Page:To Alaska for Gold.djvu/29

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13
THE BOYS REACH A DECISION.

"Go to Alaska and be frozen to death, you mean," replied Earl; yet he smiled even as he spoke. "Do you know that the thermometer goes down to forty degrees below zero out there in winter?"

"Well, we're used to roughing it out here in these woods."

"These woods can't hold a candle to Alaska for barrenness. Randy. Think of a winter nine months long and ice all the year round! Uncle said in one of his other letters, that the ground never thawed out more than a few feet, excepting in favored localities."

"Do you mean to say you'll let such a splendid chance slip by?" demanded the younger lad, straightening up and looking his brother full in the face. "And let it slip, too, when we're in such trouble here?"

"No, I didn't say that. Randy. But we ought to consider the matter carefully before we make up our minds. According to the letter we'll have to spend at least two years in the gold fields."

"I'll spend ten if I call make money."

"Uncle said in that other letter that no one seemed to care to stay in the upper portion of Alaska more than two or three years at a time."

"Well, I'm in for the trip, heart and soul. Hurrah for the—what's the name of that creek?—Klondike! Hurrah for the Klondike! I wonder if it's on the map."

Randy rushed over to the little shelf which contained