THE CRUISE OF THE CORWIN
lent pasturage here for three or four months in the year.
During our last visit Dr. Rosse and I crossed the tundra to a prominent hill about seven miles to the southward from the redoubt. We found the hill to be a well-formed volcanic cone with a crater a hundred yards in diameter and about twenty feet deep, from the rim of which I counted upwards of forty others within a distance of thirty or forty miles. This old volcano is said by the medicine men to be the entrance to the spirit world for their tribe, and the rumbling sounds heard occasionally are supposed to be caused by the spirits when they are conducting in a dead Indian. The last eruption was of ashes and pumice cinders, which are strewn plentifully around the rim of the crater and down the sides of the cone.
Our walk was very fatiguing, as we sank deep in spongy moss at every step, and staggered awkwardly on the tops of tussocks of grass and sedge, which bent and let our feet down between them. It was very delightful, however, and crowded with rare beauty.
We saw a great number of birds, most of which were busy about their nests; there were ptarmigan, snipes, curlews, sand-pipers, song sparrows, titmice, loons, many species of ducks, and the Emperor goose. The ptarmigan is a