We awoke the next morning full of anticipation. Something new lay ahead of us, a promise of variety. In plain sight of our camp lay the entrance to Flaming Gorge, the gateway to the entire series of canyons. Hurriedly finishing our camp duties, we loaded the boats, fastened down the hatches, and shoved off into the current, eager to be on our way.

It was cloudy overhead and looked as if we were to have more rain. Even then it must have been raining away to the north, for a dirty, clay-colored torrent rushed through the dry arroyo of the night before, a stream large enough to discolour the water of the Green itself. But we thought little of this. We were used to seeing muddy water in the Colorado's gorges; in fact we were surprised to find clear water at all, even in the Green River. Rowing downstream we found that the country sloped gently towards the mountains. The river skirted the edge of these foot-hills as if looking for a possible escape, then turned and entered the mountain at a sharp angle. The walls sloped back considerably at first, and there was a little shore on either side.

Somewhere near this point runs the dividing line of Wyoming and Utah.

We considered the gateway a subject worthy of a motion picture, if taken from the deck of the boat; but doubted if it would be a success owing to the condition of the light and the motion of the boat. Still it was considered worthy of a trial, and the film was run through.

The colour of the rocks at the entrance was a light red, but not out of the ordinary in brilliancy. The rock formation was stratified, but displaced; standing at an angle and flexed over on top with a ragged break here and there, showing plainly the great pressure to which the rocks had been subjected. The upheaval was not violent, the scientists tell us, but slow and even, allowing the river to maintain its old channel, sawing its way through the sandstone. The broken canyon walls, when well inside the gorge, were about 600 to 700 feet high. The mountains beyond and on either side were much higher. The growth on the mountain sides was principally evergreen; Douglas fir, the bull-pine and yellow pine. There was a species of juniper, somewhat different from the Utah juniper, with which we were familiar at the Grand Canyon. Bushes and undergrowth were dense above the steep canyon walls, which were bare. Willows, alder-thickets, and a few cottonwood trees lined the shores.

Meanwhile the current had quickened, almost imperceptibly at first, but enough to put us on our guard. While there were no rapids, use was made of what swift water we found by practising on the method we would use in making a passage through the bad rapids. As to this method, unused as yet by either of us, we had received careful verbal instruction from Mr. Stone, who had made the trip two years before our own venture; and from other friends of Nathan Galloway, the trapper, the man who first introduced the method on the Green and Colorado rivers.

Our experience on water of any kind was rather limited. Emery could row a boat, and row it well, before we left Green River, but had never gone over any large rapids. While he was not nearly so large or heavy as I, - weighing no more than 130 pounds, while I weighed 170 pounds, - he made up for his lighter weight by a quickness and strength that often surprised me. He was always neat and clever in his method of handling his boat, taking a great deal of pride in keeping it free from marks, and avoiding rocks when making a landing. I had done very little rowing before leaving Green River, so little that I had difficulty in getting both oars in the water at the same time. Of course it did not take me long to learn that; but I did not have the knack of making clean landings, and bumped many rocks that my brother missed. Still I was improving all the time and was anxious to get into the rough water, feeling sure I would get through somehow, but doing my best in the meantime to get the knack of handling the boat properly before the rough water was reached.

An occasional rock would stick up above the surface; the swift water would rush up on it, or drive past on either side. Instead of pulling downstream with might and main, and depending on a steersman with a sweep-oar to keep us clear of obstructions - the method usually adopted on large rivers, and by the earlier parties on the Colorado - by our method the single oarsman reversed his boat so that it was turned with the stern downstream, giving the oarsman a view of what was ahead; then by pulling upstream the boat was held in check. We allowed ourselves to be carried in a direct line with the rocks ahead, approaching them as closely as we dared; then, with a pull on one oar, the boat was turned slightly at an angle to the current, and swung to one side or the other; just as a ferry is headed into the current, the water itself helping to force it across. The ferry is held by a cable; the boat, by the oarsman; the results are quite similar.

The boats, too, were somewhat unusual in design, having been carefully worked out by Galloway after much experience with the problem, and after building many boats. He finally settled on the design furnished us by Mr. Stone. The flat bottom, sloping up from the centre to either end, placed the boats on a pivot one might say, so that they could be turned very quickly, much more quickly than if they had had a keel. There was a four foot skag or keel under the stern end of the boat, but this was only used when in quiet water; and as it was never replaced after being once removed we seldom refer to it. Being flat-bottomed, they drew comparatively little water, a matter quite important on low water such as we found in the Green River. While each boat carried a weight of seven hundred pounds in addition to its own five hundred pounds, they often passed over rocks less than ten inches below the surface, and did so without touching. While the boats were quite large, the arched decks made them look even larger. A considerable amount of material could be stored under these decks. The only part of the boat that was entirely open or unprotected from the waves was the cockpit, or mid-section occupied by the oarsman. This was only large enough for one man. A second man had to sit on the deck behind the oarsman, with his feet hanging into the cockpit. Jimmy occupied this place of honour as we drifted through the placid water; first on one boat, then on the other, entertaining us meanwhile with his songs.

