Page:To Alaska for Gold.djvu/27

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11
THE BOYS REACH A DECISION.

camp known as Dawson City had been started. They said that there were about a dozen small creeks flowinsr into the Klondike and into the Yukon at this point, and that it was reported and proved that the entire district was rich with gold.

"I was chary of believing the men at first, for I know only too well how many wild-cat reports start up in every mining camp. But a couple of days later I heard another report from Juneau, Alaska, to the effect that several miners had come down from this same territory by way of the lakes and Chilkoot Pass, and had brought with them over thirty-five thousand dollars in nuggets and gold dust, taken out of a place called Hunker's Creek, which runs into the Klondike.

"From these reports, and from others which are floating around, I am convinced that they have at last struck the rich vein of yellow metal which I always believed would be located there, and I am now making preparations to try my luck again in that territory, and if you two boys want to go along and think you can stand the climate, which is something awful for nine months in the year, I'll see you through. I do not know how you are fixed for cash, but I have been lucky in Colorado, and I will pay all expenses, providing you will agree to remain with me for two years, working as I work, for a one-half interest in all our discoveries—that is, a one-quarter interest to each of you and a one-half interest to myself. The expense of a year's trip to Alaska by