We camped that night at the Ute Ford, or the Crossing of the Fathers; a noted landmark of bygone days, when Escalante (in 1776) and others later followed the inter-tribal trails across these unfriendly lands. Later marauding Navajo used this trail, crossing the canyon to the north side, raiding the scattered Mormon settlements, bringing their stolen horses, and even sheep, down this canyon trail. Then they drove them across on a frozen river, and escaped with them to their mountain fastness. The Mormons finally tired of these predatory visits, and shut off all further loss from that source by blasting off a great ledge at the north end of the trail. This ruined the trail beyond all hope of repair, and there is no travel at present over the old Ute Crossing. The fording of the river on horseback was effected by dropping down to the river through a narrow side canyon, and crossing to the centre on a shoal, then following a centre shoal down quite a distance, and completing the crossing at a low point on the opposite side. This was only possible at the very lowest stage of water.

The morning following our arrival here, we walked about a mile up the gravelly slope on the south side, to see if we could locate the pass by which the trail dropped down over these 3000-foot walls. The canyon had changed in appearance after leaving the mountain, and now we had a canyon; smaller, but not unlike the Grand Canyon in appearance, with an inner plateau, and a narrow canyon at the river, while the walls on top were several miles apart, and towering peaks or buttes rose from the plateau, reaching a height almost equal to the walls themselves. The upper walls were cream-tinted or white sandstone, the lower formation was a warm red sandstone. We could not discover the pass without a long walk to the base of the upper cliffs, so returned to the boats.

About this time we heard shots, seeming to come from some point down the river, and on the north side. Later a dull hollow sound was heard like pounding on a great bass drum. We could not imagine what it was, but knew that it must be a great distance away. We had noticed instances before this, where these smooth, narrow canyon had a great magnifying effect on noises. In the section above the San Juan, where the upper walls overhung a little, a loud call would roll along for minutes before it finally died. A shot from a revolver sounded as if the cliff were falling.

Our run this morning was delightful. The current was the best on which we had travelled. The channel swung from side to side, in great half circles, with most of the water thrown against the outside bank, or wall, with a five-or six-mile an hour current close to the wall. We took advantage of all this current, hugging the wall, with the stern almost touching, and with the bow pointed out so we would not run into the walls or scrape our oars. Then, when it seemed as if our necks were about to be permanently dislocated, from looking over one shoulder, the river would reverse its curve, the channel would cross to the other side, and we would give that side of our necks a rest. Once in a great while I would bump a rock, and would look around sheepishly, to see if my brother had seen me do it. I usually found him with a big grin on his face, if he happened to be ahead of me.

We rowed about twenty miles down the river before we learned what had caused the noises heard in the morning. On rounding a turn we saw the strange spectacle of fifteen or twenty men at work on the half-constructed hull of a flat-bottomed steamboat, over sixty feet in length. This boat was on the bank quite a distance above the water, with the perpendicular walls of a crooked side canyon rising above it. It was a strange sight, here in this out-of-the-way corner of the world. Some men with heavy sledges were under the boat, driving large spikes into the planking. This was the noise we had heard that morning.

The blasting, we learned later, was at some coal mines, several miles up this little canyon, which bore the name of Warm Creek Canyon. A road led down through the canyon, making it possible to haul the lumber for the boat, clear to the river's edge. The nearest railroad was close to two hundred miles from this place, quite a haul considering the ruggedness of the country. The material for the boat had been shipped from San Francisco, all cut, ready to put together. The vessel was to be used to carry coal down the river, to a dredge that had recently been installed at Lee's Ferry.

The dinner gong had just sounded when we landed, and we were taken along with the crowd. There were some old acquaintances in this group of men, we found, from Flagstaff, Arizona. These men had received a Flagstaff paper which had published a short note we had sent from Green River, Utah. They had added a comment that no doubt this would be the last message we would have an opportunity to send out. Very cheering for Emery's wife, no doubt. Fortunately she shared our enthusiasm, and if she felt any apprehension her few letters failed to show it.

We resumed our rowing at once after dinner, for we wished to reach Lee's Ferry, twenty-five miles distant, that evening. We had a good current, and soon left our friends behind us. We pulled with a will, and mile after mile was covered in record time, for our heavy boats.

The walls continued to get higher as we neared our goal, going up sheer close to the river. We judged the greatest of these walls to be about eleven hundred feet high. After four hours of steady pulling we began to weary, for ours were no light loads to propel; but we were spurred to renewed effort by hearing the sounds of an engine in the distance. On rounding a turn we saw the end of Glen Canyon ahead of us, marked by a breaking down of the walls, and a chaotic mixture of dikes of rock, and slides of brilliantly coloured shales, broken and tilted in every direction. Just below this, close to a ferry, we saw the dredge on the right side of the river. We were quite close to the dredge before we were seen. Some men paused at their work to watch us as we neared them, one man calling to those behind him, "There come the brothers!"

