“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Orofino in Clearwater County, Idaho — The American West (Mountains)

Navigating the Clearwater

Navigating the Clearwater Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Barry Swackhamer, August 16, 2020
1. Navigating the Clearwater Marker
Captions: (top left) During their travels through this area in 1805 and 1806, Lewis and Clark carefully documented their route and recorded their observations. This map, drawn along with William Clark's journal entry for October 10, 1805, shows the confluence of the "Koos Koos kee" (Clearwater) and "Ki-moo-e-nem" (Snake) rivers.; (upper center) This view of the Clearwater River, taken in the 1890s, shows the mouth of the North Fork in the middle of the photograph. Across the river from the North Fork and less than one mile from here, is Canoe Camp where the Corps of Discovery cut, shaped and hollowed five large ponderosa pine trees using the chip-and-burn method of making canoes.; (bottom center) For centuries, the Nez Perce people (Nimiipuu) regularly traveled the Clearwater River's swift waters to fish, trade and socialize, the Nimiipuu were efficient canoe builders.
Inscription.  When the Lewis and Clark Corps of Discovery entered this area in September 1805, they were not only hungry, but still anxious to locate a water route to the Pacific Ocean.
Under the direction of a Nez Perce headman, Twisted Hair, the explorers were fed and given information about the river ahead. Maps and canoes were made in preparation for the river travel to come.

Clearwater River Route

On October 7, 1805, the Lewis and Clark Corps of Discovery began their journey down the Clearwater River in five newly built dugout canoes. Twisted Hair and another Nimiipuu guide, Tetoharsky, joined the Corps on the river the next day.
After overcoming may challenges, from dangerous rapids to battered canoes and water-drenched cargo, the travelers safely reached the confluence of the Clearwater and Snake rivers near present-day Lewiston, Idaho, on October 10, 1805. Recalling the events of the day, Captain Clark wrote: "...we arrived at the head of a verry bad riffle at which place we landed...after view'g this riffle two Canoes were taken over verry well; the third Struck on a rock which took
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us an hour to get her off which was effected without her receiving a greater injurey than a Small Split in her Side which was repaired in a Short time, we purchased fish & dogs of those people, dined, and proceeded on..."

The Changing Clearwater Country.

From the alpine North Fork near the Montana border to the Snake River confluence in Lewiston, Idaho, the Clearwater River flows through changing landscapes that Lewis described as "rocky Mountains and descending once more to a level and fertile country,"
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: ExplorationWaterways & Vessels. A significant historical date for this entry is October 7, 1805.
Location. 46° 30.198′ N, 116° 20.918′ W. Marker is near Orofino, Idaho, in Clearwater County. Marker can be reached from U.S. 12 near Bobbit Bench Grade, on the left when traveling east. The marker is located at the Pink House Recreation Site. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 4815 US Highway 12, Orofino ID 83544, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Clearwater River Log Drives (here, next to this marker); Canoe Camp (approx. 0.8 miles away); Welcome to Canoe Camp (approx. 0.8 miles away); Orofino: A Fine Place (approx. 0.8 miles away); Pit House Village
Navigating the Clearwater Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Barry Swackhamer, August 16, 2020
2. Navigating the Clearwater Marker
(approx. 0.9 miles away); 1804-1806 Corps of Discovery (approx. 0.9 miles away); Ahsakha Village Site (approx. 0.9 miles away); Canoe Building Site (approx. 0.9 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Orofino.
Clearwater Crossing image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Barry Swackhamer, August 16, 2020
3. Clearwater Crossing
Credits. This page was last revised on November 7, 2020. It was originally submitted on November 7, 2020, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California. This page has been viewed 193 times since then and 60 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on November 7, 2020, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California.

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Jun. 20, 2024