops of which seemed to quiver and float in the
mirage. The sharp white ice-peaks fringing the
greater part of the horizon were of smaller mould
than the gigantic masses of the St. Elias range;
but powdered with fresh snow, and in the absence
of any such competitors, they formed a sufficiently
attractive background to one of the most interest-
ing inland seas or fords on the coast of Alaska.
Commencing from the mountains of the mysterious
Kenai Peninsula, which are low, with broad flat
glaciers, as the eye sweeps round, the ranges
gradually increase in height, till they attain their
loftiest elevation in a bold ridge embosomed in
extensive fields of snow near the actual head of
the Sound.
Vancouver's boats explored portions of Prince
William Sound. On their landing at what they
named Port Gravina, near the present Indian
village of Tateekluk, they found " an old bear
nearly at the top of a pine-tree with two cubs;
the former immediately descended and made its
escape, but the young ones were shot, and afforded
an excellent dinner."     The party,  however, had
!
1
wm immmmm
I So
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
11
fared tolerably well on this expedition, having
shot many wild fowl, and on most of the rocks
where they had landed eggs had been procured in.
great abundance (June 1794).
We now turned to the south for Port Etches.
Promontory and headland succeeded one another
as we skirted the northern shore of the island.
For some reason the Indians had cooked no breakfast for themselves before setting out, nor did they
break their fast until we rounded the last point
and came in view of Nuchuk village—seven hours
steady going from the start; for an Indian can
eat much or little according to circumstances, or
at short or long intervals indifferently, or go without food altogether, and yet be happy.
A store and fur-agency, the houses having been
O J 7 o
built by the Russians, a small church, and fifteen
to twenty Indian or Aleut houses, situated on
a peninsula jutting out into a noble bay, and
forming one of the best harbours in Alaska—
such, in few wTords, is Port Etches or Nuchuk,
which; is the only evidence of civilisation in the
differict.
As we sailed down towards the settlement, for
a fair wind had sprung up, we could see the
inhabitants running down to the shore.    The surf NUCHUK.
181
was quiet enough to allow our landing on the
outer beach instead of having to make the long
round of the promontory into the inner harbour,
and as soon as we arrived the fur agent offered HI
the use of his house.
m (    182   )
CHAPTER IX.
ft
Our Life at Nuchuk—A Native BaU^The Natives start oil a Sea-
Otter Hunt in Bidarkies—Description of a Bidarky^-Climbing
after GroiHe—MiUions of Salmon—Spearing and Hooking them
—Salmon-Drying—Our Russian Bath—A Description of Nuchuk
and the Game and Food of Prince William Sound—How the
Natives Live, and how the Alaska Commercial Company of San
Francisco Trades with them—The Natives as Captain Cook
found them.
" Where in the still deep water,
Sheltered from waves and blasts,
Bristles the dusky forest
Of Byrsa's thousand masts,
Where fur-clad hunters wander
Amidst the northern ice."
Nuchuk, September 2d, 1886.
On the four evenings following our arrival "dances"
were held, as the whole male population was daily
in expectation of leajptag on a fortnight's sea-otter
hunt—dependent on the weather.
The first night's entertainment was in the house
of Vanya, brother of the second chief. The next
in that of Pavil, the Tyoon, or chief. Then Peter,
the Shekaizik, or second chief, was the host.
But when we had again to dance until two in
the morning in the small, close, single room of the WE BECOME DISSIPATED.
183
Tyoon, which was his house, or give mortal offence,
it was with reluctant steps that we led our Indian
brides, or rather partners, along the garbage-strewn
pathway, preceded by players on the accordion and
the guitar, to where bright oil lamps and an unusual number of candles marked his abode. It
was in just
and merited
retaliation,
for, the first
night, when
the second
chief had been honoured,
it was  the  Tyoon who
had cleared his room and  ^^5^^^^atJ
removed  his  stove and  fijljj§||llj|
his   door   in   expectation     Nuchuk-The Baidars or Baiderars
« -1 »      i of the Copper River Indians.
01 our  arrival.     A description  of one  night's festivity  will serve  for
all four.
Imagine, then, a one-roomed log-house, every
corner and seat occupied with children and grown
persons dressed in their dirty prints or cotton shirts.
The infants sleep peaceably through the noise on
a bed under which some tamed wild-duck live and
feed.    The half-dozen Aleut squaws who know the 184
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
figures of the Russian quadrille occupy prominent
places on the floor, unless they have accompanied
us from the trader's house, j Partners " is called,
and we make sides and perform the different figures
to the various words of command shouted in a
monotone by the trader, and which soon became
mechanically familiar, such as i sides forward and
back, one lady over," or § balance and swing—
swing,"  or  f grand  right   and  left  with  double
s.
ilkr 1 i     il w
«>*
^
Nt/shek — /Kr A^S ta-w Chuxeh .
1
swing," which invariably ended|in confused collisions, for the frame of the Aleut squaw is none of
the most fragile. Keeping on one's hat, smoking,
or expectorating on the floor, would of course be
quite in order. About midnight tea and pilot-
bread appears; after the men are satisfied, then
the cups are filled again for i the ladies."
After the quadrille, an Aleut dance by two of
the men takes place, which so shakes the house, THE NATIVES GO HUNTING.
i8<
that were the structure not of wood, one would
fear for its safety, so energetic are their leaps and
bounds. Then a waltz—only room for one couple,
who aim to revolve as rapidly and as long as
possible, till dizzy and exhausted, they sink down
on some unoccupied part of the floor. Such is an
Alaskan ball.
On the 30th the men all left on a sea-otter hunt
j\
Bidarkies.
in seventeen bidarkies. pfhe boats having been
laid in a row on the beach, and everything prepared, they filed away in procession to their small
Russian church for a blessing. The priest is the
trader's cook. After this ceremony they must not
enter any house, but quickly launch and away
without further ado. if
186
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
These bidarkies are constructed of sealskin over
a light wooden frame. No nail is used, as that
would be considered unlucky. Consequently the
parts are bound together with roots and sinews,
and over all is sewed the skin or luftak. The
curiously shaped double prow the Indians will
never vary in shape.
On the deck are two (rarely one, though sometimes threejferound holes, to admit of the occupants
kneeling. A considerable amount can be carried,
distributed in !|mall packages in the interior. Thus
the trader lately returned from the mainland with
thirty-seven "red salmon," besides bedding and
utensils; while to-day an Indian arrived carrying in his "one-hatch' bidarky the greater part
of a bear, some ducks, a heron, and some "silver
salmon." There being no room to use any bailer,
an egg-shaped tjibe ^^aken to suck up any water
that might have entered. It is affirmed by whites
and Indians to be the safest of any of the smaller
craft in rough weather.
^Invariably with these boats is used a waterproof
coat, or Kamleyga of bear guts sewn together, or
sea-lion guts ; this is tied round the circular opening in such a manner that no water can, by any
possibility short of leakage, reach the interior of
ii THE BIDARKIES.
187
the canoe. When once launched, the natives will
pass through breaking surf in a bidarky, under
which she appears to dive like a duck or loom, and
will face weather unsafe for an ordinary canoe.
To launch their | two-hatch' bidarkies, the bow
or forward paddler first took his seat, the boats
being at the water's edge. Watching his opportunity
the other then pushed her off, and jumped not in
but on her, till he could shake the water from his
legs, both paddling their best in the meantime till
beyond the breakers.
I ascended the hill yesterday, on the west side
of the bay, on the second attempt, being repulsed
the first time by the thickness of the underbrush.
On the far horizon, fifty miles south, was visible
Middleton Island, where a small settlement has
been established. The Company propose to start a
ranche of foxes there. The best farming land in
Alaska is situated on the island, which is not great
praise. Hitherto the only crop has been one of
the eggs of sea-fowls, which breed there in incredible
numbers. There is no harbour. An Indian carried
my trade gun, for ptarmigan abound, and I found a
covey on the ridge.
The view of Prince William Sound was but
slightly more extensive than from below, but the i88
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
view over Nuchuk Island was worth the trouble of
the ascent. Coming down another way in pursuit
of a flock of ptarmigan some smooth and difficult
grass slopes had to be descended, at an angle of
quite sixty degrees from the horizontal. The
Indian advised taking off boots, for some of the
nails had come out; meanwhile one had to slide
down the very steepest of grassy gullies with " five
points of contact," assisted by the bushes and
ruggedness of the slope.
1
Nuchuk, September 4th, 1886.
Yesterday I went in the f dory" to the nearest
river to observe the salmon. Before starting there
was quite an excitement at what appeared to be
the schooner; th|| telescope resolved the object
into a floating tree with branches standing out like
masts.
Reaching the river, the water seemed alive with
the karbusha or hogback salmon. It was nowhere
over a foot and a half in depth. Long processions
of salmon swam up and down the stream, those
descending keeping mostly next the banks. None
showed any alarm at the boat, and when our craft
had become half filled with struggling fish the
novelty of spearing*f;hem had partly worn off. A SALMON-RIVER.
189
The Alaskan salmon in fresh water (I had disproved this theory as to salt water at Sitka), is
said to care nothing for any artificial bait. Throwing out from the boat across the current a spoonbait tied to a line and weighted, for the rod had
long since been lost on the shores of Icy Bay, I
drew it slowly in. For fear of hooking foul of one
out of the dense crowd of salmon, it was necessary
not to throw more than a yard or two from the
boat. Most of the fish were spent and seemed
sluggish and tame; but one or two, and these
always clean fresh-run fish, would summon energy
for a feeble rush, and if it were not dragged through
the water too rapidly would open wide their jaws
and close them upon the piece of glittering metal
—all this in full view close alongside the boat.
Next, a large halibut hook was tied on the line,
and cast across the stream: the whole length of
line could then be felt, borne up and prevented
from sinking by the mass of moving backs on which
it rested, and when it was drawn in, the point of
the hook usually found out some holding spot on
some part of a salmon, which could be dragged
splashing and struggling into the now loaded boat.
On the way back we fired several rifle shots at a
moving object quite like a sea-otter, before making «
I
190
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
the discovery that it was an Indian dog swimming
at least a fourth of a mile from shore. The impingement of the bullets seemed to add fresh vigour
to its movements.
Nothing can be imagined in fish nomenclature
more confusing than the varying names of Alaskan
salmon. On this portion of the coast they are
catalogued into six kinds, as follows :—
First, the chavicha or "king'   salmon, which
' O 7
runs or enters the rivers from May 20th till
August, being most plentiful in June. In Cook's
Inlet their proportion at this time to the other
salmon is as one to three. The greatest length of
the king salmon is six feet, and weight 100 lbs.
