May 29, 1805
Meriwether Lewis

Last night we were all allarmed by a large buffaloe Bull, which swam over from the opposite shore and coming along side of the white perogue, climbed over it to land, he then allarmed ran up the bank in full speed directly towards the fires, and was within 18 inches of the heads of some of the men who lay sleeping before the centinel could allarm him or make him change his course, still more alarmed, he now took his direction immediately towards our lodge, passing between 4 fires and within a few inches of the heads of one range of the men as they yet lay sleeping, when he came near the tent, my dog saved us by causing him to change his course a second time, which he did by turning a little to the right, and was quickly out of sight, leaving us by this time all in an uproar with our guns in o[u]r hands, enquiring of each other the ca[u]se of the alarm, which after a few moments was explained by the centinel: we were happy to find no one hirt. The next morning we found that the buffaloe in passing the perogue had trodden on a rifle, which belonged to Capt. Clark's black man, who had negligently left her in the perogue, the rifle was much bent, he had also broken the spindle; pivit, and shattered the stock of one of the blunderbushes on board, ... it appears that the white perogue which contains our most valuable stores is attended by some evil gennii.

(Judieths River.)

(Clark named the stream Judith's River, in honor of thirteen-year-old Julia Hancock of Fincastle, Va., who 2-1/2 years later was to become his wife.)

I counted the remains of the fires of 126 Indian lodges which appeared to be of very recent date perhaps 12 or 15 days. ... today we passed on the Stard side the remains of a vast many mangled carcases of Buffalow which had been driven over a precipice of 120 feet by the Indians and perished; the water appeared to have washed away a part of this immence pile of slaughter and still their remained the fragments of at least a hundred carcases they created a most horrid stench. in this manner the Indians of the Missouri distroy vast herds of buffaloe at a stroke; for this purpose one of the most active and fleet young men is scelected and disguished in a robe of buffaloe skin, having also the skin of the buffaloe's head with the ears and horns fastened on his head in form of a cap, thus caparisoned he places himself at a convenient distance between a herd of buffaloe and a precipice proper for the purpose, which happens in many places on this river for miles together; the other indians now surround the herd on the back and flanks and at a signal agreed on all shew themselves at the same time moving forward towards the buffaloe; the disguished indian or decoy has taken care to place himself sufficiently night the buffaloe to be noticed by them when they take to flight and runing before them they follow him in full speede to the precipice, the cattle behind driving those in front over and seeing them go do not look or hesitate about following untill the whole are precipitated down the precepice forming one common mass of dead an[d] mangled carcases: the decoy in the mean time has taken care to secure himself in some cranney or crivice of the clift which he had previously prepared for that purpose. the part of the decoy I am informed is extreamly dangerous, if they are not very fleet runers the buffaloe tread them under foot and crush them to death, and sometimes drive them over the precipice also, where they perish in common with the buffaloe. ...

(Re: wolves) ...Capt. C. who was on shored killed one of them with his espontoon ... called Slaughter river.

May 29, 1805
William Clark

I think from appearances that upwards of 100 of those animals must have perished here. Great numbers of wolves were about this place & verry jentle I killed one of them with my spear.

... we gave the men a dram, altho verry small it was sufficent to effect several men. a table spoon full of water exposed to the air in a Saucer would evaporate in 36 hours when the mercury did not stand higher than the temperate point in the head of the day.

May 29, 1805
John Ordway

in the course of last night we were alarmed by a Buffalow Swimming across from the opposite Shore & landed opposite the white perogue in which our Captains Stay.    he crossed the perogue, & went with great forse up the bank to the fire where the men were Sleeping & was within 18 Inches of their heads when one man Setting up alarmed him and he turned his course along the range of men as they lay, passing between 4 fires & within a fiew Inches of Several mens heads, it was Supposed if he had trod on a man it would have killed him dead.   the dog flew at him which turned him from running against the lodge, were the officers lay.    he passed without doeing more damage than bend a rifle & breaking hir Stalk & injuring one of the blunder busses in the perogue as he passed through.   we Set out this morning at the usal hour and proceeded on.   at 2-1/2 miles passed the mouth of a river [Judith River, named by Clark after his future wife, Judith Hancock.] [blank] yards wide, discharging a great quantity of water, and containing more wood in its bottom than the Missourie.   this river Capt. Lewis walked up a Short distance and he Saw an old Indian encampment.   we Saw also great encampments on the Stard Side at the mouth of a small creek [Valley Run to the expedition, now Chip Creek.] of about 100 lodges, which [a]ppeared to be about 5 or 6 weeks past.  our Indian woman examined their moccasons &. C. and told us that they were the Indians which resided below the rockey Mountains, and to the North of the river    that hir nation made their moccasons, differently.   at 6 1/2 miles passed a conserable rapid [The expedition's Ash Rapids, now Deadmans Rapids.] at which place the hills approach near the river on both Sides, leave a narrow bottom on the Starboard Side (ash rapid) and continue close all day but little timber.   we Saw the remains of a number of buffalow which had been drove down a steep clift of rocks, from appearence their was upwards of 100 of these animels all picked off in a drove, great nombers of wolves were about this place & verry gentle   Capt Clark killed one of them with his Sphere.-- [The captain's espontoon.].  the hills above ash rapid contain more rocks & coal, and the more rapid points.   we come too for dinner at or opposite the entrance of a Small River [The expedition's Slaughter River because of the dead buffalo found nearby, now Arrow Creek.] which alls in on the Lard. Side, & no timber for Some distance.   has a bold running Stream.  Soon after we came too it began to rain, and blew hard, and as we were in a good harbour a point of wood on the Stard Side, & no timber for Some distance above, induced the Captains to Stay all night, they gave each man a dram    though Small was enofe to efect Several of the men   one of the hunters killed an Elk.    in the evening Capt. Clark killed 2 beaver on the Side of the bank.   Some of the hunters who went out on the high land, Said it Snowed & hailed on the hills.   we Came 18 miles this day.--

