While the granitic summits of the Rocky Mountains are bleak and bare, many of the inferior ridges
are scantily clothed with scrubbed pines, oaks, cedar, and furze.
When we arrived within a short distance of the ridge
, we were stopped by a mass of tall yellow reeds, growing together as thickly as they could stand, and as tough and stubborn as so many rods of steel; and we perceived, to our chagrin, that they extended midway up the elevation we proposed to ascend.
The tension on our nerves was near the breaking point, and I doubt if any of us breathed for the few moments he held us covered by his glass; and then he lowered it and we could see him shout a command to the warriors who had passed from our sight behind the ridge
. He did not wait for them to join him, however, instead he wheeled his thoat and came tearing madly in our direction.
by the red Portillo granite (with the underlying sandstone baked by it), we may feel sure, that the greater part of the injection and upheaval of the already partially formed Portillo line, took place after the accumulation of the conglomerate, and long after the elevation of the Peuquenes ridge
. So that the Portillo, the loftiest line in this part of the Cordillera, is not so old as the less lofty line of the Peuquenes.
He informed them that Snake River ran immediately below the sierra or mountainous ridge
, upon which they were travelling; that it was free from precipices, and was at no great distance from them in a direct line; but that it would be impossible for them to reach it without making a weary circuit.
This one was Mugambi, chief of the Wagambi of Ugambi, and as he disappeared in the tangled luxuriousness of the rank growth upon the ridge
's summit only the keen eyes of the ape-man saw the direction of his flight.
We shall understand how they work, by supposing masons first to pile up a broad ridge
of cement, and then to begin cutting it away equally on both sides near the ground, till a smooth, very thin wall is left in the middle; the masons always piling up the cut-away cement, and adding fresh cement, on the summit of the ridge
By and by they came to an ice-coated ridge
which was tilted up at a sharp angle, and had a precipice on one side of it.
Notwithstanding that both Clayton and his wife kept a sharp lookout they saw nothing of larger animals, though on two occasions they had seen their little simian neighbors come screaming and chattering from the near-by ridge
, casting frightened glances back over their little shoulders, and evincing as plainly as though by speech that they were fleeing some terrible thing which lay concealed there.
The ladders were now applied, and mounted by several men; which the monkey observing, and finding himself almost encompassed, not being able to make speed enough with his three legs, let me drop on a ridge
tile, and made his escape.
I increased my pace, and after some time came to a slight ridge
, crossed it, and turned sharply, regarding it steadfastly from the further side.
On they rode, and on, until, at last, topping a ridge
, they looked down upon the fateful valley.