At the two canning and salting works in Cook's
o o
Inlet 15,500 were taken in 1880. In addition to
the Kassiloff and Kenai Rivers in Cook's Inlet, the
king salmon is also found in the Alanuk or Aleganuk
River, near the Indian village of that name at the
mouth of the Copper River;. brought from which
river to this place a fresh king salmon is worth just
ten cents.
Second, the "red" salmon or krasnee, which runs
the whole summer. These two kinds of salmon
are the only sorts used for canning, except at
Kassiloff. where  the  silver salmon is also used. THE SALMON OF ALASKA.
191
The nearest river from Nuchuk for red salmon
is the Isha in Prince William Sound, where are
ruins of old Russian or Indian weirs, though a
few may be found in almost any river.
Third, the " silver " salmon or kiswich, of a whiter
tinge of flesh.
Fourth, the "steelhead' or somga, which resembles the silver salmon, except in possessing a
head invulnerable to blows.
j^si
m
>^^^tej
I
I
i ill
Fifth, comes the i hogback " or karbusha, which
runs in August and September.
Sixth, the i dog' salmon or hiko, running at
the same time—a coarse fish, with large teeth and
scales.
The women are now engaged in splitting salmon
for drying for their winter supply of eukola or
ookla,  contenting   themselves  with  the  hogback
1 192
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
salmon and sea-trout at present, as the silver
salmon has not yet arrived in the rivers of the bay.
The value here of a salmon dried and smoked for
keeping is just one cent. A portion only of the
salmon is taken—a thin layer adhering to the skin,
and another to the backbone—for a greater thickness would take longer to dry. The supply of
salmon is practically unlimited.
Every Saturday we use the small Russian bath
which is built on to one side of the old store-house.
It consists of two small apartments with thick log walls.   In
the inner room is a fireplace
HBWBB^^   without any chimney for heat-
jaw-boneof a "Dog-salmon." ing to redness the pile of rocks
Nuchuk, Aug. 1886.
placed upon it. It takes about
five hours to accomplish this; then the fire is
extinguished, the window is closed, a vessel of cold
and another of hot water are placed within, and
the bath is ready. One by one we four white
men take our baths, and afterwards the Indian
girJp and women employed about the house. One
has to be cautious not to touch the ceiling, begrimed
as it is with soot. To raise the temperature to any
extent required, one has merely to sprinkle water
upon the red-hot stones in the corner. NUCHUK HARBOUR.
19:
Between Nuchuk or Hinchinbrook Island and
Sukluk or Montague Island is the entrance to
Prince William Sound (called Nenoork or Chugak),
through which the tidal currents race back and
forth with great velocity.
Nuchuk Bay is walled in between two straight
Nuchuk—Our Home for Two Months.
and parallel ranges of steep mountains, on which
are some comparatively insignificant glaciers. At
the head of the bay is a solitary cone, probably an
extinct volcano. A harbour with a narrow entrance
is formed by a large island connected with the
western cape by a sand ridge.    This is subdivided
into an inner harbour too  shallow for  ships  by
I
i 194
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
another sand ridge. WTiere the first sand-bar joins
the island is situated the Indian village and the
Alaska Company's store of Nuchuk. Captain
Cook once anchored in the outer harbour. The
trader's house is on the site of the old fort called
St. Constantine—now no more. In short, Port
Etches or Nuchuk was once a Russian stronghold
I-'v
Prince William Sound, Alaska, with Nuchuk Harbour.
and a populous Indian settlement, and played an
important part in the early history of Alaska.
From hence westward the Aleuts take the place of
the Indians, excepting in Cook's Inlet, and Russian
traits are often observable. As the mixture of different nationalities is said to produce strong offspring,
so this addition of Russian blood has probably
prolonged the existence of the Indian races. They
seemed a- far finer set mentally and physically than
I SEALS, SEA-LIONS, GEESE AND DUCKS.
195
the Yakatats. Their ethnographical divisions and
a theory of the migrations of the different tribes
are set forth in Petroff's U.S. Report on Alaska
(1880). Roughly speaking, the mouth of the
Copper River is the spot which has been the limit
or point of junction of the Indian races which
belong to the South, to the North, and to the East.
In January the sea-lions enter the sound, and
in May the fur-seals arrive.
The latter remain a week or
two, occasionally shifting their
ground before disappearing until the following year. Whence
they come and whither they I
go is a mystery unknown even
to the Indians. Perchance the
Fur Seal Islands is their next
rendezvous.
In September and October swarms of ducks and
geese enter the bays and inlets of the sound.
Seven of these wild geese, lately captured by some
Indians, are now feeding round the house like the
common or domestic goose, being dark brown
birds, with a white band on the head. In Prince
William Sound any quantity of salmon can be
speared or netted the whole summer through, but
<\ <rru>**. cri QocUoJL .
TujwMaM . OCf
&>.
H 196
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
so improvident are the natives that they have
frequently omitted to dry sufficient salmon, or
turn it into eukla, for the winter's consumption,
and have been dependent for food upon the trader.
Bears and goats are killed all the year round on
the mainland, the latter principally in the winter,
when the snow drives them down to the sea-level.
1
llcin HalildVock
In November the geese have departed south,
not to reappear till* March, but most of the ducks
remain the whole winter. In that month also
the last is seen of the salmon, but their place is
taken by sea fish—the cod, halibut, and herring.
But rarely is the weather calm enough to allow of CHARACTER OF THE NATIVES.
197
their capture out of the small canoes. The lines
used for sea-fishing are made of dried seaweed,
known as kelp or bladder weed, the resort of the
sea-otter.
The abundance of the edible berries is marvellous—strawberries, black currants, gooseberries,
blueberries, blackberries, salmon-berries, and lastly,
in October, the delicious cranberries. Such is the
wealth of food lavished upon the indolent native,
Creole, Aleut, or Indian, who now lives for the
capture of the sea-otter, and sometimes dies for it.
The characteristics of these natives are alike from
the most remote of the Aleutian Islands on the
west to Cape Flattery on the east. As long as they
have money in plenty—if they have been successful
in their last sea-otter hunt, that is—they will do
no work whatever, but will spend it lavishly and
improvidently in buying useless articles from the
nearest store of the Alaska Commercial Company,
such as eau-de-cologne (which they drink), and
fashionable boots, which they soon throw away.
When the last dollar is gone, they will ask for a
loan of provisions, to set out on another hunt or
on a trapping expedition.
The system of trading which is carried on by
the Alaska Commercial Company, shortly expressed, 198
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
is as follows. As long as Indians and sea-otters
continue to exist it will continue to be a lucrative
proceeding, if not overdone, which would surely
be the case if there were any competition. Every
spring a cargo of suitable articles is shipped from
San Francisco to Kodiak and to Unalaska, the two
main stores, and thence by schooner distributed
to the various fur posts or trading stations from
Cook's Inlet to the Aleutian Islands. This trading
material consists of cheap articles of clothing,
cotton prints, flour, sugar, tobacco, lard, and the
usual assortment of articles of that description,
besides many others of a most surprising character.
As the skins are brought to the trader—sea-otter,
fox, bear, wolf, lynx, musk-rat, marten, land-otter,
mink, or whatever they may be—a fixed price is
paid in silver dollars, which of course are soon paid
back into the store for goods.
Cook remarks as a curious fact that the coast
Indians could never have traded sea-otter skins to
the inland tribes, for these skins were never seen
at Hudson's Bay. Yet the natives of Prince
William Sound valued the sea-otter skins at that
time not so much as those <5f wild cats and
martens,'and no more than other skins, for they
gladly parted with them for a few beads.     He THE TRADE IN FURS.
199
was amused with their "antic gestures," such as
standing up motionless in a boat or baidar for
fifteen minutes quite naked and with arms extended. Their dress then, as it is now, was in
parkas or coats of ground squirrel skin and of
whale gut. (     20O     )
CHAPTER X.
II
I
Life with the Indians on the Copper River.
At Nuchuk I found the diary and the record of
the experiences of the only white man who has
ever lived among the Copper Indians. It lies just
as it was brought down last year (1885), in a soiled
canvas bag, rudely marked with the words "U.S.
Mail, Nuchuk." I     ^BHH^^^^H'
John Bremner, the writer, joined the Allen Expedition in the spring of 1885, after wintering
on the Copper River, and thence descended the
Yukon River, as my friend Schwatka had done two
years before. The intrepid prospector and plucky
Yankee must be permitted to tell his own story
"in his own quiet way," and in the language of
his class, phonetically spelt and unpunctuated, but
laconic, forcible, and unencumbered with redundant
verbiage. The Copper Indians, as I was correctly
informed by Professor Davidson of the Coast
Survey, are considered the " most obstructive' of
the coast tribes by the traders; and during their THE COPPER RIVER INDIANS.
201
periodical visits to Nuchuk, which is their nearest
trading store, twice or thrice a year, they are
continually pilfering. Aleut watchmen are paid
to guard the Company's property night and day
during their stay. On the 29th of May 1885, the
trader's diary contains the following entry—"Copper
River  Indians left to-day;  they  broke   all  the
Government instruments, and raised h  with
everything about the place." They arrive in the
spring and fall of the year in biderars, or wide, open
skin boats, some of which they generally leave
here for repairs. Sometimes their biderars are
made with reindeer skins sewn over the framework,
which they strip off and exchange for sealskins,
which are more durable and are not procurable on
the Copper River. On their last visit they sold to
the Company nine hundred dollars' worth of furs,
exchanging the money immediately after for goods,
which they bought in bulk. Nicolai Rigoroff, the
cook here, during a visit to their lower settlements
on the river lately, baptized most of the tribe at
the instigation of their medicine-man. He reported
that they possessed a large hoard of furs in a cave
at the canon, and that no salmon were permitted
to ascend the river beyond that point, which was
barricaded with weirs.    Instead of hunting much, 202
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
they exchange salmon for furs with the tribes of
the interior, for they have thus secured the monopoly of the fishing. Should a salmon succeed in
passing the barrier, it becomes an object of frantic
pursuit in the broad shallow stream, as they
imagine it would be the means of stocking with
young salmon the upper reaches of the river. But
now let John Bremner tell his own tale.
HI III
11
III
Journal of a Trip up Copper River.
Sept, i. Broke Camp about four o'clock and
made six milles river good high mountins on
the right bank and low glacier on the left.
Sept. 2. Started about six o'clock and made
about twenty miles by the coursce of the river
about twelvh miles in a strat line a low glacier
on the West for about eaght miles when the river
widend to five or six miles and verey shalow full
of sand bares hordly passable.
