Fifty Years on the Old Frontier: As Cowboy, Hunter, Guide, Scout, and Ranchman

Fifty Years on the Old Frontier: As Cowboy, Hunter, Guide, Scout, and Ranchman

Fifty Years on the Old Frontier: As Cowboy, Hunter, Guide, Scout, and Ranchman

Fifty Years on the Old Frontier: As Cowboy, Hunter, Guide, Scout, and Ranchman

Excerpt

Three years ago, on an almost summer-like morning, I had been motored southeastward from a little far-away railway station close to the Wyoming line. From the crest of a divide, gazing northward over our left shoulders, we could see in the dim distance the jagged upheavals of the Black Hills of Dakota -- black because blanketed with a dense growth of pines and cedar. It was my first peep at them since the great Sioux campaign of the Centennial year. Winding slowly down the sunny southern slope, we came in sight of a wide expanse of prairie, stretching east, west, and south to the very horizon -- a shallow depression through which, twisting and turning and almost doubling upon itself in places, lazily meandered a narrow stream, its banks so bare of timber, even of the ubiquitous cottonwood, that not for long leagues were there signs of the faintest shade. Afar off to the west occasional buttes and bald-topped rounded heights were rolled up against the pallid blue of the autumn sky. One of these, the boldest and blackest, towered like a landmark above his fellows, and was hailed with joyous recognition -- Old Rawhide. Far off to the southwest, fourscore miles from the point where for the moment we had halted, loomed still another, larger by far, grander in proportion, and conspicuous in its isolation -- another old friend and guide of the thrilling days of the Indian wars -- Laramie Peak, proudest of Wyoming's monarchs east of the continental backbone, the Rockies. For the first time in over forty years we were gazing . . .

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