On the Trail — July 26-29

Monday, 26th. Left Green river – moved off in a W. direction – distance 12 miles — encamped on a branch of Green river called Ham’s fork. Land high, dry, and barren, except upon the streams, which afford grass in abundance; also black currants, which though not delicious are acceptable.

The next day Bidwell recorded nothing more than “Advanced upstream about 12 miles,” and then he dittoed this entry for the next two days. Nothing very exciting going on. They were in the southwest corner of what is now Wyoming, approaching the Wyoming-Idaho/Utah border. The weather was hot, and the land dry, but the river provided water and grass for their livestock.


Wild Black currants

Black currants, even if they were not very sweet or delicious, would have provided vital nutrition for the travelers. Black currants have an extremely high level of vitamin C, as well as good levels of potassium, phosphorus, and iron. Excellent for keeping scurvy at bay, and scurvy is always a danger when people are living primarily on meat, as these pioneers were.

About nancyleek

Nancy is a retired librarian who lives in Chico, California. She is the author of John Bidwell: The Adventurous Life of a California Pioneer.
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