Sept. 3. Started before sunrise and made about
twenty-five miles by the course of the river wich
bore more to the west verey shalow cut up in a
great many channels and hordly passable a smawl
came in on the East side and killed a large Mouse
(Moose) and the Ma Nuska are stuffing it in to
themselys at a great rate.
Sept. 4. After georgeing themselvs writh Mouse
meat  till about four  o'clock  the d  rascals JOHN BREMNER'S ADVENTURES.
203
wanted to leave all my grub except one sack
of flour and they would come back in the
wenter and get it I told them no if they left my
grub they hade to leave me to I did not prepose to
trust my suplies out of my sight then they undertook to force me along but they found that uphill
woark when they looked in the muszel of my
revolver so they left me and said they would be
back in ten days how I wish I had a few of the
boys in blue here to teach them a lesson.
Sept. 5. Passed the day in the tent rained hard
all day pleasent to be alone after a mounth in
the Ma Nuska compney thare is a large opneing
in the mountins on the west side of the river but
so far of I cant tell if thar is a stream of aney sise
comeing in about three 3 mils on the West side thar
is a beautifull cascade apears to fall about one
hundred feet.
Sept. 6. Remained in camp rained hard all
day repaired some of my cloths and saw a pair of
woodcock I dont know how thay make out to live
here in winter.
Sept. 7. Went about ten miles to see that
stream that I mencentioned comeing in on the East
side it is about two hundred yards wide and not
fordeable killed four ducks and am cooking one
of them for my supper so you see I am liveing of
the enemes contrey.
Sept. 8. I claimed the mountin back of camp II
204
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
to get as good a viewe of the opening on the
west side as I could it looks as if a large stream
came in I expect it is the stream that heades in
that lake that we were talking about though I
could not get any information from the Ma Nuska
thay claim to no notheng about it they talk about
a river above Tarrayl that goes to salt water by
makeing one day's portage I dont I go a cent on
what thay say.
Sept. 9. Staid in camp all day a bear came
prowling about camp last night could not get a
shot at him it was so dark.
Sept. 10. Nothing to record onley that I am
tormented with misquiters thar name is legion.
Sept. 11. A drove of Mouse passed close to camp
in the night I shot at them by guess could not
tell if I hit one or not this morning I went ant
looked and saw whear one had bleed freely so I am
going to track him up and see if I cant get him.
Sept. 12. I did not get my Mouse he had streangth
enough to cross the river though he is dead enough
by this I am sorry to lose so much meat but better
luck next time.
Sept. 13. Alaska Bear are a fraud nothing but a
hog except the pawes I tried yesterday all day to
get in gunshot of an old one two cubes and failed
thay are more timid then a rabbet.
Sept. f4. Rained hard all day so stayed in camp
if the Ma Nuska dont come in two days more I HE ASCENDS THE RIVER.
205
shall go in to winter quarters build a cabin and
weat till the river freases.
Sept. 15. Rained all day so stayed in camp.
Sept. 16. I expect I am stuck here for a while
no sign of the Ma Nuska to-morrow I shall go to
building a cabin.
Sept. 17. Rained all day stayed in camp and made
me a cap.
Sept. 18. Rained hard all day I have given up
looking for the Ma Nuska the d  liers I will
get even with them yet and dount you forget it.
Sept. 19. The Ma Nuska came last night so thay
are better then I thought we will make another
start for Tarrel to-day in the meantime they are
stuffing themselves with beaver.
Sept. 20. Started about nine o'clock and made
twelve miles the Ma Nuska killed there beaver on
the way the valey narrowes in to about one mile in
width snow caped mountins on each side the river
is no account as a route for transportion shalow
and rapid.
Sept. 21. Rained hard till about one o'clock when
we started and did not camp till after dark made
about ten miles the river verey rapid and shalow
have to use the rope all the time a few scatring
spruce but mostly cottonwood.
Sept. 22. Started about ten o'clock raining hard
made about twelve miles the river verey rapid and
shalow the valey betwen the mountins not more
Ml «■
2o6
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
if
I
than half a mile wide scatring spruce and cotton-
wood on the hills near the river.
Sept. 23. Started about sunrise made about fifteen
miles the river verey rapid hard work to get along
the mountins not so high or ruged as they are
further down the river.
Sept. 24. Got started about six o'clock and worked
hard till after dark and made about ten miles the
river verey bad the mountins geting lower as we
get nearer the canyon the Ma Nuska say we will
get to Tarral to-day I hope so for I am about
wore out.
Sept. 25. We got an earley start and soon came to
the canyon we had no trouble in going up through
the river being so low the current wont so rapid as
it was in a good maney placeses below I dont think
the canyon is more then one mile long but when,
the river is high it must be a grand sight the river
is comprest to about one hundred and fifty yards
in weadth the sides being from fifty to one hundred
feet high we are camped on the west side of the
river whear theare is three houses we stoped hear
to see the Tayon.
Sept. 2 5. He is a large stout-looking man but ston
blind he was verey pertacler to find out what I
wanted up hear but was satessfied that I wont
going to take his throne away from him.
Sept. 26. Well I have got to the great city of
Tarrall at last forty-seven  days from Nu Chuck THE CANON, THE VILLAGE AND THE CHIEF.     207
of river to navigate no good as a
it is a h—
route to transport troops I went through the
canyon again to-day and from whear the river
first begines to narrow to the mouth is as near
as I can estimate about two miles the city con-
sistes of two houses and about forty-five or fifty
inhabitants men wemen and children and thare
is a good deal of spruce timber on the hills around
here. The Chutanah comes in some distance above
here I am going up to see it in a day or two.
Sept. 27. Nothing to record was buisey drying
my stuff which had been wet for a long time I
wont be able to get up the Chitana till it freases
when Nicoli and four more men are going up and
will help me get my grub up.
Sept. 28. Wourking hard fixing a place to winter
in it froze water in the house.
Sept. 29. The Ma Nuska have all scaterd out up
and down the river for the wenter they have no
towne but houses hear and thar along the river.
Sept. 30. The river is full of floating ice this
morning as cold as it is in November in God's
contrey and the princeple food of the inhabitants
is rabbets they apear to be a cross bet wen the jack
rabbit of the plains and comen cotentayl thar are
lotes of them around here.
Oct 1. Rained all day the weather haveing
moderated havent seen the sun but once sence
I have been hear. 208
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
Ill
Oct. 2. I am liveing alone not a native withen
two miles I went out about sundown and killed
five rabbits I am begining to live like the natives.
Oct. 3. The same dull rotine verey cold ice
running in the river.
Oct. 4. Working on my house.
Oct. 5. Ditto.
Oct. 6. Ditto.
Oct. 7. Ditto.
Oct. 8. The river frozen over so that the natives
cros it jamed in the canyon on the night of the
sixth and raised the fiver ten feet.
Oct. 9. Snowed all day about six inches on a
level.
Oct. 10. Very cold I expect it will be clear h	
before spring.
Oct. 11. Still very cold.
Oct. 12. Ditto.
Oct. 13. Moderated and pleasent.
Oct. 14. Snowing hard been at it all day and
I have been with the negroes in Africa and the
natives of Australa and among the Indians of the
plains but of all the dirty divels I ever was with
the Ma Nuska can beat them two to one. They
take the hide of the rabbit and then boil him
guts and all * * * * thar clothes are never taken
of till they fall of or ruther rot of the wemen
all take' snuf and I have never seen one of them
wash her hands or face since I have been hear NO-TIL-NES PASSES IN HIS CHECKS.
209
so you can judge how thay look and still the men
wratch them like a cat would a mouse * * * *
Oct. 15. A pleasent day so I can go out without
an overcoat.    Three of the Ma Nuska dogs got in
a air hole and went to the dog heaven or h	
more likely and they are making as much fuse
about it as if it was three of theare young
ones.
Oct. 16. Clear and cold nothing to record patching
my old clothes.
Oct. 17. Bright cold day the Ma Nuska have just
killed a bear on the other side of the river you
would think h had broke loose if you heard
the infearnel noise thay make.
Oct. 18. Clear but cold went oat and killed rabbits
all the afternoon.
Oct. 19. Snowed gentley all day fell about three
inches.
Oct. 20. Had a veiset fron the Cheif's son a verey
good-looking man for a Ma Nuska he lives about
five milles up the river it is verey cold the natives
all dress in fur I think I can stand the cold better
than they can.
Oct. 21. Clear and cold.
Oct. 22. Thur is mourning in the camp No-til-nes
passed in his checks this morning him and two
others wear crossing the river at a place whear it is'
open and the raft capsized and he went under the
ice I dont think thay make hordly so much fuss as
0
1 2IO
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
Ill:; J
thay did over the three doga thay lost. It is not
quite so cold to-day.
Oct. 23. Snowed gentley all day.
Oct. 24. Pleasent for this place. Two Col Chins
came in from the headwTaters of the Chitanah to-day
one of them came to my hut and gave me a peace
of native copper it is about one inch thick with
rock atached to each side he says thar is mountins
of it whear he got it I hope thar is I will find out
how much thar is of it if I live.
Oct. 25. Clear but very cold my daley woark is to
get wood to burn and kill rabbits to eat thar is no
large game aurund here at preasent the natives say
thar will be plenty of dear by un by thay say thar
plenty of foxs but I have not seen a track so I dont
think they are verey plenty.
Oct. 26. Clear but verey cold the floor of my
cabin is frose two foot from the fire and I thought
I had made it almost air tight so you see I am in
no danger of melting with the heat. I saw the
Volcano smoking for the first time to-day it is the
mountin laid down on the chart as Mount Wrangle
it dont look more than twenty-five or thirtey milles
from here but the natives say it will take me three
days to go thar I cant get one of them to go near
it so I will have to go alone I sholl go as soon as
the river is safe.
Oct. 27. Clear cold day went up to the mouth
of the Chitanah it is about two miles above
the head of the canyon it lookes to be about the
BOH HE ATTEMPTS MOUNT WRANGEL.
211
same sise as the main river with a less rapid
current the natives say it is a good stream to
travel on no rocks or rapids on it I expect to go
up in February when the ice is good I cant get a
d one of the natives to show me the way to get
to the Volcano thay say if I go thar I will die thay
wont go within ten miles of it. As soon as the ice
is safe I shall try and get thar by myself.
Oct. 28. Snowing hard nothing worth talking
about the same thing over again every day.
Oct. 29. Snowed gentley all day the river has cut
a chanel in the ice about one hundred feet wide
and the current rushes through like a mill race the
Ma Nuska say it will be another moon before it
will be frozen so as to be safe to travel on.
