The Adventures of a Forty-niner eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 105 pages of information about The Adventures of a Forty-niner.

THE GRIZZLY BEARS.

One warm afternoon my friend Me and myself thought we would take a walk over to Pesedeo; that was about three miles to the Pacific ocean.  The seal rocks is where the sea lions or seals can always be seen.  It was the entrance to the Golden Gates, where the roar of the Pacific ocean is twice that of the Atlantic, it being six thousand miles broad, twice that of the Atlantic.  On our way we stopped into a tent to get a drink of water.  We found it occupied by three miners, one of whom was quite lame.  I inquired of him what was the matter.  He said his hip had been dislocated by the grizzlies.  I asked him how it happened.  He said they went up to the Trinity river to dig for gold.  I knew that was the most remote gold river.  He said they were lucky and found rich diggings, but after awhile their provisions gave out and they could not procure any unless they returned to the settlements.  On their way, returning on horseback, they came to three grizzly bears grazing in a field.  It was very dangerous to attack them, but they were very hungry.  They thought if they could kill one of them it would supply them with meat, so they finally decided they would take their chances and fire on them, which they did, and wounded one.  The other two took after the man whose hip was dislocated.  He fled and came to a buckeye tree, the body of which slants, and he got up in it, the bears came on under it.  After awhile they found they could not reach him.  It being a low tree one of them commenced climbing it after him.  He thought his last hour had come; all the events of his life seemed to rush on his mind, and a picture of the old-fashioned spelling book, where the man plays dead on the bear, came before him, which I distinctly recollected.  He thought his only chance was to drop from the tree and hold his breath, and play dead on the bear, which he did, and fell on his face.  One bear grabbed him by the shoulders and the other by the ankle, and in pulling, dislocated his hip.  He had a thick overcoat on which they tore to pieces.  He held his breath.  After awhile they went off and left him.  After a little while he raised his head to see if they were gone, and they came trotting back and smelt him all over again, and went away again, he holding his breath.  Then he laid a long time, fearing to move, and his companions came up

  “Each fainter trace that memory holds
    So darkly of departed years,
  In one broad glance, the soul beholds,
    And all that was at once appears”

In the cases of imminent danger such is said to be the case.  It is evident that is what saved this man’s life.  Truth is stranger than fiction.

[Illustration:  PURSUED BY THE GRIZZLIES.]

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The Adventures of a Forty-niner from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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