The Journals of Lewis & Clark: July 25, 1805

by Meriwether Lewis and William Clark
July 24, 1805
July 26, 1805

July 25, 1805

Thursday July 25th 1805.

Set out at an early hour and proceeded on tolerably well the water still strong and some riffles as yesterday. the country continues much the same as the two preceeding days. in the forenoon we saw a large brown bear on an island but he retreated immediately to the main shore and ran off before we could get in reach of him. they appear to be more shy here than on the Missouri below the mountains. we saw some antelopes of which we killed one. these anamals appear now to have collected again is small herds several females with their young and one or two males compose the herd usually. some males are yet soletary or two perhaps together scattered over the plains which they seen invariably to prefer to the woodlands. if they happen accedentaly in the woodlands and are allarmed they run immediately to the plains, seeming to plaise a just confidence in their superior fleetness and bottom. we killed a couple of young gees which are very abundant and fine; but as they are but small game to subsist a party on of our strength I have forbid the men shooting at them as it waists a considerable quantity of amunition and delays our progress. we passed Capt. Clark's encampment of the 23rd inst. the face of the country & anamal and vegatable productions were the same as yesterday, untill late in the evening, when the valley appeared to termineate and the river was again hemned in on both sides with high caiggy and rocky clifts. soon after entering these hills or low mountains we passed a number of fine bold springs which burst out underneath the Lard. clifts near the edge of the water; they wer very cold and freestone water. we passed a large Crk. today in the plain country, 25 yds. wide, which discharges itself on the Stard. side; it is composed of five streams which unite in the plain at no great distance from the river and have their souces in the Mts. this stream we called Gass's Creek. after Sergt. Patric Gass one of our party.- two rapids near the large spring we passed this evening were the worst we have seen since that we passed on entering the rocky Mountain; they were obstructed with sharp pointed rocks, ranges of which extended quite across the river. the clifts are formed of a lighter coloured stone than those below I obseve some limestone also in the bed of the river which seem to have been brought down by the current as they are generally small and woarn smooth.- This morning Capt. Clark set out early and at the distance of a few miles arrived at the three forks of the Missouri, here he found the plains recently birnt on the stard. side, and the track of a horse which appeared to have passed only about four or five days. after taking breakfast of some meat which they had brought with them, examined the rivers, and written me a note informing me of his intended rout, he continued on up the North fork, which though not larger than the middle fork, boar more to the West, and of course more in the direction we were anxious to pursue. he ascended this stream about 25 miles on Stard. side, and encamped, much fatiegued, his feet blistered and wounded with the prickley pear thorns. Charbono gave out, one of his ankles failed him and he was unable to proceede any further.- I observed that the rocks which form the clifts on this part of the river appear as if they had been undermined by the river and by their weight had seperated from the parent hill and tumbled on their sides, the stratas of rock of which they are composed lying with their edges up; others not seperated seem obliquely depressed on the side next the river as if they had sunk down to fill the cavity which had been formed by the washing and wearing of the river. I have observed a red as well as a yellow species of goosberry which grows on the rocky Clifts in open places of a swetish pine like flavor, first observed in the neighbourhood of the falls; at least the yellow species was first observed there. the red differs from it in no particular except it's colour and size being somewhat larger; it is a very indifferent fruit, but as they form a variety of the native fruits of this country I preserved some of their seeds. musquetoes and knats troublesome as usual.

July 25th Thursday 1805

a fine morning we proceeded on a fiew miles to the three forks of the Missouri those three forks are nearly of a Size, the North fork appears to have the most water and must be Considered as the one best calculated for us to assend middle fork is quit as large about 90 yds. wide. The South fork is about 70 yds wide & falls in about 400 yards below the midle fork. those forks appear to be verry rapid & Contain Some timber in their bottoms which is verry extincive,- on the North Side the Indians have latterly Set the Praries on fire, the Cause I can't account for. I Saw one horse track going up the river about four or 5 days past. after Brackfast (which we made on the ribs of a Buck killed yesterday), I wrote a note informing Capt Lewis the rout I intended to take, and proeeded on up the main North fork thro a vallie, the day verry hot about 6 or 8 miles up the North fork a Small rapid river falls in on the Lard Side which affords a great Deel of water and appears to head in the Snow mountains to the S W. this little river falls into the Missouri by three mouthes, haveing Seperated after it arrives in the river Bottoms, and Contains as also all the water courses in this quarter emence number of Beaver & orter maney thousand enhabit the river & Creeks near the 3 forks (Pholosiphie's River)- We Campd on the Same Side we assended Starboard 20 miles on a direct line up the N. fork. Shabono our intrepreter nearly tired one of his ankles falling him- The bottoms are extencive and tolerable land Covered with tall grass & prickley pears The hills & mountains are high Steep & rockey. The river verry much divided by Islands Some Elk Bear & Deer and Some Small timber on the Islands. Great quantities of Currents, red, black, yellow, Purple, also Mountain Currents which grow on the Sides of Clifts; inferior in taste to the others haveing Sweet pineish flaver and are red & yellow, Choke Cheries, Boin roche, and the red buries also abound- musquitors verry trouble Som untill the mountain breeze Sprung up which was a little after night.