Nov. 16. I have not writen aneything for some
time it was the soame thing over and over every
day. I made the atempt to get to the Volcano and
failed I got within about one mile of the crater
when one of my snow shoes broke and I came verey
near passing in my checks before I could get back
to the timber I froze several of my toes and my
gars you ought to see them thay would match a
goverment mules I dont think it is possible to
make the ascent in the wenter but I think it would
be easey in the summer I could not get aney of
the natives to go with me thay are all afraid to
go aney whear near it. I have been geting all the
information about the natives I could but thay are
verey  shy about teling  me  aney thing  thay are 212
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
ill
II   i
scaterd along the river from the Canyon for about
one hundred miles the houses from half a day to a
day's travel apart and then the Col Chines  are
scaterd along the river above thar is fifteen houses
scaterd along the river of the Ma Nuska as near as
I am able to learn and opinion judging from the
number of inhabtents in the houses I have been in
I dont think thar is too exced one hundred of the
Ma Nuska tribe men wemen and children thay get
martin and foxes from the Col China and a verey
little  powder witch  the   Col  China  get  on  the
Youcon and thar is onley one famley of Ma Nuska
on the Chitanah the Col China are scaterd along
the head waters and they go to Chitcat to trade
and I wish you would inform the proper athortys
that the traders at Chilcat are selling stricnyen to
the Col China thay are no more fit to have poisen
then a five year old child-    The Ma Nuska are
mostly armed with light double barrel guns or old
Hudson Bay flent locks thay are very good marksmen considring the guns they have and in case of
trouble with  them thar powder  would  soon  be
spent and they could not get aney except at New-
chuck or Chilcat and thay can't live away from
the  rivers one  hundred  white  men could clean
them out without much trouble animals would be
no account light boats would be the onley thing
that would do in the countrey it has not been so
cold this month so far as it was in Oct. the river
is still open eaghteen inches of snow on the level. REVOLUTION AND MURDER.
213
Nov. 28. This is a quire contry October was
verey cold November has been quit pleasent a man
could go around in his shirt sleaves and not feel
cold it has rained all day to-day it has settled the
snow so it is about a foot on a level before the
rain thar has not been wind enough to shake the
snow off the bushes since the first snow fell.
Oct. 29. Rained hard all day and is still at it I
did not make my house rain proof and I am about
drowend out.
Dec. 4. Pleasent I hant had a coat on for the last
four weeaks and the Ma Nuska have been haveing
a revulution after the fasion of thar white brothers
the old Cheif had got poor and being old and blind
he want able to fead the hungry divels that come
to sponge on him and so thay toke his throne and
gave it to another * * * it is looking bad for me
the Ma Nuska have killed three Col China and the
Ma Nuska are nearly scared out of wits thay just
brought me a report that the Col China have
murdered the store keeper that keeps the Co. store
on the Uycon somewhear near the mouth of the
Tinenah the Ma Nuska say it was Tinenah cuses
that done it but they are such d liars I dont
know wheather to beleave them ore not.
Dec. 5. Rained hard all day.
Dec. 6. Rain.
Dec. 7. Rain poured down all day water a foot
deep in my house it hase raised the river seven fut
I 214
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
the river dont look so much like freasing over as it
did two months ago.
Dec. 8. Clear and freasing a little the Ma Nuska
and the Col China are going to have a grand pow
wow about one hundred miles up the river I want
to go and see the plaver but the Ma Nuska say
the Col China will kill me and then the Americans
would come and kill them I shall go if I can.
Dec. 18. Clear and cold it remained pleasent till
the fifteenth when it turned cold and is geting
o o
colder every day I have no means of teling how
cold it is but I judge it has been from ten to
fifteen below zero for the last three days. Things
is looking bad the Col China have come to the
Ma Nuska frontier and say thay are going to
clean the Ma Nuska out a runner came in last
night from the front he made the hundred milles
in twenty-four hours the Tyon was at my cabin
when he came and he came rushing in as if the
divil was after him in less than an hour every
man and boy old enough to handle a gun wear
on the march up the river thay wouldnt let me
go thay swor thay would tie me up if I tried to
go the Tyon told me he did not think thar would
be aney fighting he thought it would all end in
talk but he promissed if thar was aney fighting
to send for me so I am left the onley man in
Taryel with all the wemen and children a fine
dirty lot thay are.
Dec. 19. Cold. 1
CESSATION OF HOSTILITIES.
215
Dec. 20. Cold.
Dec. 21. Ditto.
Dec. 22. Verey cold.
Dec. 23. Ditto.
Dec. 24. Not quite so cold.
Dec. 25. I wish you all a merey Christmass I had
rabbet for my diner insted of turkey the weather
has moderated and it is quit pleasent no news from
the seat of war.
Dec. 26. Pleasent.
Dec. 2 7. The river froze over.
Dec. 28. Pleasent.
Dec. 29. Pleasent.
Dec. 30. Pleasent.
Jan. 1, 1885. I wish you all a happey new
year it is quit pleasent weather hear somewhear
about zero but I do not fell it cold thar is not a
breath of wind thar has been no stormey weather
since the seventh of Dec. nor wind enough to stir
a leaf and the war is over it all ended in talk and
a big dance and I expect to start for the copper
mines the midle of the month the natives say the
ice will be good then I dont write much for the
simple reason that thar is nothing to write about.
Jan. 2. Cloudy but not cold.
Jan. 3. Light fall of snow about one inch.
Jan. 4. Snowed hard all day fell eaght inches on
the level but it is as light as down thar is not a
breath of wind and the treas and bushes are loded
with snow I have been haveing a little fun to breake 2l6
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
the monotoney of life at Tarrell the Ma Nuska have
got it into thar heads that I am a big medicen and
one of them came to my cabin earley yesterday to
get me to go and see his wife he said she was going
CD O O O
to die if 1 did not go and cure her I went with him
about three miles through the snow and found that
the most that ailed the slut was dirt * * * I
gave her eaght of Haynes piles and then made
them strip her clothes of and scrub her from head
to foot when they had got through scrubing her I
made a mustard plaster * * * * . *
* her husband has been to my cabin to-day he
says she is all right now he thinks me the boss
J CD
medicen man I want the doctor when he writes to
tell me if I treated the case properly.
Jan. 5. Clear and cold been patching my old
clothes I expect I will be without clothes by the
time I get back to Nuchuk.
Jan. 6. Verey cold this morning when I went to
get up I found my whisker froze fast too my pelow
and still I had slept warm and comfertable all night
I wish I had some means of telling how cold it is
and not a breath of wind.
Jan. 7. I had to roll out in the night to reef topsails the wind blowing a moderate gale from the
north it is the first wind we have had in two months
worth speaking of.
Jan. 8.' Not quit so cold I had a vesit from a Col
China to-day he told me thar was a hundred white
men on the Youcon somewhear near the. mouth of HE RAISES THE DEAD.
217
the Tanenah as near as I could make out he says
they have gone into camp thar I expect that
Sheglen found good digings thar and a porty
have gone in to be ready in when spring opens I
dont know what else would enduce white men to
winter thar.
Jan. 9. Light brease from the north with light
snow squalls not verey cold.
Jan. 10. Light snow squalls about zero I dont fell
the cold aney more then I did at Newchuck the
onley way I know it is so cold is if I toke my
mitens of too fix a snare to catch a rabbit the ends
of my fingers are froze in about five minuts.
Jan. 11. I had to go about four mils to-day to
see a sick young one the fools think I can raise the
dead.
*
*
*
*
Thare was an old woman in the house in the last
stage of consumption and the fools wanted me to
cure her I told them that the Big Tyon up aloft
said no that she must die and that I could not do
aneything for her.
Jan. 12. Cold.
Jan. 13. Cold. I
Jan. 14. Verey cold froze water three feet from
the fire I went yesterday to see how the Ma
Nuska preformed at a funral thay told me a young
woman had died and thay weare going to burey
her soon after I got thare one of the we men began
to chant a sort of tune in a low tone and preasently 218
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
all hands joined in and thay kept geting louder
and louder till I had to stuf my ears thay made
such a noise after a while I thought I would have
a look at the corpse I puled the cloth of her face
and while I was looking she opned her eyes she
want near as dead as thay had thought it apears
she must have had some sort of a fit aney way it
bursted up the fun she lookes to be as likeley to
live as aney of them when I left thay wear feeding
her the soup from a rabbit's gutes.
Jan. 15. Verey cold.
Jan. 16. The cold is instense five feet above the
fire the chemley is white weth frost.
Jan. 17.  Cold cold cold.
Jan. 18. Still verey cold it would be all most
imposable for troops to make a winter campaign
the cold is so intense thay wrould all frease to death.
Jan. 19. Not quite so cold I have got the rheumatism in my right arm and shoulder, so I can
hardley write.
Jan. 20. More moderate I can go out without
freasing.
Jan. 21. Quite mild about zero I shall start in a
few days for the copper contrey.
Jan. 22. Light snow squalls not verey cold.
Jan. 24. Quite mild light snow it has fell about
three inches in the last forty-eaght hours.
Jan.' 25. Pleasent not verey cold.
Jan. 26. Light squalls of wind from the north
not cold. THE VOLCANO IN ERUPTION.
219
Jan. 27. Warm wind from the south melting the
snow it seames od too be able to go out in my shirt
sleaves.
Jan. 2^.  Still thawing.
Jan. 29. Quit warm and pleasent the natives are
cursing the warm weather it weats thar fur boots.
Jan. 30. Beautifull winter weather light wind
from the south.
Jan. 31. Cloudy but warm and pleasent.
Feb. 1. Pleasent cloudy light wind from the
north.
Feb. 2. The weather is still mild and pleasant the
natives are scatring of from this place they squat
here till they have eat all thar dried fish and stole
nearley all my grub never hunted at all and now
thay are half starved serves them right I wish thay
weare more starved.
Feb. 3. A beautifull day not a cloud in the sky
I was treated to a sight to-day that I wish you
could have seen the volcano has been verey quite
(quiet) a good while but to-day it is sending out a
vast colum of smoke and hurling imense stones
hundreds of feet high in the air the mases it is
throwing up must be verey large to be seen here
it is at least thirty milles in a air line from here to
the mouth of the crater it has mde no loud reports
onley a sort of rumbling noise.
Feb. 4. A little colder but pleasent the Volcano
has stoped throwing stones ore makeing a noise
but is still sending out an imense cloud of smoke I
220
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
it is verey beautifull not a breath of wind and the
smoke ascends to a great hight in an imense colum
© ©
before spreading out.
Feb. 5. Cloudy and colder light wind from the
north the Ma Nuska have been promsing too start
for Nuchuk for the two weeaks and  thay hant
started yet thay havent  the  least ideah of the
value of time.
