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On this day in Lewis & Clark history...

Lewis hikes over present Lemhi Pass leaving the headwaters of the Missouri and tasting the waters of the Columbia River. The men with Clark begin to complain about the labor required to move the canoes up the shallow Beaverhead River.

we proceeded on to the top of the dividing ridge from which I discovered immence ranges of high mountains still to the West of us with their tops partially covered with snow.

Meriwether Lewis

Cresting Lemhi Pass

Rolling hill top with a view of jagged snow peaks behin

near this place we fell in with a large and plain Indian road which came into the cove from the N. E. and led along the foot of the mountains to the S. W. oliquely approaching the main stream which we had left yesterday. this road we now pursued to the S. W. at 5 miles

Meriwether Lewis

East side of Lemhi Pass (looking north)

Sage brush and low, brown hills

the main stream now after discarding two stream on the left in this valley turns abruptly to the West through a narrow bottom betwen the mountains.

Meriwether Lewis

East side of Lemhi Pass (looking south)

Grassy range land and small brown hills

we saw an animal which we took to be of the fox kind as large or reather larger than the small wolf of the plains. it's colours were a curious mixture of black, redis-brown and yellow. it is certainly a different animal from any that we have yet seen

Meriwether Lewis

Wolverine, Gulo luscus

Small, 4-legged mammel with dark brown fur

Photo ©2006 Matthias Kabel. Downloaded from Wikimedia and used with permission of the Creative Commons 2.5 License.

we also saw several of the heath cock with a long pointed tail and an uniform dark brown colour but could not kill one of them.

Meriwether Lewis

Sage grouse, Centrocercus urophasianus

Sharp tail feathers of a male sage grouse

Photo created by Gary Kramer of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

two miles below McNeal had exultingly stood with a foot on each side of this little rivulet and thanked his god that he had lived to bestride the mighty & heretofore deemed endless Missouri.

Meriwether Lewis

Lemhi Pass

Sage brush and a ravine sloping down the hill

I now decended the mountain about ¾ of a mile which I found much steeper than on the opposite side, to a handsome bold running Creek of cold Clear water. here I first tasted the water of the great Columbia river.

Meriwether Lewis

Looking west from Lemhi Pass

Steep ravines leaving Lemhi Pass with the Bitterroot Mountains in vi

encamped on the Lard Side men complain verry much of the emence labour they are obliged to undergo & wish much to leave the river. I passify them. the weather Cool, and nothing to eate but venison, the hunters killed three Deer to day

William Clark

Beaverhead River

River valley with grassy shores

On the head springs of the Missouri, at the foot of Portage hill...flowers two or three, larger than any other known speicies [of Mimulus], of a beautiful pale purple.

Pursh (Meriwether Lewis)

Lewis's red monkey-flower, Mimulus lewisii

Specimen of Lewis' red monkey-flower laid out on white linen cloth