home

articles

news

links

book

search

new item

new item

These men were members of the expedition.
Click on their images for brief biographys,
and on the image of the mounted expedition.

Kit Carson. "We were nearly out of provisions and cross the mountain we must, let the consequences be what they may."

John Charles Frémont, February 4, 1944. "To-night we had no shelter, but we made a large fire around one of the huge pines; and covering the snow with small boughs, on which we spread our blankets, soon made ourselves comfortable. The night was very bright and clear, though the thermometer was only at 10°. A strong wind, which sprang up at sundown, made it intensely cold; and this was one of the bitterest nights during the journey. Two Indians joined our party here; and one of them, an old man, immediately began to harangue us, saying that ourselves and animals would perish in the snow; and that if we would go back, he would show us another and a better way to cross the mountain. He spoke in a very loud voice, and there was a singular repetition of phrases and arrangement of words, which rendered his speech striking and not unmusical. We had now begun to understand some of the words, and, with the aid of signs, easily comprehended the old man's ideas. "Rock upon rock - rock upon rock - snow upon snow," said he; "even if you get over the snow, you will not be able to get down from the mountains." He made us the sign of precipices, and showed us how the feet of the horses would slip, and throw them off from the narrow trails that led along their sides."

Charles Preuss, February 11th, 1844. "We are now completely snowed in. The snowstorm is on top of us. The wind obliterates all tracks which, with incredible effort, we make for our horses. The horses are about twenty miles behind and are expected to arrive tonight, or rather, they are now no longer expected. How could they get through? At the moment no one can tell what will really happen. It is certain we shall have to eat horse meat. I should not mind if we only had salt. I feel terribly weak and have little appetite."

go Learn more about Long Camp.
go Learn about the approach to the campsite and the pass.
goAn overview of the route from Markleeville to the Pass.
go See an article by Tom Chaffin on this discovery in OUTSIDE MAGAZINE, April 2000 issue.
go A map of the route along the So. Fk. of the American River
go A map of the entire route 1843-44
go A roster of the expedition
go Routes in 3D
go Just who discovered Carson Pass, anyway?

THE CROSSING, by Bob Graham, tells this story step by step and day by day, in the words of Frémont, Carson, and expedition cartographer Charles Preuss, along with annotation and maps detailing the route.

An email from a Long Camp visitor

©1999, 2007
Bob Graham