Feb. 6. Light snow about one inch thar was an
©
old native came to my cabin to-day and I pumped
him about that route too the lake he told me that
two days' travel up the river thar was a river that
headed in a large lake and one day's travel from
the lake thar was a river that went to salt water
but I think it must go into Cook's Inlet he says it
goes to Nuchuk but from the lookes of the country
I think its imposoble the onley way to find out is
to go and look the natives are such liars you cant
trust aney thing thay say.
Feb. 7. The natives have promised to start to-day
I am lookeing for them every menuit so I will seal
up the book.
P.S.—The natives are verey shy about telling a
white man aneything about the country ore about
themselves. What few Col China I have seen are
a much finer looking people then the Ma Nuska I
have been about fifty ore sixty miles up the river
and as far as I can see it is as bad as it is below.
The Canyon presents no obesticle to navegation at
a modrate stage of water but below and above the THE SUMMING UP.
221
river is uterley useless as a route to transport troops
ore suplies in aney quanty and thar is another route
from Chilcat that strikes the headwaters of the
Chitanah but from all I can learn it is as bad as
bad as Coper River the Col China pack through
to Chilcat and it takes them two months to make
the round trip.    The natives all live along the rivers
thay could not live aney great length of time back
in the mountins.    The countrey here is intierley
difrent from the coast it is a dry climat verey cold
in winter and verey hot in summer not a bad con trey
to live in if it want for the rascals that live in it
if the divil is the father of liars he has got a fine lot
©
of children up here and as for stealing I defy the
worald to produce a more expert lot of theives thay
have stole nearley all my grub thay broke in to my
cabin while I was away up the river and stole all
my tea and sugar and two sacks of flour and worst
of all nearly all my tobacco I have onley one sack
of flour left no tea or sugar I have been liveing on
o o
rabbet strat for the last month. I wish if you can
get it you would send me a small flag I would like
too have the honur of raiseing thev old Flag whar
© o
a white man has never been before at the Coper
mine.
KHHHH   JOHN BREMNER. 1 (      222     )
|1SB|M CHAPTER XI.   ^^^^^H
Waiting at Nuchuk in Prince William Sound—The Indians refuse
to move—We prepare to Winter there—The First Snow—Sport
at Nuchuk—The Ducks, Grouse, and Geese—The Schooner
arrives at last—Chenega and the Coast of the Kenai Peninsula—
A Gale—We reach Kodiak—Fearful Murder at our Supper-
table—A   Terrible   Passage   to   San   Francisco—Homewards
again.
" And now the storm blast came, and he
Was tyrannous and strong;
He struck with his o'ertaking wings,
And chased us South alone."
Nuchuk, Prince "William Sound, Alaska,
September 22d, 1886.
The last few weeks have been speut in short expeditions in the neighbourhood, partly for exploration
and partly to keep us supplied with ducks and
fresh salmon.
The schooner, our last chance of communicating
with the outer world until the following spring,
was expected to arrive here at Nuchuk, from the
Alaska Company's eastern headquarters at Kodiak,
between the 5th and 10th of September, with the
winter supply of goods for the trading post.
Having  now  nearly given up all hope of its I ATTEMPT TO LEAVE NUCHUK.
223
arrival, I have made an attempt to procure men
to take me by canoe to Kodiak in hopes of catching
the steamer St. Paul on her way to San Francisco.
It was therefore made known some days ago that
two sealskin canoes and four men, or if that was
At Nuchuk ; Gustia, once a Slave Boy.
not possible, one three-hatch canoe and men, were
required to take me in the direction of Kodiak as
far as was practicable, if only for a short way, and
that any price they demanded would be paid. This
evening the whole of the male inhabitants, together
I'm 224
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
'
with the Tyoon, were summoned to the store, and
the answer was then given by the Tyoon, through
Nicolai, that at present no one was in want of
money; also that there was no astronome to advise
them concerning the weather; that soon Cook's
Inlet would be- frozen up, and that they did not
wish to go by the outside passage.
The Alaskan Indians can never be counted on
with certainty to work for money until driven by
hunger to do so ; and when they have just returned
from a successful sea-otter hunt, as is now the
case, they will only go where the caprice of the
moment iuclines them. Last year they omitted to
dry sufficient salmon to last the winter, but this
winter the trader has taken care that they have
plenty.
Nuchuk, September 2gth.
The Swedes, the two Carlsens, are preparing to
return to their log cabin on Kaiak Island, in place
of revisiting once more for the first time in ten
years their home in Sweden, which they will now
never be able to do, they say, and their winter will
be passed as usual in sea-otter hunting.
I am preparing for a winter journey round
Prince William Sound. I have bought a three-hole
bidarky, and made  some deerskin sleeping-bags, PREPARING TO WINTER.
225
and succeeded in engaging one man. Most of
the others are away on the islands trapping.
With the prospect of five months winter I have
had a long coat of squirrel skins made from
two native parkas or sleeveless skin coats, which
slip on over the head.
Nuchuk, October 2d.
Flocks of wild geese have
been   passing   during   the
whole of the middle part
of the day, without a break,
flying southwards, band after
band, in long rows.
Nuchuk, October gth.
There has been snow on
the   mountains   for   some
days.    Last night the first
snow fell at the settlement.
T -.       § .-i Sett-Shoo, a Boy of Oodiak.
I was camped out some miles Dressed thus, he crossed the
t l •        ,1        Pass, amid snow and ice, without
away,   and  awoke   in   the requiring any other clo4es>
morning to find everything
hidden under a foot of snow outside the tent.
We have been living on bear and wild-goat
meat brought by the Indians from 'Jjateekluk or
Kaneetluk villages in the sound, and on red salmon
I
ill 1
!
226
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
and ducks* I shot fourteen of the latter this
morning, including mallard and blue-wing teal,
with an old muzzle-loading trade gun, my own
being still with the Times expedition.
We pso shoot blue grouse occasionally in the
woods; these birds are nearly always discovered
perched on the fir-trees, and are difficult to find;
also marmots near the mountain tops, from which
there is a magnificent view of the sound. We also
catch trout in a small pond near the village.
The wild geese would be easy to kill with a
good gun, as they abound in the bay, and one can
usually get a shot at thirty yards distance when
one of the flocks alights on the hillside to feed.
Nuchuk, October 16th, 1886.
This morning we had just finished breakfast at
daylight off our usual salt salmon and porridge,
when I heard a shouting of " Sail, oh ! |
These words had been shouted on so mauy:
previous occasions during the past eight weeks—
sometimes at a tree floating with the tide, the
bare projecting branches of which resembled masts;
sometimes in jest, or at times at the fancied
appearance of a sail on the horizon—that we took SAIL, OH !
227
no notice. At last its loudness and persistence
made us rush out. It was indeed the schooner.
She was entering the bay in a thick fog—the first
we have seen here. The two young Swedes for
Kaiak are on board, and will just have time to get
there by canoe before the Copper Eiver freezes.
On Board the  Schooner Kodiak,  Chenega,
Prince William Sound, October 20th, 1886.
The   schooner   had  been   delayed   during   the
ifem^i
ii-lK*
«
jt\
mz&sJgfc
**V~*""\
M.
Knight's Island, from Five Miles North of Chenega, looking East.
1   ■
ill
summer partly by calms, and partly on account of
an opposition company which has been started at
Kodiak. Hence also our visit to Chenega, the
western of the three Indian villages in Prince
William Sound, in order to land a Creole trader to
buy up all the sea-lion skins he can get, lest the
competing party should obtain them.
The village itself lies under a steep wooded bluff. 228
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
We should never have found it had not a guide
been brought from Nuchuk. This part of Prince
William Sound consists of many steep mountainous
islands—far more than are marked in the Russian
chart, which is the only one in existence and which
delineates groups of islands as one island.    Their
Part of the Kenai Peninsula from Chenega.
southern sides are wooded and timbered, the
northern sides being bare everywhere. Snow lies
on the mountains down to the water's edge. In
front of Chenega. stretcies a broad bay covered with
small icebergs, and in wjich several whales are at this
moment spouting. Close at hand several glaciers
•descend into the sea from the low flat snowfields CHENEGA.
229
visible on the high plateau of the mysterious Kenai
Peninsula.
I recognise many of the Chenega Indians as
having lately been over at Nuchuk trading.
Our guide will return in a skin canoe across
the sound. We are just off for Kodiak, and thence
for California, leaving winter behind us.
St. Paul, Kodiak Island, Alaska,
October 23d, 1886.
We have just reached this place after a severe
passage. After getting clear of the islands we
coasted along the south side of the Kenai Penin-
sula, obtaining glimpses through the clouds of
several of the glaciers, which reach the ocean at
five or six points of this rugged coast. Next day
it blew a strong gale from the north-east—
I Never did I like molestation view,
Upon th' enchafed flood."
And although it was a fair wind for us, we had
to lie hove to under close-reefed jib and close-reefed
mainsail all that night, reaching this village, which
O 7 O CD    '
is a comparatively civilised place, yesterday. It
boasts a Eussian church, and a well-to-do Creole
and Indian population, living in substantial wooden
houses, not  huts,  as  elsewhere.     It  boasts  also 2;o
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
numerous large outhouses and stores of the Alaska
Company, a schoolmaster, Customs (Ivan Petroff)
and Signal Service Officers, with other white men.
The Company's two steamers have left; we follow
in the schooner on the 2d of November. All the
vessels ret^n here in April, and summer trade
and hunting recommences then.
We were welcomed by Mr. B. G. M'Intyre, the
general agent of this part (the eastern) of the
Alaska Company's important business, not including the Fur Seal Islands. He accompanies
us to San Francisco, and appears to' be exceedingly
popular with every one, for I have heard nothing of
him except in praise. Meanwhile the schooner is
to fetch a load of wood, and then we cross the
Pacific.
At this time of year strong winds must be
expected, but the}?' are generally westerly—fair
winds for us. The little schooner also is well-
found, and with the Carlsons to help, will be well
manned. The natives here still talk of the visit
of Sir Thomas Hesketh's yacht, the Paladine,
some years ago, and the ball that was given. I
have to giipe a small one to-night. MURDERED AT TABLE.
231
St. Paul, Kodiak Island, Alaska,
November 3d, 1886.
The night before last I was the eye-witness to
a shocking murder—none other than that of the
general agent, whose corpse is on board. We start
at noon for California, nearly two thousand miles
distant.
We were seated at supper at six o'clock in the
evening—M'Intyre at the head of the table, and
Woche, a storekeeper, at the foot. Ivan Petroff
was by my side. The meal was nearly over, and
M'Intyre had half-turned to get up from his chair,
when a terrible explosion suddenly occurred, filling
the room with smoke and covering the table with
fragments of plates and glasses.
