Snow Mountain Passage

By James D. Houston

Snow Mountain Passage is a robust retelling of our such a lot dramatic pioneer story--the ordeal of the Donner celebration. throughout the eyes of James Frazier Reed, one of many group's leaders, and the imagined "Trail Notes" of his daughter Patty, we trip in addition to the ill-fated crew decided, in any respect bills, to make it to the California territory.
James Reed is a proud, headstrong, but committed husband and father. As he and his relatives shuttle within the "Palace Car," a big, specifically built--and eventually cumbersome--covered wagon, they thrill to new attractions and focus on clash and relentless possibility. but whilst a struggle among Reed and one other driving force results in demise, Reed is exiled from the crowd and heads over the mountains by myself. The destiny of the opposite households, together with Reed's spouse and 4 youngsters, is sealed once they set out throughout a brand new, untested direction in the course of the Sierra--their ultimate mountain move. Arriving on the foothills simply because the snows begin to fall, they're left stranded for months--starving, freezing, and scuffling with to survive--while Reed trips throughout northern California, making an attempt desperately to discover capacity and males for a rescue social gathering.
a rare story of satisfaction and redemption, Snow Mountain Passage is a brilliantly imagined and grippingly instructed tale immediately from American history.

*National Bestseller

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Through mid-December they have been approximately out of meals. What occurred to the livestock? How might they run in need of pork so quickly? If 8 of fifteen perished at the method, what then of the others? What wish is there for these they left at the back of? He can't give some thought to it. no longer now. He dares no longer consider it. the one questions he dares to invite himself are tips to get there, What’s the quickest manner, and What to hold? He wishes a plan. A sharper, cleanser, clearer plan. at the least he is familiar with now the place they're. a few have cabins. a few don't. From what the letter says, we’ll want hotter garments. extra males. extra nutrients to cache alongside the best way, and extra to feed the stranded ones for the trek out. We’ll want extra of every thing. Can one schooner hold all of it? If we overload the schooner, it may possibly take weeks to arrive the fortress, given the season and the rains and what he’s heard in regards to the currents in the course of flood time. feel we cut up the day trip, then. feel we ship all provides by way of water, whereas the remainder of us go the bay and commute overland. convinced. definite, events head north and east. One by means of water. One via land. In his brain it's like a conflict crusade. A two-pronged attack. The enemy is altitude, and snow. in the meantime, if it’s precise crew is forming up at Sutter’s, how a lot will they find out about the excessive nation? Will they stay up for notice of help from Yerba Buena? Or press on and wish for reinforcements? that's the crucial half. Reinforcements … on the fringe of his imaginative and prescient a patch of blue is relocating towards him. The Commandant strives opposed to the wind, so skeletal and sticklike he can infrequently remain upright. He staggers like a guy who has been shot, yet with a stoic decision. Miraculously he retains his footing and arrives on the steps to the lodge. keeping to the banister as to the railing of a storm-tossed send, he pulls himself up onto the verandah, the place he stands except Jim till he will get his breath. “You okay, sir? ” says Jim. “Fine, thanks, certain … very tremendous indeed…. simply on my means … to the collection right here. ” Jim watches him breathe in lengthy, asthmatic breaths, puzzling over what has despatched him out into the wind, puzzling over what he can say to alter the Commandant’s brain. How can Jim get via to this frail and nervous guy who holds the keys to the money field and garage sheds? because it seems, the guy wishes not more persuading. For fifteen mins he has been brooding at his table. His respiring is regular now. Above scooped-out cheeks, the sunken eyes have jam-packed with warmth. “That letter, Mr. Reed, i need to let you know … what these wretches have continued, it penetrates the very soul. ” His voice is low and guttural and muted by way of the wind. “Every exploring get together comes again with horrendous stories, and i've heard all of them. but if ladies and youngsters are pushed to such extremes … a daughter pushed to devour of her personal father’s flesh … it really is past imagining. by means of the entire hosts of heaven, I swear that you just males shall have no matter what should be supplied via this command, all beneficial rations, garments, any demeanour of pack apparatus, no matter what cash i've got at my disposal …” Jim grabs his hand.

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