A whistle blew announcing the end of their day's labour, and of ours as well, as it happened. There was some cheering and waving of hats. One who seemed to be the foreman asked us to tie up to a float which served as a landing for three motor boats, and a number of skiffs. A loudly beaten triangle of steel announced that the evening meal was ready at a stone building not far from the dredge. We were soon seated at a long table with a lot of others as hungry as we, partaking of a well-cooked and substantial meal. We made arrangements to take a few meals here, as we wished to overhaul our outfits before resuming our journey.

The meal ended, we inquired for the post-office, and were directed to a ranch building across the Paria River, a small stream which entered from the north, not unlike the Fremont River in size and appearance. Picking our way in the darkness, on boulders and planks which served as a crossing, we soon reached the building, set back from the river in the centre of the ranch. A man named Johnson, with his family, had charge of the ranch and post-office as well. Mail is brought by carrier from the south, a cross-country trip of 160 miles, through the Hopi and Navajo Indian Reservations.

Johnson informed us that an old-time friend named Dave Rust had waited here three or four days, hoping to see us arrive, but business matters had forced him to leave just the day before. We were very sorry to have missed him. Rust lived in the little Mormon town of Kanab, Utah, eighty miles north of the Grand Canyon opposite our home. In addition to being a cattle man and rancher, he had superintended the construction of a cable crossing, or tramway, over the Colorado River, beside the mouth of Bright Angel Creek, not many miles from our home. He also maintains a cozy camp at this place, for the accommodation of tourists and hunting parties, which he conducts up Bright Angel Creek and into the Kaibab Forest. It was while returning from such a hunting trip that we first met Rust. Many are the trips we have taken with him since then, Emery, with his wife and the baby, even, making the "crossing" and the eighty-mile horseback ride to his home in Kanab, while I had continued on through to Salt Lake City. Rust had been the first to tell us of Galloway and his boating methods; and had given us a practical demonstration on the river. Naturally there was no one we would have been more pleased to see at that place, than Rust.

In our mail we found a letter from him, stating, among other things, that he had camped the night before on the plateau, a few hundred feet above a certain big rapid, well known through this section as the Soap Creek Rapid. This locality is credited with being the scene of the first fatality which overtook the Brown-Stanton expedition; Brown being upset and drowned in the next rapid which followed, after having portaged the Soap Creek Rapid. Rust wrote also that there was a shore along the rapid, so there would be no difficulty in making the portage; and concluded by saying that he had a very impressive dream about us that night, the second of its kind since we had started on our journey.

We understood from this that he had certain misgivings about this rapid, and took his dream to be a sort of a warning. Rust should have known us better. With all the perversity of human nature that letter made me want to run that rapid if it were possible. Why run the rapid, and get a moving picture as it was being done. Then we could show Rust how well we had learned our lesson! So I thought as we returned to the buildings near the dredge, but said nothing of what was in my mind to Emery, making the mental reservation that I would see the rapid first and decide afterwards.

The foreman of the placer mines called us into his office that evening, and suggested that it might be a good plan to go over our boats thoroughly before we left, and offered us the privilege of using their workshop, with all its conveniences, for any needed repairs. He also let us have a room in one of the buildings for our photographic work.

This foreman mourned the loss of a friend who had recently been drowned at the ferry. It seemed that the floods which had preceded us, especially that part which came down the San Juan River, had been something tremendous, rising 45 feet at the ferry, where the river was 400 feet wide; and rising much higher in the narrow portions of Glen Canyon. Great masses of driftwood had floated down, looking almost like a continuous raft. When the river had subsided somewhat, an attempt was made to cross with the ferry. The foreman and his friend, with two others, and a team of horses hitched to a wagon, were on the ferry. When in midstream it overturned in the swollen current. Three of the men escaped, the other man and the horses were drowned.

A careful search had been made for the body to a point a few miles down the river, then the canyon closed in and they could go no farther. The body was never recovered. It is seldom that the Colorado River gives up its dead. The heavy sands collect in the clothes, and a body sinks much quicker than in ordinary water. Any object lodged on the bottom is soon covered with a sand-bar. The foreman knew this, of course; yet he wished us to keep a lookout for the body, which might, by some chance, have caught on the shore, when the water receded. This was as little as any one would do, and we gave him our promise to keep a careful watch.