… continued from yesterday …

“On the morning of the 22nd I was up before there was any light in the east, and waited anxiously for its appearance so that I could move on. I got up and gave the cattle their grain, but they would not eat it as they were so thirsty; the salt water I had given them was the cause. Soon I saw a light in the sky, which I thought was in the south, but which I found came from the east. I was anxious to move on to get rid of the noise and the presence of the wolves, which had been around us all night. Not being able to get any wood for a fire I was obliged to keep my lantern burning; but that was not enough, they were so bold. My dog I kept tied up that he might not go for them; once I came very near to losing him by setting him on a coyote. This animal turned on him and I had to go to his rescue to save him; since then I have chained the dog at night. The lantern alone not being enough to keep the wolves away, I poured oil on the ground and set it on fire and used about three quarts; I have often done this before.

“It having now grown light I moved on, leaving my camp about five o’clock. My road was a down grade and about six o’clock, just as the sun was coming up, I saw to my left a herd of horses some distance away. Grass was in abundance on either side, so I thought I would stop and give the cattle a chance to eat it, but changed my mind and went on. They were so thirsty that I thought they would not eat enough to do them any good, as it was water they wanted and must have. I urged them on and traveled now at a gait of three miles an hour, and at eight o’clock we came in sight of the railroad. I was glad of it and I think my cattle were also; I have an idea that they knew some things as well as I did. Soon I was on the railroad trail that I had left at Lake station. On my left is a mountain; the old trail goes over it, the railroad trail runs around it with the track.

“From this point over the mountain to Blue Creek station, by railroad, is fourteen miles; by crossing the mountain I save eleven miles. This is one of the instances where many miles might have been saved, If I had not determined to follow the railroad where possible, and which I have done most of the way.”

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… Here we reach a stopping point in Mr. Johnson’s text, but I’ll share the conclusion of this particular tale tomorrow. I don’t want to leave anyone wondering too long whether poor Fanny and Bessie will get a drink of water!