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icularly wrought up over this escapade.
“They’re used to the mountains,” he was assured, “and they’ll get along all right with that old mule.”
“Does anybody live over there?” asked Bob.
“No, it’s just a wild country, but the trails is good.”
“Suppose they get into trouble?”
“What trouble? And ’tain’t likely they’d all get into trouble to once.”
“I should think they’d be scared.”
“Nothin’ to be scared of,” replied the man comfortably.
Bob thought of the great, uninhabited mountains, the dark cheap nike air max forests, the immense loneliness and isolation, the thousand subtle and psychic influences which the wilderness exerts over the untried soul. There might be nothing to be scared of, as the man said. Wild animals are harmless, the trail nike air max classic s are good. But he could not imagine any of the girls with whom he had acquaintance pushing off thus joyous and unafraid into a wilderness three days beyond the farthest outpost. He had yet to understand the spirit, almost universal among the native-born Californians, that has been brought up so intimately with the large things of nature that the sublime is no longer the terrible. Perhaps this states it a little too pompously. They have learned that the mere absence of mankind is ‘nothing to be scared of’; they have learned how to be independent and to take care of themselves. Consequently, a s a matter of course, as one would ride in the park, they undertake expeditions into the Big Country.
Many of these travellers, espe nike air max 90 cially toward the close of the summer, complained bitterly of the scarcity of horse-feed. In the back country where the mountains were high and the wilderness unbroken, they depended for forage on the grasses of the mountain meadows. This year they reported that the cattle had eaten the forage down to the roots. Where usually had been abundance and pleasant camping, now were hard, close lawns, and cattle overrunning and defiling everything. Under the heavy labour of mountain travel the horses fell off rapidly in flesh and strength.
“We’re the public just as much as them cattlemen,” declaimed one grizzled veteran waving cheap nike air max his pipe. “I come to these mountains first in sixty-six, and the sheep was bad enough then, but you always had some horse meadows. Now they’re just plumb overrunning the country. There’s thousands and thousands of folks that come in camping, and about a dozen of these yere cattlemen. They got no right to hog the public land.”
With so much approval did this view meet that a delegation went to Plant’s summer quarte nike air max 95 rs to talk it over. The delegation returned somewhat red about the ears. Plant had politely but robustly told it that a supervisor was the best judge of how to run his own forest. This led to declamatory denunciation, after the American fashion, but without resulting in further activity. Resentment seemed to be about equally divided between Plant and the cattlemen as a class.
This resentment as to the latter, however, soon changed to sympathy. In September the Pollock boys stopped overnight at the Lake Meadow on nike air max 1 their way out. Their cattle, in charge of the dogs, they threw for the night into a rude corral of logs, built many years before for just that purpose. Their horses they fed with barley hay bought from Merker. Their camp they spread away from the others, near the spring. It was dark before they lit their fire. Visi nike air max sale tors sauntering over found George and Jim Pollock on either side the haphazard blaze stolidly warming through flapjacks, and occasionally settling into a firmer position the huge coffee pot. The dust and sweat of driving cattle still lay thick on their faces. A boy of eighteen, plainly the son of one of the other two, was hanging up the saddles. The whole group appeared low-spirited and tired. The men responded to the visitors by a brief nod only. The latter there-upon sat down just inside the cir nike air max cle of lamplight and smoked in silence. Presently Jim arose stiffly, frying pan in hand.
“It’s done,” he announced.
They ate in silence, consuming great quantities of half-cooked flapjacks, chunks of overdone beef, and tin-cupfuls of scalding coffee. When they had finished they thrust aside the battered tin dishes with the air of Nike TN men too weary to bother further with them. They rolled brown paper cigarettes and smoked listlessly. After a time George Pollock remarked:
“We ain’t washed up.”
The statement resulted in no immediate action. After a few moments more, however, the boy arose slowly, gathered the dishes clattering into a kettle, filled the latter with water, and set it in the fire. Jim and his brother, too, bestirred themselves, disappearing in the direction of the spring with a bar of mo Cheap Nike TN ttled soap, an old towel, and a battered pan. They returned after a few moments, their faces shining, their hair wetted and sleeked down.
“Plumb too lazy to wash up.” George addressed the silent visitors by way of welcome.
“Drove far?” asked an old ranchman.
“Twin Peaks.”
“How’s the feed?” came the inevitable cowman’s question.
“Pore, pore,” replied the mount cheap nike air max trainers aineer. “Ain’t never seen it so short. My cattle’s pore.”
“Well, you’re overstocked; that’s what’s the matter,” spoke up some one boldly.
George Pollock turned his face toward this voice.
“Don’t you suppose I know it?” he demanded. “There’s a thousand head too many on my range alone. I’ve been crowded and pushed all summer, and I ain’t got a beef steer fit to sell, right now. My cattle are so pore I’ll have to winter ’em on foothill winter feed. And in the spring they’ll be porer.”
“Well, why don’t you all get together and reduce your stock?” persisted the questioner. “Then there’ll be a show for somebody. I got three packs and two saddlers that ain’t fatted up from a two weeks’ trip in August. You got the country skinned; and that ain’t no dream.”
George Pollock turned so fiercely that his listeners shrank.
“Get together! nike tns Reduce our stock!” he snarled, shaken from the customary impassivity of the mountaineer, “It ain’t us! We got the same number of cattle, all we mountain men, that our fathers had afore us! There ain’t never been no trouble before. Sometimes we crowded a little, but we all know our people and we could fix things up, and so long as they let us be, we got along all right. It don’t _pay_ us to overstock. What for do we keep cattle? To sell, don’t we? And we can’t sell ’em unless they’re fat. Summer feed’s all we got to fat ’em on. Winter feed’s no good. You know that. We ain’t going to crowd our range. You make me tired!”
“What’s the trouble then?”
“Outsiders,” snapped Pollock. “Folks that live on the plains and just push in to summer their cattle anyhow, and then fat ’em for the market on alfalfa hay. This ain’t their country. nike air max 90 sale Why don’t they stick to their own?”
“Can’t you handle them? Who are they?”
“It ain’t they,” replied George Pollock sullenly. “It’s him. It’s the richest man in California, with forty ranches and fifty thousand head of cattle and a railroad or two and God knows what else. But he’ll come up here and take a pore man’s living away from him

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