Finally we got to Lake Quinault. We had to go about fifteen miles up the Lake being five miles long, and our cabin ten miles north of the upper end. There was no road chopped out above the lake - just a blazed trail. Chips were cut out of three trunks high enough so that they could be seen above the brush to mark the way. We had to cut our trail as we went.
Father and I had been there before and built a little log house on the creek. Now it was fall, and we had no hay or other feed for the horse and cow. There was no grass - just brush and timber, except for a small potato patch and clearing around the cabin. We packed some more of our goods in from the Lake with the horse, but he began to get thin and we had to turn him loose to forage for himself, and do the packing on our backs.
The cow and calf did alright until snow came. The dog also was getting plenty. We would catch salmon and cook it and put it in a trough for the dog. When the snow came and the cow was eating brush she saw this trough with the fish and began to eat it too. Mother felt so sorry for her that she emptied a straw tick we had, and gave her and the calves that to eat. Of course there was little nourishment in it. We managed to winter them on fish mixed with a little meal. Mother refilled the tick with moss. We raised a few potatoes that first year.
That winter we went through an experience. Mother had pulled the moss off the trees to refill the tick. She had been told that whenever there was dirt or sand in the moss, there had been water there sometime. As high as she could reach, there was dirty moss. Mother worried, knowing that if the water ever got that deep we would all drown.
It started to rain and it rained for three or four weeks, and the river got very high. Mother and Father had a bunk on the wall. I slept on the floor on some old quilts. Mother woke me up one night and said, "Bud, you better get up and go outside and see how the river is." It sounded as if it were on a rampage. Big trees came down with a bang and broke in two. I took a lantern and thought I'd walk down to the creek. We had cut some dirt steps in the bank to go down some five feet for water. Lo and behold, it was up to the top step of the creek bank.