M'Intyre never moved, for he was killed stone-
dead in a moment. Woche fell under the table,
and then rushed out streaming with blood in
torrents, for he was shot through the lower part
of the head. The double glass window was
smashed to atoms, for a cowardly fellow had fired
through it, from just outside, with a spreading
charge of slugs, presumably aiming at M'Intyre,
who received the main part of it in his back.
Meantime the murderer who had thus shot into 232
SHORES AND ALPS OF ALASKA.
'
a group of unarmed and unsuspecting persons had
time to escape.
I succeeded in stopping the bleeding from
Woche's wounds, every one appearing paralysed!
The suspected man, Peter Anderson, a Cossack
of the Don, cannot be found. He had, we found,
attempted to fire his sloop, lying at anchor near the
wharf; and had refused employment at cod-fishing,
in order, as he said, to be present at the departure
of the schooner. He had also been Seen loitering
with a gun behind the house. He owed money to
M'Intyre, who had twice fitted him out for sea-otter
hunting, but both times he was unsuccessful.
We have been scouring the woods with rifles,
but the natives are frightened to death. Not a
light can be seen in any house after dark for fear
of its being shot into by this madman, who is still
at large if he has not committed suicide. Nor can
any of them be got to stir out at night, or to keep
watch like sentries over the sloop, in case he should
return, unless a wlifce man is with them.
On Board the Schooner Kodiak,
San Francisco Harbour, November 16th, 1886.
We arrived last night afterlthe most uncomfort-
able twelve days I ever endured.    For two nights HOMEWARD BOUND.
233
we lay hove to in fearful gales, while during the
latter part of the voyage a terrible stench in the
cabin, probably from bilge water and the salt
salmon in the hold, forced me to live in the forecastle with the three sailors, who were exceedingly
attentive. This made up to some extent for the
behaviour of the captain, who was mad drunk,
and abusive of England, and insulting to every
one. He took it into his head at last that I had
gone to the forecastle to obtain from the sailors
grounds of complaint against him.
I cannot close this journal without acknowledging the politeness of the Alaska Commercial
Company, and the hospitality received through
their employes at Nuchuk and Kodiak.
i
San Francisco, November 30th, 1886.
The little 70-ton schooner W. Sparkes has just
arrived from Alaska, having left Kodiak on the
9th. The murderer has not been'found. I leave
to-morrow for England. (    234   )
APPENDIX.
The Fur Trade of Alaska—Fur-seals—Hair-seals—Sea-Lions—'
Sea-otters — Prospects of the Fur Trade a Century ago
as estimated by Cook—The Varieties of Foxes—Black and
Brown Bears—Their Pursuit—The Lynx, Polar Bear, Marten,
Cariboo, Moose, Sheep, and Goat—Prince William Sound and
its Indians—A Description of Cook's Inlet and its Shores—
The Fur-trading Stores—The Volcanoes—Cape Douglas—A
Description of "p.e Alaskan Peninsula, its Settlements, Game,
and Mountains—Unexplored Alaska—Future Sporting Expeditions—A Cllfigamute Vocabulary.
The Alaskan Fur Trade.
From 1870 to 1880 the furs bought by traders from natives
were as follows :—
40,283 sea-otter @
19,000 land-otter @
41,217 beaver @   .
6992 black fox @ .
19,210 cross fox @
82,919 red fox @ .
7508 blue fox @   .
11,491 white fox (a),
819 black bear @ .
5207 broiipi bear @
71,213 mink @
§1,609 marten @ .
50,322 musk rat @
6312 lynx @
421 wolf (a), .
1
c.
.   60
0
each
2
50
2
5°
15
0
2
50
I
0
2
0
I
0
S|   3
0
1
5°
0
20
2
0
0
5
2
0
1
5° THE FUR TRADE.
;JO
The Alaska Commercial Company have the sole right of
killing fur-seal, which are almost entirely confined to the
two small islands of Prybilof, lying north of the Aleutian
chain of islands. The chief season is in May. The
natives may also kill fur-seals. The hair-seal and sea-
lion skins are chiefly used in making the skin canoes.
The sea-otters, however, are still the chief objects of pursuit. Their skins have varied in value from ten dollars
in the time of the Eussians up to two hundred dollars.
Their pursuit by the Indians with bows and arrows in
the skin canoes, and the exhaustion of the animal by not
allowing it time to breathe, and its death, have been
fully described by Mr. Elliott in his account of the Sea
Islands, and by Ivan Petroff, who was seated next me
during the fearful murder at our supper-table of the
general agent of the Alaska Commercial Company, in
his report upon Alaska (U.S. ioth Census, 1880).
The value of a good sea-otter skin is now something
under a hundred dollars. They are becoming scarcer.
A century ago Cook wrote with regard to the natives:—
" I will be bold to say the Eussians have never been
amongst them, for if that had been the case we should
hardly have found them clothed in such valuable skins
as those of sea-otters. There is not the least doubt that
a very beneficial fur-trade might be carried on with the
inhabitants of this vast coast. But unless a northern
passage could be found practicable it seems rather too
remote for Great Britain to receive any emolument from
it." He adds that I intercourse with foreigners would
increase their wants by introducing them to an acquaintance with new luxuries, and in order to be able to procure
these they would be more assiduous in procuring skins."
How fully this has been verified 1 236
THE BEARS OF ALASKA.
Black or silver and cross foxes are not confined to any
particular district, and are trapped everywhere in small
numbers, but chiefly in the country of the Chilcats, and
the upper part of jphe Copper Eiver, and the Kenai
Peninsula. A trader will pay as much as fifty dollars
for a good skin.
f|pie white and the blue Arctic foxes are more plentiful
in the north.    The red fox is "common everywhere.
The brown bear of Alaska (ursus Richardsoiiii) seems
to giefer an open s^ftmpy country to the timber. His
northern limit is about p7° N. Ivan Petroff describes the
brown bear as " the great road-maker of Alaska." His
tracks line the banks of the stream. Their skins are
commercially of no value except when killed in winter.
During summer they frequent the salmon rivers in
immense numbers. They are rarely hunted. John
Ingster of Winnipeg, who spent two years on Sanak
Island hunting sea-otters, and others, have informed me
that they have seen over twenty together near the
mouths of rivers during Hie run of the salmon. The
Indians assert that bears swarm at Lake Nushegak, while
Petroff includes the country between that lake and the
lower Kuskoquim Eiver. Sthey are undoubtedly very
numerous on the island of Unimak or Oonimak, and on
the Alaskan Peninsula. Kodiak Island is full of them.
Cook's Inlet abounds with bear of the largest size, where,
says Petroff, " on the steep sides of the volcanic range
on the west coast brown bear can be seen 9n herds of
twenty or thirty; their skins are not valuable, and owing
to this fact, and to the liurcc disposition of the animals,
they are'not commonly hunted." The black bear is confined to the timber on the mainland and on a few of the
huge islands in Prince William Sound.    Near the vol- <o° w
238
THE GAME COUNTRY.
canoes game is particularly abundant, for no Alaskan
Indian will approach a volcano, and the wild animals
instinctively congregate there.
From one end of the Alaskan Peninsula to the other
lie well-beaten tracks of the reindeer. Bears follow in
their trailsgwhenever they congregate in large numbers.
The bears have a habit when wounded of attacking their
assailant, which is unfortunate for the bad shot. A
Winchester repeating rifle is commonly used. " See him
come! | calmly ejaculated one of the traders who had
fallen in (or out) with bruin near Katmai, and whose
magazine was still half full; | he's so ballasted up on
both sides with lead that he can't fall over." A rifle,
however, of more destructive power and of larger calibre
than a Winchester is desirable—one throwing a bullet
that will reach and paralyse the great nerve-centres when
the enemy is hit anywhere in the fore-part of the body.
The lynx is found in the Kenai Peninsula and St. Elias
Alps. The Polar bear is only found on the Arctic Coast.
The marten or sable (mustela Americana) is trapped on
the Alps of the Copper Eiver and Prince William Sound.
Eeindeer or cariboo are very plentiful on the Alaskan
Peninsula and in Cook's Inlet, as well as in the far
north. Moose are found on the Kenai Peninsula, and in
the interior. Sheep are numerous in Cook's Inlet, and
goats in Prince William Sound.
Our food while we were at Nuchuk in the sound
consisted of wild ducks and geese, and of salmon and
wild goat, and bear meat brought occasionally by the
Indians. But while Prince William Sound is comparatively deficient in large game, Cook's Inlet abounds with
it. Prom St. Elias to Chugach or Prince William Sound
(where are three villages), the people only number 600. COOK'S INLET.
239
Seal meat and mountain goat are eaten in equal proportion with salmon. The Chugamutes are Christians,
and have built a small Eussian church at Nuchuk,
to which they contribute a proportion of sea-otter
skins.
At the head of Prince William Sound is a portage of
a day's travel to Cook's Inlet, which was crossed by Petroff,
and where he saw moose in May. Two glaciers are crossed
on the way.
In Prince William Sound Vancouver's parties (1794)
found some Indians I who had come immediately from
Groofgincloof or Cook's Inlet, and that they with their
canoes had crossed the isthmus overland that separates this
sound, from Tiornagain Arm"
Cook's Inlet (discovered by Captain Cook), which has
been called Summerland by the traders, from the constant
fine weather during the summer, is inhabited by 800
natives and a few half-breeds, relics of the old Eussian
American Company, who fish exclusively from May
to September. The east side is formed by the Kenai
Peninsula.
In 1850 the Keknu Eiver was ascended by Lt.
Doroshin, and in 1879 by Ivan Petroff up to the Skilloch
village of Kenaitze Indians, who kill a few beaver in the
lakes. He informed me they were great travellers, and
that the women carried packs. At the mouth of the
Keknu Eiver is a school and a salmon cannery of the
Cutting Packing Company, and the fur post of Fort
Kenai. Some miles south is the Kassiloff Eiver salmon
fishery. Near the end of the Peninsula of Kenai are
the two fur posts and stores of Saldovy and English
Bay. The west shore of the peninsula is flat and low,
but the east coast is rocky and indented with bays, in ■M
240
THE VOLCANOES.
I
I!
one of which (Eesurrection Bay) an American hunter has
built a log-house, and resides.