May 29, 1805
Patrick Gass

We proceeded on early and had a fine morning; passed two rivers, one on each side. [Judith River and Chip Creek, Valley Run, or Creek, to the expedition.]  At 12 it became cloudy and began to rain.  We went about eighteen miles and halted at a handsome grove of timber on the South side.  It rained a little all the afternoon.   Some of the men went out to hunt and killed an elk.  Last night about 12 o'clock a buffaloe swimming the river happened to land at one of the periogues, crossed over it and broke two guns, but not so as to render them useless.  He then went straight on through the men where they were sleeping, but hurt none of them.  As we came along to day we passed a place where the Indians had driven above an hundred head of buffaloe down a precipice and killed them.

May 29, 1805
Joseph Whitehouse

Some clouday.   a large buffaloe Swam the river last night, and came out across one of the perogues & broke a blunderbuss [ The expedition had two blunderbusses, both swivel-mounted shoulder arms usually used to fire buckshot for defense.], & bent a rifle & came up the bank through the Camp & like to have tramped on Several of the men as they were a Sleep.  we Set off as usal & proceeded on.    passed the mouth of a large Creek or 2 [The Judith River, named for Judith Hancock, who became Clark's wife upon his return, and Chip Creek, the expeditions Valley Creek.], on the S.S. & bottoms of timber.   about 10 oC. A.M. we passed a handsom bottom on the N. S. where about 100 lodges of Indians had lately been camped.  we Suspect it was a nation called the blackfoot Indians which live back from the River, to the Northward.   we got Some of their dog poles.  we proceeded on    passed over hard rifles which was So rapid that caused high waves for Some distance below.   passed Several Creeks on each Side of the river.   about one oC. P.M. we passed high Steep clifts of rocks on the N.S. where the natives had lately drove a gang of buffaloe off from the plains [A buffalo jump; See Lewis's entry for this day.]    they fell So far on the uneven Stone below that it killed them dead.   they took what meat they wanted, & now the wolves & bears are feasting on the remains, which causes a horrid Smell.   Capt. Clark killed a wolf with a Sphere [spear - the captain's espontoon.] near that place.   we Saw Several brown bear on the mountains on the S. Side.   about 3 oC. P.M. we passed the mouth of a large Creek or Small river on S.S. [Slaughter River to the expedition, now Arrow Creek.]    we halted little above at a handsom bottom of timber on the N.S.    began to rain, the wind rose high from N.W.  So we Camped for the night. [At today's Slaughter River Landing Recreation Area.] Some of the hunters went out in the plains.   they Soon returned & Said it Snowed & hailed on the hills back from the river.   our officers gave each man a draughm of ardent Spirits.  one of the hunters killed an Elk.   hard rain this evening.   we had come 18 miles to day through a Mountaneous desert Country. Saw a nomber of geese on the river.   one man killed one of them.--

May 29, 1805
Joseph Whitehouse

We had Cloudy weather this morning, last night a Buffalo swam the River, and came out across one of the Pettyaugers, he passed over a Blunder buss, and trod on one of our Rifles which he bent, and came up the Bank, through our Camp, and had like to have trampled on several of our Men who were asleep, We set off this Morning as the usual hour, and proceeded on our Voyage and passed 2 large Creeks lying on the South side of the River, & large bottoms of Timber,

About 10 o'Clock A.M we passed a handsome bottom of land, lying on the South side of the River where stood about 100 lodges of Indians that had lately been encamped there; we expected it had been a nation of Indians called the Black foot Tribe, who reside back from the River, to the Northward, we landed and got some of their dog poles, for setting poles for our Crafts, We proceeded on and passed over some hard Riffles, which were so rapid, that it caused the Waves to run high, for some distance below, and passed several Creeks lying on both sides of the River, About 1 o'Clock P.M. we passed a high Clift of Rocks, lying on the North side of the River, where the Natives had lately drove a Gang of Buffalo, off, from the plains, Those Buffalo fell so far & the Uneveness of the Stones below; that it had killed a number of them, they had taken what Meat they wanted, and we saw Gangs of Wolves, & Bears, feasting on the remainder, The Indians had piled a large number of Bones of the Buffalo & upwards 400 Horns, the putrified Meat caused a horred Stench, Captain Clarke killed a Wolf, with a Spear near that plece; We saw several brown bear on the Mountains on the South side of the River, About 3 o'Clock we passed the Mouth of a large Creek, or rather a small River, lying on the South side, We halted a little above at a handsome bottom of Timber, lying on the North side of the River, where it began to Rain & the Wind rose, & blew hard from the North West, At this place we took up our Encampment for the Night.--

Some of our hunters went out into the plains, but soon returned to us, and mentioned that it snowed, & hailed on the Hills back from the River; our Officers gave each of the party a dram of Ardent Spirit, One of those hunters killed an Elk, which was brought to our Camp, In the Evening we had rain, We had come this day 18 Miles through the Mountains, and a desert Country, We saw a number of Geese in the River this day, and One was shot by one of our party--