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Forest, Lake and Prairie
Chapter XVIII
Enter the plains - Meet a flood - Reach Fort Carlton.

WE now caught glimpses of prairie every little while. The country was changing, the banks were becoming higher, the soil richer. We were on the divide between the swampy and rocky regions of the east and north, and the rich pastures and agricultural lands of the Saskatchewan valley. Several times as the boats were being tracked up the river, I jumped ashore and ran across land, and was delighted to breathe the air of the plains, and scent the aroma of the wild roses, and behold for myself the rich grass and richer soils of this wonderland, for I had never dreamed of such a country as was now presenting itself on every hand. Being a loyal Canadian, I was delighted with what I saw, and already began to speculate on the great possibilities of such a land as I was now entering. We passed Fort la Come, and later on the mouth of the south branch.

I remember distinctly climbing the bank near where the town of Prince Albert is now situate, and the present terminus of the Regina and Prince Albert Railway. Then it was without a single settler; but the whole land seemed to me as speaking out in strong invitation to someone to come and occupy.

When near Fort Canton, we met a fresh volume of water. Suddenly the river rose, the current strengthened, and the work became harder. The summer heat had loosened the ice and snow in the distant mountains. Fortunately for us we were near our objective point when this heavy current met us, and presently the bows of our boats were hugging the bank at the landing-place at Fort Canton.


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