The mountains rise to a height of 6000 feet, and are
covered with low flat glaciers and snow-fields. Turn-
again Arm, where the portage from Prince William Sound
ends, is bordered by high mountains, reaching 7000 feet
on the north side near the estuary of the Knik Eiver,
where are situated some Tinnat Indian villages. The
winter post of the Alaska Commercial Company is. in
the Knik Inlet, where in 1885 the storekeeper Holt was
shot by an Indian. The numbers of mosquitoes in summer
cause the store to be removed at that season to an island
in the estuary of the river.
Vancouver says, in regard to some Indians of Cook's
Inlet:—" I should be wanting in justice to our Indian passengers, were I to omit stating their docility and respectful
behaviour, and the real satisfaction and happiness they
exhibited on being given to understand that we were
again in perfect secur|ly."
On the west shore of Cook's Inlet is the A. C. C. post
of Tyonik. The mountains are wooded up to 1000 feet.
To the south lie Burnt Mountain Volcano, and next to it
Iliamna Volcano (12,060 feet), on the shore of which
Mr. Petroff once landed, but found the ascent too steep
to attempt, even as far as the crater, which is below the
summit.
Vancouver noted Mount Ilyamna:—| In the middle
appeared the volcano, near the summit of which, from
two distinct craters on its south-eastern side, were emitted
large volumes of whitish smoke, unless, as was supposed
by some, it was vapour arf|ing from hot springs in that
neighbourhood." He calls St. Augustin "a very remarkable island." THE ALEUTIAN ISLANDS.
241
Some miles south a portage leads from the sea to the
large Ilyamna Lake, where there is a store, kept by a
half-breed. Opposite lies Augustin Island in active eruption. At the entrance to Cook's Inlet the tides run with
great violence.
Cook discovered Cook's Inlet, and it obtained his
name. He named the boldest cape in Alaska Cape
Douglas, after the then Canon of Windsor—" a very lofty
promontory, whose elevated summit, forming two exceedingly high mountains, was seen above the clouds."
From this point to the extremity of the Alaskan Peninsula the shores are rocky and sparsely inhabited. At
intervals of about sixty miles are situated the A. C. C.
posts of Douglas, Katmai, Wrangel, Sitkoom, Matrofan,
Belkoffsky, and Majovy. The great cod-banks on the
coast are unworked. From Cape Douglas westward
timber is confined to the interior, and near Wrangel all
timber ceases. Belkoffsky is a large village of sea-otter
hunters, chiefly Scandinavians. The volcano of'Pavloff
was in very active eruption in August 1886. Majovy is
at the extreme end of the peninsula, near which the
Indian or Aleut village of Morshevoi holds a hundred
dissolute inhabitants, who, according to Petroff, have not
even the energy or cleanliness to make use of some hot
springs half a mile distant. The groups of islands opposite Belkoffsky are the resort of sea-o£ters, and contain
settlements of white hunters at Unga, G-usina, Simi-
nosky (in the Shumagin group), and Popoff, where
M'Collam & Co. have a cod-fishery. Unimak is the
first of the Aleutian Islands. It is bare and rocky,
and the volcanoes on it are active—Mount Shishaldin
(9000 feet) and Mount Progomny (5000 feet). Since
the Eussian massacre a hundred years ago, the natives
Q
lm- mwm-iua
242
A FRESH FIELD OF EXPLORATION
have held superstitions with regard to it, and it has
been totally uninhabited. It is said to swarm with the
common red fox and a species of wolf. Bear are very
numerous on it, and it is the only Aleutian island frequented by reindeer or cariboo, which are able to pass
the narrow straits which divide it from the mainland.
Akutan is the next Aleutian island; then comes
Unalaska, with a large settlement of whites. Two hundred miles to the north lie the two fur-seal islands, St.
George and St. Paul, while the wind-swept chain of the
Aleutians stretches out to Asia. The north side of the
Peninsula of Alaska is well-nigh uninhabited, and is the
resort of walrus. The mountains rise in groups from five to
eight thousand feet. The glaciers are all high up, and the
numerous portages lead across flat swampy plains between
Bering Sea and the North Pacific. Kodiak, the largest
island, p separated from the peninsula by Shelikoff
Straits, and boasts the white settlement of St. Paul,
besides several half-breed and Indian villages, and the
salmon-fishery of Karluk.
The Alaskan Peninsula and Cook's Inlet are undoubtedly great game countries. The fleet of trading
schooners and sealing steamers for Unalaska and Kodiak
leave Sal Francisco early in March. The country to
the west of Cook's Inlet is entirely unexplored, but
Indian reporfjrepresents it as a land of lakes and of high
mountains.
An expedition probably .unequalled for its novel
scenery and for sport with bear, cariboo, and ptarmigan,
would consist in coasting in a bidarky from Katmai to
TJnga, where there is constant communication by trading
schooners, while a field quite as attractive is offered by
the west coast of Cook's Inlet and by the volcanic region EXPERT TRIBES.
243
near it. The only drawback is the impracticable nature of
the natives, half-breed and Indian, and the necessity of the
party being constituted in such a way as to be independent of their aid.* The natives of the head of Cook's
Inlet, however, unlike the inhabitants of the Alaskan
shore-line, are of the Athabascan or Inland tribes of
North American Indians, and expert as hunters, travellers
and mountaineers, inhabiting also part of the Kenai
Peninsula and trading with the interior. It is to be
hoped that sopn regular communication will be established between Sitka and Kodiak, two days' steaming,
while at present the voyage from San Francisco to the
latter place takes nearly a fortnight.
* See the FortnighMy Review for March 1887, "A Fresh Field for the
Sportsman." i!
mm
A VOCABULAEY
OF USEFUL WORDS IN THE LANGUAGE OF THE CHUGAMUTES
ORNATIVES OF PRINCE WILLIAM SOUND.
Syllables in italics pronounced gutturally.
One, atoojuk.
Two, ah-tlak.
Three, ping-i-euk.
Four, sctar-mik.
Five, tar-tlee-mik.
Six, ah-cooin-dlin.
Seven, mar-tl-homin.
Eight, ee-gloo-glin.
One dollar, tlar-heema-nageet.
Twenty-five cents, ageet-stur-tuk.
Fifty cents, dingai-uk-coop-loogoo.
Much money, amlik-toot-ageet.
How much, cow-ouchin.
Too much, amZacA-pigacA-toot.
Too little, eekow-pagac^-toot.
A little money, eek-owdoot-ageet.
Out, tlar-me.
In, eeloom-e.
To-day, agoch-nach-puch.
To-morrow, oo-norgo.
Day after to-morrow, ya-teego.
After, ) 1 ,
I } takoo.
Later, )
Go back, ootacft-terj.
What is the name ? narma-ut-krur.
Never mind, tchan-ee-dok.
Come, ti-ee-hoot.
Go, agwar.
Eat, pee-doo-ah.
Drink, umm-ah.
Sleep, shah-gah.
Give me, too-neeg-nah.
Flowing tide, eel-ah-loo-go.
Ebbing tide*, eel-eeg-loo-go.
Good, ash-ek-dok.
Bad, ash-ee-dok.
Long, tak-oke.
Short, neneedok.
Hungry, kieech-ktwar.
Slow, ishow-la-marsuk.
Quick, tschoo-gar.
Thirsty, muk-sooc/^-ktwa.
Bear, loklok.
Wild goat, soo-park.
Mink, eel-gwark.
Sea-otter, eegum-ark.
Hair-seal, kai-ark.
Fur-seal, ah-tuk.
Sea-lion, wee-na.
Fox, ko-gwee-ak.
Deer, hunnai-ak.
Duck, oomooshuk.
Goose, tem-oo-yak.
Grouse, ung-ai-ik.
Fish, a/mach-too.
Man, schook.
Woman, ah-gun-uk.
Boy, tar-new-hungwar-shuk.
Girl, karnee-klungwar-shuk.
Tree, nego-gwar-tak.
Spear, ho-kk.
Boat, yalik.
River, gweek.
Sea, ee-marcA.-peek.
Matches, speetch-kee.
Bread, kleba.
Flour, mooka.
Meat, kmook.
Sugar, sarka.
Tea, tchai.
Tent, palatkuk.
Bed, ash-le-uk.
Fire, knuk. ■ 1^1 indei- ^^IH|H^B=
■         1'       W '
Adams, U.S.S.. 54, 55, 56
r	
Calgary, 3
Akutan, 242
Campaigner with General Gordon, 17
Alagnuk, 171
Canadian Pacific Railway, 1
Alaska  Commercial Company,  52>
Canons of the Thompson and the
54, 127, 131, 140, 194, 197. 198,
Fraser, 19
222, 230, 232, 235
Cape Douglas, 241
Alaskan Peninsula, 242
Cape Phipps, 123
Albert Canon, 14
Cape St. Elias, 142, 143
Alps of Alaska, 48-50
Cape Suckling, 140, 141, 150
Andersons, the, 52, 144, 150, 152
Cape Whitshed, 169, 170, 172
Anderson, Peter, the murderer, 232
Cariboo, 238, 242
Ascending Mount St. Elias,  101-
Cariboo Mines, 17
1                          104
Carlsen, Louis, 52, 224, 230
Ballow, Dr., 52
Carlsen, Olaf, 53, 145, 224, 230
Barometrical measurements, 84,103,
Carlsens, the, 224, 230
104, 112, 113
Cascade Mountain, 9
Beardslee Island, 38
Castani, Lake, 89
Bear Hunter, 67, 127, 129
Castle Mountain, 9
Bears, 34, 104,  114, 149, 150, 151,
Cat-fish, 41, 42
164, 165, 179, 196, 204,225,234,
Cathedral Mountain, 9, 10
236,237, 238, 242
Cattle country of British Columbia,
Bears in British Columbia, 24
17
Bears  in the   Canadian  National
Cattle country of Canada, 3
Park, 8
Chenega, 227, 228, 229
Bear tracks, 68, 71, 72, 76, 'J'J, 80,
Chichagoff I., 47
96
Chief of the Copper Indians, 206,
Beaver, 205
214
Beaver Canon, 12
Chief of the Yakatats, 54> 55» 56,
Beechey, 75
124, 125
Berries, 52, 71, 74, 125, 197
Chilcat and Chilcoot, 36, 161
Behms Canal, 30
Chinamen, 16
Belcher, 1:05
Chinese in British Columbia, 23
Belkoffsky, 148, 153, 241
Chitanah River, 210, 212
Bering, 105
Coast Survey, 48-50, 75? 106, 111
Bidarkies, 185, 186, 187
Cod-banks unworked, 241
Big Bend, n
Col Chins, 210, 212-214
Blacktail, 42
Columbia River, 11
Blacktail deer on Vancouver Island,
Controller's Bay, 162
24
Copper River Indians, 8^, 163, 167-
Boots worn out, 99
171, 200-221
Boundary-line, 64
Copper River, 227
Bremner, John, 200-221
Cook, 105, 143, 162, 194, 198, 199,
British Columbia, growth of, 25
235, 239, 241
Buffalo bones, 3
Cook's Inlet, 224
Bursting of a river, 95, 113, 114     e
Cross Sound, 47 I
<mmn-mmmm
246
INDEX.