We encountered two splashy little rapids this day, but with no rocks, or any dangerous feature whatever. Any method, or none at all, was safe enough in these rapids.

The colouring of the rocks changed as we proceeded, and at the lower end of the short canyon we saw the flaming patch of colour that had suggested its name to Major Powell, forty-two years before. Intensified on that occasion by the reflected light of a gorgeous sunset, it must have been a most brilliant spectacle.

Two beavers slid into the water when we were close beside them, then rose to the surface to stare curiously when we had passed. We left them undisturbed. Some geese decoyed us into an attempt to ambush them, but they kept always just out of reach of our guns. Wise fellows, those geese!

A geological fault accompanied by the breaking down of the walls marks the division between Flaming Gorge and Horseshoe Canyon, which immediately follows. We nooned here, opposite a deserted cabin. A trail dropped by easy stages over the slope on the east side; and fresh tracks showed that sheep had recently been driven down to the water's edge.

Passing through Horseshoe, - another very short canyon, - we found deep, placid pools, and sheer, light red walls rising about four hundred feet on either side, then sloping back steeply to the tree-covered mountains. In the middle of this canyon Emery was startled out of a day-dream by a rock falling into the water close beside him, with never a sound of warning. Years spent in the canyons had accustomed Emery and me to such occurrences; but Jimmy, unused to great gorges and towering cliffs, was much impressed by this incident. After all, it is only the unusual that is terrible. Jimmy was ready enough to take his chances at dodging bricks hurled by a San Francisco earthquake, but never got quite used to rocks descending from a source altogether out of sight. Small wonder, after all! Later we were to experience more of this thing, and on a scale to startle a stoic!

We halted at the end of Horseshoe, early in the afternoon of September 14, 1911, one week out from Green River City. Camp No. 6 was pitched on a gravelly shore beside Sheep Creek, a clear sparkling stream, coming in from the slopes of the Uintah range. Just above us, on the west, rose three jagged cliffs, about five hundred feet high, reminding one by their shape of the Three Brothers of Yosemite Valley. Here, again, we were treated to another wonderful example of geologic displacement, the rocks of Horseshoe Canyon lying in level strata; while those of Kingfisher, which followed, were standing on end. Sheep Creek, flowing from the west, finds an easy course through the fault, at the division of the canyons. The balance of this day was spent in carefully packing our material and rearranging it in our boats, for we expected hard work to follow.

Tempted by the rippling song of the brook, and by tales of fish to be found therein, we spent two hours fishing from its banks on the morning of the 15th. But the foliage of overhanging trees and shrubs was dense, making it difficult to cast our lines, or even to climb along its shores, and our small catch of two trout, which were fried with a strip of bacon to add flavour, only whetted our appetites for more.

It was a little late in the season for many birds. Here in Kingfisher Canyon were a few of the fish-catching birds from which the canyon took its name. There were many of the tireless cliff-swallows scattered all through these canyons, wheeling and darting, ever on the wing. These, with the noisy crested jays, an occasional "camp-robber," the little nuthatches, the cheerful canyon wren with his rollicking song, the happy water-ousel, "kill-deer," and road-runners and the water birds, - ducks, geese, and mud-hens, with an occasional crane, - made up the bird life seen in the open country and in these upper canyons. Earlier in the season it must be a bird's paradise, for berries and seeds would then be plentiful.

We resumed our journey at 10 A.M., a very short run bringing us to the end of Kingfisher Canyon. The three canyons passed through approximate hardly more than ten miles in length, different names being given for geological reasons, as they really form only one canyon. The walls at the end were broken down, and brilliantly tinted talus of many hues covered the slopes, the different colours intermingling near the bottom. The canyon-walled river turned southeast here, and continued in this general direction for many miles, but with many twists and turns.

We had previously been informed that Red Canyon, the next to follow, while not considered bad when compared to others, gave one the experience most necessary to combat the rapids farther down. It was not without danger, however, as a review of previous expeditions showed: some had lost their lives, still others, their boats; and one of Major Powell's parties had upset a boat in a Red Canyon rapid. The stage of water was so different on these previous attempts that their experiences were of little value to us one way or the other. A reference to pictures taken by two of these parties showed us there was considerable more water when they went through - six, and even eight feet higher in places. Possibly this would be the best stage on which to make the voyage in heavy boats. The unfortunate ones had taken the spring rise, or flood water, with disastrous results to themselves or their boats.

We soon found that our passage was to be hard on account of having too little water. In the quiet water above we had been seldom bothered with shoals; but now that we were in swifter water, there was scarcely any depth to it at all, except in the quiet pools between the rapids.

For a description of our passage through this upper end of Red Canyon we refer to our journal: sketchy notes jotted down, usually in the evening just before retiring, by the light of a camp-fire, or the flickering flame of a candle. Under the date of Friday, September the 15th, we find the following:

     "End of Kingfisher: long, quiet pools and shoals where we 
     grounded a few times; several small, splashy rapids; then a 
     larger one near an old boat landing. Looked the rapid over 
     from the shore. Jim remained at the lower end with a 
     life-preserver on a rope, while we ran the rapid. Struck one 
     or two rocks, lightly; but made the run in safety."

