EAST THROUGH WALKER PASS
Saturday, April 2, 1870 - Wednesday, April 6, 1870
Using John App’s 1870 diary entries we will follow the trail of a 49 year old man, his traveling companion named John, and three horses though the Mojave Desert from Walker Pass to Ivanpah, California in the spring of 1870 as they prospect for silver. From John’s diary descriptions we can use our historical imagination to understand what was being seen and felt along the way. The spelling is his, un-interpreted words have been replaced by underlines, and explanations are in [ ] brackets.
The diary begins at “Bridger’s House”. It is located in Walker Pass on the east side of the summit of the Sierras about 25 miles (40 km) from where the winding road they are following enters the desert at El Paso Springs. His diary entries almost always include distances, times, and comments making it easier for us to determine exactly when and where he was along the way. As a bonus, his grammar and phonetic spelling of words gives us a hint of how he spoke.
Saturday Apr 2
left Bridger’s House Traveled about 25 miles Camped at Elpaso Springs Barrel on the right Side of the road and nearly at the top of the Canion.
They are now starting east across the Mojave Desert.
Sunday Ap 3
left El Paso 7½ O’clock traveled 22 miles to Black Water Holes Missed the Panamint Holes. Black Water Holes on the left side near the road.
Monday Apr 4
Left Black Water 7 o’clock. reached Surveyors Wells at 11 a.m. Wells at the foot of Pilot Bute ½ mile up the Gulch on the right side of road. Went nearly to the head of Burnt rock Canion. traveled about 18 miles this day. Dry camp
Tuesday Apr 5
left Dry Camp about 6 a.m. arrived at Burnt Rock Springs 8½ a.m. Good water on the right side of the road on the road.
Tuesday Apr 5
left Burnt Rock Spring 9½ a.m. Arrived at Leaches Springs at 5 p.m. Traveled 22 miles this day.
Wednesday April 6th 1870
Left Leaches Springs 6½ a.m. no wind last night good water and a pleasant night arrived at Oul Springs at 11 a.m. Traveled 11 miles. left oul Springs at 12 n. arrived at Saratoga Springs 5 p.m. Traveled this day 24 miles.