DALTON, 46, 69, 114,  119, 129, I30
Davidson Glacier, 36
Davidson, Prof., 200
Death of M'Intyre, 231, 232
Deaths of Indians, 130,   133, 209,
210
Departure from Victoria, 19
Devil's Head, 5
Devil's Lake, 6, 7
Dixon Entrance, 26, 29
Dog-fish, 41, 42, 146
Dogs, Indian, 128, 148^
Donald, 12
Doroshin, Lt., 239
Douglas, 241
Ducks, 226
Duke of CSrence Straits, 30
Dumbough, Lieut.. 66
Eagle Glacier, 36
Eagle Pass, 2, 15, 16
Elk on Vancouver Island, 24
Klliot, 235
English Bay, 239
Esquimault, 23
Fairweather Ground, 66
Farwell, 14
Fee SpjEpigs, 78
Fishing at Sitka, 40, 41, 42
Fishing in the Bow, 4
Fishing in The Devil's Lake, 7
Fording rivers, J3, 74, 84
Forest fires, 16, 42
Fort Macleod, 3
Fort Simpson, 29
Fort Tongass, 29 ,
Fort Wrangel, 30
Foxes, 234, 236, 237, 242
Fraser River, 18, 19
Furs, 201, 234, 235-239
Fur-trade of Alaska, 234, 235-239
Gales, 229, 232, 233
Game on Vancouveimsland, 24
Geese, 195, 196, 225, 226
Glacial measurements, 38
Glaciers, extent of, 62, 64, 110, nr,
38.
Glaciers of the Copper River, 169-
171
Goat Peak, 9
Goats, 89, 196, 225
Gold in British Columbia, 12
Gold-mining; 34, 35, 55
Gold Range, 15, 16
Golden City, 11
Great Agassiz Glacier, 56, 84, 122,
122
Great Guyot Glacier, 75, 7S, -8o,
in, 138
Great   Tyndall  Glacier,  98,    101,
102, 110
Griffin Lake, 17
Grouse, 226
Gusina, 241
Halibut hook, 196
Harrisburg, 34, 35, 46
Hats, 60, 61
Hawkins Island, 172-177
Heights, table of, 112, 113
Hesketh, Sir T., 230
Highest timber bridge in the world,
12
Hinchinbrook Island, 177, 179-227
Holt, murder of George, 131, 240
Hot springs, 8, 9
Howkan, 30
Humming-bird, 81
Hyamna Lake, 241
Hydahs, 23
Ice axes, 70
Icy Bay, 56, 64, 65, 72, 134, 137
Icy Cape, 79, 137, 138, 139
Idaho, s.s., 44
Illecillewaet River, 13, 14
Indian carvings, 21
Indians, drunken, 53, 166
Indian houses, 156, 157
Indian wares, 40
Indian races, 194, 195, 243
Indians of Queen Charlotte Islands,
23
Indians of Vancouver Island, 23
Indians, threatening, 53
Ingster, John, 236
Inland passage, 26
Islands of Prince William Sound, 228
Italian Geographical Society, 89
John Bremner, 200-221
Jones River, 75, 79, 81, 82
July 4th at Sitka, 43, 63
Juneau City, 34, 35, 46
Kaiak Island, 52, 54, 127,140, 142-
162
Kamleyga, 186 lj
Kamloops Lake, 18
Kassiloff River, 239
Katmai, 238, 241-243
Keknu River, 239
Kenai, 179, 228, 229, 239, 243
Kersunk, 46, 92
Kicking Horse Pass, 10, 11
Klok-lShegees, 1591
Knight's Island, 227 INDEX.
247
2 "7 *J
33
Knik River, 131, 240
Kodiak, 54, 155, 229-232, 242
Kodiak, schooner, 227—230, 232,
Kruzoff I., 42
Kuskoquim River, 236
Lakes, Glacier, 89, 97, 98
La Perouse, 105, 140
Leases of cattle lands, 4
Length of transit by Canadian Pacific Railway, 2
Libbey, Prof. W., 20, 46, 63, 69,
70, 81, 90, 92, 93, 96, 97, 114,
126, 129, 130
Loops of the Canadian Pacific Railway, 14
Loring, 30
Lynn's Canal, 36
Lynx, 234, 238
Lvtton, 18
Malaspina Plateau, 56, 111
Ma-Nuska, 202, 221
Masks, 57, 60
Matrofan, 241
Majovy, 241
MTntyre, B. G., 230, 231, 232
Medicine hat, 3
Medicine man, 59? I28, 160,  129-
I33> l65> 169
Metlakatla, 29
Middleton Island, 187
Moose, 202, 204, 238, 239
Moose-jaw, 3
Moraines, 77, 78, 81, 84, 85, 111
Morshevoi, 241
Mountain goats, 29, 33
Montague Island, 193
Mount Begbie, 14
Mount Carrol, 12
Mount Cook, 50, 51, 99
Mountain Creek, 12
Mount Crillon, 38
Mount Edgcumbe, 39, 42
Mount Fairweather, 38, 47, 48, 50
Mount Hector, 9
Mount Hermit, 12
Mount Ilyamna, 240
Mount La Perouse, 38
Mount Lefroy, 9
Mount Malaspina, 51
Mount Progomny, 241
Mount Shishaldin, 241
Mount Sir Donald, 13
Mount Stephen, 9
Mount St. Augustin, 240, 241
Mount St. Elias, ii. v., 49, 50, 56,
63, 102, 105-109, 122
Mount Vancouver, 50, 51
Mount Wrangel, 106, 210-212, 219
Mountain Goats, 24
Muir's Glacier, 37, 38
Murder of M'Intyre, 231, 232
Murders, 55, 131, 231, 232, 240
Nanaimo, 29
Nanaimo Mines, 20
Nasty customs, 149, 157, I59> 2°8
Native dances, 182-185
New York Times Expedition, 20, 37,
T43>44      ■
Nicholls, Commander, 46, 63, 66
Norwegians, 151
Nuchuk, 179-227
Ooean Cape, 48, 123
Oodiak, 170, 171, 195, 225
Pacific Coast Navigation Com
pany, 26
Paladine, yacht, 230
Parka, 225
Pavloff, 241
Peril Straits, 39
Petroff,  Ivan,   150,   195,  230, 231,
235, 236, 239
Pinta, U.S.S., 36, 46, 48, 51, 56,
62-127
Point Martin, 162-166, 169
Polar Bear, 238
Port Etches, 180
Port Hammond, 19
Prairies of Canada, 3
Pribiloff Island, 242
Prince  William   Sound,
187,193, 227, 228
Ptarmigan, 188
Punishing Indians, 46
Queen Charlotte Sound,
Quicksands, *]6, 83, 114
Rabbits, 212
Reindeer or Cariboo, 17
Resources of British Columbia, 25
Revelstoke, 14
Revilla Gigedo Island, 30
Rogers Pass over the Selkirks, 2,
n-13
Royal Geographical Society, 69, 139
Russian Company, 39
Russian Bath, 192, 193
Russian   church at  Nuchuk,  180,
184, 185
Sable, 234, 238
Saldovy, 239 j
Salmon, 167,175, 176, 177, 188-192,
195, 196, 202, 239
Salmon-fishing, 41, 189
54,   179,
26 ■-iwwwim j
248
INDEX.
Salmon on Vancouver Island, 24
Sanak, 236
Scenery, Alaskan, 178, 179
Scenery at Yakatat, 48
Schwatka, Lieut., 20, 45, 7°> 73> 75,
79, 93, 101, 103, 104, 130, 200
Scientific instruments, 69, 99, 10c,
116, 126
Sea-birds, 52
Sea-lions, 195
Seals, 68, 71, 72, 135, 155, 195, 234,
155, 201, 234, 235
Z6b.
Sealskins,
Sea-otters, 135, 136, 152-155, 158,
185, 197, 198, 234, 235, 241 _
Second crossing of the Columbia, 15
Selkirk Range, 12-14
Seton Karr, H. W., 46, 79, 81, 90,
101, 103, 231, 232
Sett-Shoo, 225
Shuswap Indians, 17
Shuswap Lakes, 17
Sikamous Narrows, 17
Sitkoom, 241
Sitka, 39, 43, 44, 46, 47, 63
Shawaan, 59, 160, 128, 129-133,
162, 165, 169
Sheep, 238
Skeena River, 29
Skilloch Lake, 239
Spellumacheen River, 17
Sporting expeditions, 242, 243
Squ^rel-skins, 225
St. George Island, 242
St. Elias Alps, 141
Stephen's Passage, 33
Stikeen River, 30
St. Paul Island, 242
Stony Creek, 12
Stony Indians, 6
Strawberries, 52, 71, 74, 125, 197
Surf, 65, 66, 115-123, 160
Surf, launching in the, 115-122
Swans, 68
Swedish traders, 52, 127, 140, 144
Syndicate Peak, 13
Taku Inlet, 33, 44
Tateekluk, 225
Tebenkoff, 75, 105
The s.s. Anoon, 19
Thompson Rivers, N. and S., 18
Three Brothers, schooner, 127, 134-
144
Timber, 35, 36, 228
Timber of Prince William Sound,
228
Timpseans, 23
Totem poles, 20, 26, 30
Trading material, 54
Trading with Indians, 59, 125, 140,
197, 198, 201
Trout-fishing at Griffin Lake, 17
Trout-fishing in Kamloops Lake, 18
Trout-fishing on Vancouver Island,
24
Tyonik, 240
Unalaska, 54
Unexplored Alaska, 242
Unga, 241, 243
Unimak Island, 236
Valley of the Bow, 5
Vancouver, 19, 20, 75, 105, 179, 239,
240
Vancouver Island, 20, 23, 24
Victoria, 19, 20, 23, 24
Vocabulary of Chugamute, 244
Volcanoes, 210, 211, 212, 219, 236,
237, 238, 240, 241
Western notices, 14
Whales, 228
Wind, 155, 156, 173
Winnipeg, 2
Woche, 231, 232
Woodcock, 203
Woods, 46, 69, 79, 81, 94, 95, 101,
103, 104, 115, 119
Wrangel, 241
Wrangel Straits, 30
W. Sparkes, schooner, 233
Yagtag, Cape, 67
Yakatat, 48-56, 67, 71, 124
Yale, 19
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