“Well,” said Davis, after he had inspected the body sufficiently, “we might as well turn in and sleep the rest of the night. The trail back to camp is too rough to follow in the night.” And so saying he rolled up in his blankets.
“Sleep!” said the preacher; “sleep with those dum things wandering about! Not much.” And the preacher rebuilt his fire, climbed upon a log, and roosted there, with cocked carbine, until daybreak, while the Lieutenant slept and snored.
The “other story” is about Private McNamara, a Grizzly, and some gray squirrels. McNamara got leave to go hunting, and went over to Devil’s Gulch, the roughest canyon in the country and the best hiding place for big game. McNamara had good luck, and killed about a dozen gray squirrels, which he slung to his belt. He had turned homeward, and was picking his way through the fallen timber, when a Grizzly arose from behind a log about fifty yards away. McNamara raised his carbine and fired. The bear howled and started for him, and McNamara felt in his belt for another cartridge, but none was there. He had fired his last shot.
McNamara realized that he had to trust to his legs to get him out of that scrape, and he turned and ran faster than he ever sprinted in his life. But the bear was the better runner, and gained rapidly. The dangling squirrels impeded McNamara’s action, and as he ran he tried to get rid of them. He pulled two loose and dropped them, and the Grizzly stopped to investigate. Bruin found them good, and he ate them in two gulps and resumed the chase.
McNamara dropped some more squirrels and gained a good lead, and then he unhooked his belt and dropped all that were left, and when the Grizzly finished the lot McNamara was out of sight across the river and getting his second wind for a long run home.
The right of way.
“It was pretty late in the season,” said my friend, the prospector, “when I took a notion that I’d like to see what sort of a country lies north of the Umpqua River, in Oregon, and I struck into the mountains from Drain Station with my prospecting outfit and as much grub as I could pack upon my horse. After leaving Elk Creek I followed a hunting trail for a day, but after that it was rough scrambling up and down mountain sides and through gulches, and the horse and I had a pretty tough time. The Umpqua Mountains are terribly steep and wild and it’s no fool of a job to cross them.
“There is any amount of game in those mountains, and where I went it never is hunted, and, therefore, not hard to find. If I had cared to shoot much, I could have killed a great many bears, but I wasn’t in there for fun so much as for business, and I didn’t shoot but one. Bear meat is no good at any time unless a man is starving, according to my notions, and in the summer it is worse than no good. Before