     "At the third rapid we saw some geese - but they got away. At 
     noon we ate a cold lunch and because of the low water 
     removed the skags, carrying them in the cockpit. The scenery 
     in upper Red Canyon is impressive: pines and fir come down 
     on the sloping sides to the river's edge; the rocks are 
     reddish brown in colour, often broken in squares, and 
     looking like great building blocks piled one upon another. 
     The canyon is about fifteen hundred feet deep; the river is 
     clear again, and averages about two hundred feet in width. 
     We have seen a few deer tracks, but have not seen any deer. 
     We also saw some jumping trout in a splashy little rapid. 
     Doubtless they came from a little creek, close by, for we 
     never heard of trout being found in the Green River."

     "We made a motion picture, while dropping our boats down 
     with lines, over the first rapid we considered bad. Emery 
     remained in the boats, keeping clear of the rocks with a 
     pole. Powell's second party records an upset here. We passed 
     Kettle Creek about 5 P.M. In the fifth rapids below Kettle 
     Creek I got on the wrong side of the river and was carried 
     into a very rocky rapid - the worst so far encountered. I 
     touched a rock or two at the start, but made the run in 
     safety; while Emery ran the opposite side without trouble. 
     We camped beside a small stream on the south, where there 
     were signs of an old camp."

     "Saturday, September 16. Clear and cold in the early 
     morning. Started about 9 A.M. Lined our boats past a 
     difficult rapid. Too many rocks, not enough water. Two or 
     three miles below this I had some difficulty in a rapid, as 
     the pin of a rowlock lifted out of the socket when in the 
     middle of rough water. Emery snapped a picture just as it 
     happened. A little later E.C.[2] ran a rocky rapid, but had 
     so much trouble that we concluded to line my boat. Noon. 
     Just a cold lunch, but with hot coffee from the vacuum 
     bottles. Then at it again."

     "The scenery is wonderful; the canyon is deeper than above; 
     the river is swift and has a decided drop. We proceed 
     cautiously, and make slow progress. We camp for the day on 
     the north side close to a little, dry gully, on a level sage 
     and bunch-grass covered bottom back from the river's edge. 
     An abruptly descending canyon banked with small cottonwood 
     trees coming in from the opposite side contains a small 
     stream. Put up our tent for the second time since leaving 
     Green River, Wyoming. We are all weary, and glad to-morrow 
     is Sunday - a day of rest."

     "Sunday, September 17. E.C. and I follow a fresh deer 
     track up a game trail and get - a rabbit. Climb out about 
     1300 feet above the river to the top of the narrow canyon. 
     Here is a sloping plateau, dotted with bunch-grass and 
     grease-wood, a fourth of a mile wide. Then rounded mountains 
     rise beyond the plateau, some of the peaks reaching a height 
     of 4000 feet above the river. The opposite side is much the 
     same, but with a wider plateau. We had no idea before what a 
     wonderful country this is. It is a picture to tempt an 
     artist. High on the mountain tops is the dark blue-green of 
     pines and firs, reds and yellows are mixed in the quaking 
     aspen, - for the frost comes early enough to catch the sap in 
     the leaves; little openings, or parks with no trees, are 
     tinted a beautiful soft gray; 'brownstone fronts' are found 
     in the canyon walls; and a very light green in the 
     willow-leafed cottonwoods at the river's edge, and in all 
     side canyons where there is a running stream. The river 
     glistens in the sunlight, as it winds around the base of the 
     wall on which we stand, and then disappears around a bend in 
     the canyon. Turn where we will, we see no sign of an 
     opening, nothing but the rounded tops of wooded mountains, 
     red and green, far as the eye can reach, until they 
     disappear in the hazy blue. Finally Emery's keen eyes, aided 
     by the binoculars, discover a log cabin at the foot of a 
     mountain, on the plateau opposite us about three miles 

     "We hurry back to camp and write some letters; then Jim and 
     I cross the river and climb out over the rocky walls to the 
     plateau above. In two hours we reach the cabin. It is 
     new - not yet finished. A woman and four children are looking 
     over a garden when we arrive. They are a little frightened 
     at first, but soon recover. The woman gladly promises to 
     take out our mail when they go to the nearest town, which 
     happens to be Vernal, Utah, forty-five miles away. Three 
     other families live near by, all recently moved in from 
     Vernal. The woman tells us that Galloway hunts bear in these 
     timbered mountains, and has killed some with a price on 
     their heads - bear with a perverted taste for fresh beef."[3]

     "Thanking the woman, we make our way back to the river. We 
     see some dried-out elk horns along our trail; though it is 
     doubtful if elk get this far south at present. A deer trail, 
     leading down a ravine, makes our homeward journey much 
     easier. It has turned quite cold this evening, after sunset. 
     We finish our notes and prepare to roll into our beds a 
     little earlier than usual."