Lewis and Clark's Columbia River
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Lewis & Clark's Columbia River - "200 Years Later"
"Critter Cutouts ... Horsethief Lake State Park (Columbia Hills State Park), Washington"
Includes ... Horsethief Lake State Park ... Columbia Hills State Park ...
Image, 2011, Horsethief Lake State Park, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
"Connie the Cougar", Horsethief Lake State Park (Columbia Hills State Park). Image taken September 28, 2011.


Critter Cutouts ...
Scattered throughout Horsethief Lake State Park (now Columbia Hills State Park) are large wooden painted black cutouts of wild creatures. From information provided by the Columbia Hills State Park --- there are SEVEN cutout creatures ... 1) "Connie the Cougar" ... 2) "Oscar the Owl" ... 3) "Sam and Sally Squirrel" ... 4) "Ricky the Raccoon" ... 5) "Mr. & Mrs. Spruce Goose" ... 6) "Paula the Possum" ... and 7) "Wally the Bear". The cutouts are part of the park's "Junior Ranger" program.

Image, 2011, Horsethief Lake State Park, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
"Connie the Cougar", Horsethief Lake State Park (Columbia Hills State Park). Image taken September 28, 2011.
Image, 2011, Horsethief Lake State Park, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
"Connie the Cougar", Horsethief Lake State Park (Columbia Hills State Park). Image taken September 28, 2011.
Image, 2011, Horsethief Lake State Park, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
"Oscar the Owl", Horsethief Lake State Park (Columbia Hills State Park). Image taken September 28, 2011.
Image, 2011, Horsethief Lake State Park, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
"Sam or Sally Squirrel", Horsethief Lake State Park (Columbia Hills State Park). There are really two Squirrel cutouts, even though we only found one. Image taken September 28, 2011.
Image, 2011, Horsethief Lake State Park, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
"Ricky the Raccoon", Horsethief Lake State Park (Columbia Hills State Park). Image taken September 28, 2011.
Image, 2011, Horsethief Lake State Park, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
"Mr. & Mrs. Spruce Goose", Horsethief Lake State Park (Columbia Hills State Park). Image taken September 28, 2011.
Image, 2011, Horsethief Lake State Park, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
"Paula the Possum", Horsethief Lake State Park (Columbia Hills State Park). Image taken September 28, 2011.
Image, 2011, Horsethief Lake State Park, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
"Wally the Bear", Horsethief Lake State Park (Columbia Hills State Park). Image taken September 28, 2011.


From the Journals of Lewis and Clark ...

Clark, October 24, 1805 ...
The first pitch of this falls [Celilo Falls] is 20 feet perpendicular, then passing thro' a narrow Chanel for 1 mile to a rapid of about 18 feet fall below which the water had no perceptable fall but verry rapid ...     It may be proper here to remark that from Some obstruction below, the cause of which we have not yet learned, the water in high fluds (which are in the Spring) rise <nearly> below these falls nearly to a leavel with the water above the falls; the marks of which can be plainly trac'd around the falls. at that Stage of the water the Salmon must pass up which abounds in Such great numbers above- below thos falls are Salmon trout and great numbers of the heads of a Species of trout Smaller than the Salmon. those fish they catch out of the Salmon Season, and are at this time in the act of burrying those which they had drid for winter food. ...    Capt Lewis and three men crossed the river and on the opposit Side to view the falls which he had not yet taken a full view of-     At 9 oClock a. m. I Set out with the party and proceeded on down a rapid Stream of about 400 yards wide at 2 1/2 miles the river widened ito a large bason to the Stard. Side on which there is five Lodges of Indians. here a tremendious <heigh> black rock Presented itself high and Steep appearing to choke up the river [the future Browns Island] nor could I See where the water passed further than the Current was drawn with great velocity to the Lard Side of this rock at which place I heard a great roreing. I landed at the Lodges and the natives went with me to the top of this rock which makes from the Stard. Side; from the top of which I could See the dificuelties we had to pass for Several miles below; at this place the water of this great river is compressed into a Chanel [the "Short Narrows" or Tenmile Rapids] between two rocks not exceeding forty five yards wide and continues for a 1/4 of a mile when it again widens to 200 yards and continues this width for about 2 miles when it is again intersepted by rocks. This obstruction in the river accounts for the water in high floods riseing to Such a hite at the last falls. The whole of the Current of this great river must at all Stages pass thro' this narrow chanel of 45 yards wide. as the portage of our canoes over this high rock would be impossible with our Strength, and the only danger in passing thro those narrows was the whorls and Swills arriseing from the Compression of the water, and which I thought (as also our principal watermen Peter Crusat) by good Stearing we could pass down Safe, accordingly I deturmined to pass through this place notwithstanding the horrid appearance of this agitated gut Swelling, boiling & whorling in every direction (which from the top of the rock did not appear as bad as when I was in it;[)] however we passed Safe to the astonishment of all the Inds: of the last Lodges who viewed us from the top of the rock [this high rock became Browns Island when the waters of Lake Celilo inundated the valley]. passed one Lodge below this rock and halted on the Stard. Side to view a verry bad place, the Current divided by 2 Islands of rocks the lower of them large and in the middle of the river, this place being verry bad I Sent by land all the men who could not Swim and Such articles as was most valuable to us Such as papers Guns & amunition, and proceeded down with the Canoes two at a time to a village of 20 wood housies in a Deep bend to the Stard. Side [area of Horsethief Butte and Horsethief Lake] below which a rugid black rock about <the> 20 feet hiter <of> than the Common high fluds of the river with Several dry Chanels which appeared to Choke the river up quite across; this I took to be the 2d falls or the place the nativs above call timm, The nativs of this village reived me verry kindly, one of whome envited me into his house, ...    I dispatched a Sufficent number of the good Swimers back for the 2 canoes above the last rapid and with 2 men walked down three miles to examine the river Over a bed of rocks, which the water at verry high fluds passes over, on those rocks I Saw Several large Scaffols on which the Indians dry fish; as this is out of Season the poles on which they dry those fish are tied up verry Securely in large bundles and put upon the Scaffolds, I counted 107 <Scaff> Stacks of dried pounded fish in different places on those rocks which must have contained 10,000 w. of neet fish, The evening being late I could not examine the river to my Satisfaction, the Chanel is narrow and compressed for about 2 miles [the "Long Narrows" or Fivemile Rapids], when it widens into a deep bason to the Stard. Side ["Big Eddy", today the location of Spearfish Lake], & again contracts into a narrow chanel divided by a rock [head of Threemile Rapids] I returned through a rockey open countrey infested with pole-cats to the village where I met with Capt. Lewis the two old Chiefs who accompanied us & the party & canoes who had all arrived Safe; the Canoes haveing taken in Some water at the last rapids. here we formed a Camp near the Village [near Horsethief Butte and Horsethief Lake] ...






