May 13, 1847
Summary: Contention among a few. Cold. Snakes.
Journal entry: THURSDAY: This morning cold and cloudy, cold enough for overcoats and buffalo robes.
The buffalo which was killed yesterday was cut up and divided this morning amongst the companies of tens. Some feelings are manifest this morning between Brothers Thomas Tanner and Aaron Farr on account of the former taking the latter prisoner and putting him under a guard part of the night. Perhaps Aaron was a little out of order in conversing loud after the horn blew for prayers, but I think Brother Tanner's angry spirit more blameable.
At 9:00 we moved onward nearly a west course four miles and at 11:00 stopped to feed teams at a spot which is a little better than we generally have. The wind strong from north and northeast.
At half past twelve we proceeded on again and traveled till four o'clock, distance six and three quarters miles. At this distance we arrived at a stream about six rods wide which appears to come from the northeast, the water in appearance like the Platte, the bottom of the river quick sand. Water in the middle about two feet deep; at the sides quite shoal. It appears that travelers have never discovered this stream for it is not noticed in any works that we have seen. We crossed it without difficulty and camped on its banks.
The weather cloudy and very cold, with a strong north wind. Presidents Young and Kimball rode ahead as usual to look out the road. They report that the bluffs half a mile west come clear to the river and are considerably high. They found several ranges of them and finally found a valley running between some of the ranges through which we can pass by going about a mile around from our course.
This stream according to measurement, twenty-five and one quarter miles above the junction of the two forks and 341 miles from Winter Quarters, by estimation. President Young named if the North Bluff Fork.
A while before we arrived here four of the brethren went to chase a few buffalo which were lying down at the foot of the bluffs, but they did not get any. Presidents Young and Kimball saw a very large rattlesnake near the river. Brother Kimball says the largest he ever saw in his life. I saw a small green snake today, very pretty, the back light green and the belly a pale yellow. Presidents Young and Kimball suffered severely with cold while riding over the bluffs to look for a road. Had to use buffalo dung for cooking. there being no timber.
Source: William Clayton's Journal
Published by the Clayton Family Association, and edited by Lawrence Clayton. To the best of our research, this contents of this book are no longer under copyright.