The Journals of Lewis & Clark: July 8, 1806

by Meriwether Lewis and William Clark
July 7, 1806
July 9, 1806

July 8, 1806

July 8th 1806. Set out at 6 A.M.

N 25 W. 31/2 m. to the top of a hill from whence we saw the Shishequaw mountain about 8 M. distant, immediately before us. passed Dearborne's river at 3 m. this stream comes form the S. W. out of the mountains which are about 5 Ms. to our left. the bed of the river is about 100 yds. wide tho the water occupys only about 30 yds. it appears to spread over it's bottoms at certain seasons of the year and runs a mear torrant tearing up the trees by the roots which stand in it's bottom the Shishiquaw mountain is a high insulated conic mountain standing several miles in advance of the Eastern range of the rocky mountains. Country broken and mountanous to our wright.

North- 141/2 ms. through an open plain to Shishequaw Creek 20 yds. wide bottoms and considerable gantity of timber it leaves the mountain to the S E and enters the mountains. we struck it about 10 miles below the mountain which boar S. 32 W. from us. the road continued along the foot of the mountain to the West of north which not being anything like our course and the country becoming tolerably level at the commencement of this course we steered through the plains leaving the road with a view to strike Medicine river and hunt down it to it's mouth in order to procure the necessary skins to make geer, and meat for the three men whom we mean to leave at the falls as none of them are hunters. we halted and dined on Shishequaw Creek R. Fields killed a fine buck and a goat; Josh. Fields saw two buffaloe below us some distance which are the first that have been seen. we saw a great number of deer goats and wolves as we passed through the plains this morning but no Elk or buffaloe. saw some barking squirrils much rejoiced at finding ourselves in the plains of the Missouri which abound with game.

N. 50 E 2 m. to the discharge of Shishequaw Creek into the Medicine Rivers through an extensive beautiful) and level bottom.

N. 85° E. 8 m. to our encampment of this evening on a large island the bottoms continue level low and extensive plains level and not very elivated partcularly on the N. E. side of the river. the land of neither the plains nor bottoms is fertile. it is of a light colour intermixed with a considerable proportion of gravel the grass generally about 9 inghes high. the hunters were unsuccessful this evening. I killed a very large and the whitest woolf I have seen-

Tuesday July 8th 1806

Our horses being Scattered we were detained unill 8 A. M before we Set out. we proceeded on down Willards Creek on the S.W. Side about 11 miles near which the Creek passes through the mountain we then Steared S. 20° E. to the West branch of Jeffersons river in Snake Indian cove about 7 miles and halded two hours to let the horses graize. after dinner we proceeded on down the forke which is here but Small 9 Miles to our encampment of 17 Augt. at which place we Sunk our Canoes & buried Some articles, as before mentioned the most of the Party with me being Chewers of Tobacco become So impatient to be chewing it that they Scercely gave themselves time to take their Saddles off their horses before they were off to the deposit. I found every article Safe, except a little damp. I gave to each man who used tobacco about two feet off a part of a role took one third of the ballance myself and put up 2/3 in a box to Send down with the most of the articles which had been left at this place, by the Canoes to Capt. Lewis. as it was late nothing Could be done with the Canoes this evening. I examined them and found then all Safe except one of the largest which had a large hole in one Side & Split in bow. The Country through which we passed to day was diversified high dry and uneaven Stoney open plains and low bottoms very boggy with high mountains on the tops and North sides of which there was Snow, great quantities of the Species of hysoop & shrubs common to the Missouri plains are Scattered in those Vallys and hill Sides. The road which we have traveled from travellers rest Creek to this place an excellent road. and with only a few trees being cut out of the way would be an excellent waggon road one Mountain of about 4 miles over excepted which would require a little digging The distance is 164 Miles-. Shields killed an antelope