Clark, April 19, 1806 ...
We deturmined to make the portage to the head of the long narrows [Fivemile Rapids, now under the waters of Lake Celilo] with our baggage and 5 Small Canoes, the 2 large Canoes we Could take no further and therefore Cut them up for fuel [at their camp near Spearfish Lake]. we had our Small Canoes drawn up very early and employed all hands in transporting our baggage on their backs and by means of 4 pack horses, over the portage. This labour we had accomplished by 3 P. M. and established our Camp a little above the present Skillute village [near Horsethief Butte] which has been removed as before observed a fiew hundred yards lower down the river than when we passed it last fall. I left Capt L. at the bason [Spearfish Lake] and proceeded to the village early this morning with a view to recive the horses which were promised to be brought this morning for articles laid by last evining. in the Course of this day I purchased four horses at the Village, and Capt Lewis one at the bason before he left it. after the baggage was all Safely landed above the portage, all hands brought over the Canoes at 2 lodes which was accomplished by 5 P. M. as we had not a Sufficiency of horses to transport our baggage <I do> we agreed that I should proceed on to the Enesher villages at the great falls of the Columbia [Celilo Falls] and if possible purchase as maney horses as would transport the baggage from that place, and rid us of the trouble and dificuelty of takeing our Canoes further. I set out with Serjt Pryor, Geo Shannon Peter Crusat & Labiech at half past 5 P. M. for the Enesher Village [vicinity of Wishram] at which place I arrived at 8 P. M. Several Showers of rain in the after part of to day, and the S W wind very high. there was great joy with the nativs last night in consequence of the arrival of the Salmon; one of those fish was cought, this was the harbenger of good news to them. They informed us that those fish would arive in great quantities in the Course of about 5 days. this fish was dressed and being divided into Small pieces was given to each Child in the village. this Custom is founded on a Supersticious opinion that it will hasten the arrival of the Salmon. ...    The long narrows [Fivemile Rapids] are much more formadable than they were when we decended them last fall, there would be no possibility of passing either up or down them in any vessel at this time.

I entered the largest house of the Eneeshers village [near Wishram] in which I found all the enhabitents in bead. they rose and made a light of Straw, they haveing no wood to burn. many men Collected. we Smoked and I informed them that I had come to purchase a fiew horses of them. they promused to Sell me Some in the morning.





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*River Miles [RM] are approximate, in statute miles, and were determined from USGS topo maps, obtained from NOAA nautical charts, or obtained from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers website, 2003

Sources: Columbia Hills State Park information handout, 2011;

All Lewis and Clark quotations from Gary Moulton editions of the Lewis and Clark Journals, University of Nebraska Press, all attempts have been made to type the quotations exactly as in the Moulton editions, however typing errors introduced by this web author cannot be ruled out; location interpretation from variety of sources, including this website author.
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September 2011