9. A Personal Diary from Scotty Gall

This is a Copy of a Personal Diary written by Scotty Gall  to Mr. V. W. West, District Accountant, Hudson’s Bay Co. to account for his trip from Herschel Island to Fairbanks and return. By all accounts a very tough and long trip in arduous conditions.
Herschel Island, Feb 3rd, 1925

Dear Sir:-
The following is a general account of my trip to Fairbanks:

Party left Herschel Island on morning of 13th November, 1924. Destination, Old Crow. Party consisted of T. P. O’Kelly, C.H. Clarke, B. Johnson, E. Gall, Phillip Stanley and Ambrose. Weather, N.E. Wind, 30 degrees below. Left Herschel Island 9 A. M. ; went overland route over the Island; crossed to mainland at Flander’s Point; Proceeded to Stoke’s Point on land; arrived 5P.M.; camped Stoke’s Point.

Friday, Nov. 14th, 1924:
               Weather fine, 30 – 40 below; got up 4.30; broke camp 7 A.M.; took on extra load of tent, camp-stove and beans; arrived at Head Point 8 A.M.; Proceeded all day by creek and portage to Canoe River; camped beginning of Glacier; 35miles.

Saturday, Nov. 16th, 1924:
               Weather dull, visibility poor, warm, zero; broke camp 7 A.M.; Travelled all day Canoe River; dinner 11:30; camped 5P.M. Willows; 30 miles.

Sunday, Nov. 16th, 1924
               Weather, dull warm, south-west wind; brake camp 9 A.M.; had to wait for daylight; made portage of steep hill; returned to river; camped first timber 2 P.M.; 20 miles.

Monday, Nov. 17th, 1924
               Wind and snow, visibility poor; broke camp 6 A.M.; passed Fish Creek 7 A.M.; camped on Creek 6.30; strong wind.

Tuesday, Nov. 18th, 1924
               Strong wind, visibility poor; heavy wind in the morning; broke camp 4 A.M. camped timber 4 P.M. Fox River.

Wednesday, Nov. 19th, 1924
               Weather fine; left Black Fox Creek 7 A.M.; proceeded all day across Crow Flats; heavy going, two men ahead all the time; camped 4 P.M.

Thursday, Nov. 20th, 1924
               Dull and blowing; broke camp 7 A.M.; crossed Lakes; made tea 11 A.M. Found Trappers Trail; followed Trail afternoon; camped 5 P.M.

Friday, Nov. 21st, 1924
               Dull and blowing; broke camp 7.30 P.M.; went back 8 miles on Trapper’s Trail to cabin; proceeded on Trapper’s Trail leading toward Old Crow; made tea 11.30; afternoon: blowing hard; missed Trail; camped 6.30 P.M. on Creek.

Saturday, Nov. 22nd, 1924
               Dull and slight wind; left camp 9 A.M.; portage onto River; found Trapper’s Trail; camped 3 P.M.; timber.

Sunday, Nov. 23rd, 1924
               Broke camp daybreak; Old Crow River 12 A.M.; arrived Old Crow 3.30 P.M.

Monday, Nov. 24th, 1924
               Old Crow; rested up and fixed harness.

Tuesday, Nov. 25th, 1924
               Old Crow; fixed grub etc.

Wednesday, Nov. 26th, 1924
               Old Crow; Stanley and Phillip left for Herschel Island.

Thursday, Nov. 27th, 1924
               Weather fine; left Old Crow daybreak; party includes T.P. O’Kelly, Clarke, Johnson, Gall, Ambrose and Indian guide, (Peter); made dinner halfway; arrived Rampart House 6 P.M.; 45 miles.

Friday, Nov. 28th, 1924
               Weather fine; left Rampart House 6 A.M.; travelling all day through Ramparts on Porcupine River; arrived Old Rampart House 5 P.M.; road-house kept by Indian; 35 miles.

Saturday, Nov. 29th, 1924
               Weather fine; Left Old Rampart House 6 A.M.; stopped Trapper’s cabin for lunch; camped at John Herbert’s cabin; 35 miles.

Sunday, Nov. 30th, 1924
               Left cabin day-break; had lunch John Herbert’s trapping cabin; left river in the afternoon; portage to Shoeman House; camped; 38 miles.

Monday, Dec. 1st, 1924
               Left Shoeman House 6 A.M.; made tea 12 P.M.; passed two Trappers from Black Fox; followed their trail to cabin; camped; 30 miles.

Tuesday, Dec. 2nd, 1924
               Left Black Fox Cabin 6 A.M. followed trail all day to Fort Yukon; arrived 4 P.M.
Wednesday, Dec. 3rd, 1924
               Fort Yukon: rested dogs; cached two tents, stove, grub etc. For return trip; prepared for trip to Circle City; hired a dog at $1.00 per day to be paid on return.

Thursday, Dec 4th, 1924
               Left Fort Yukon 9 A.M.; travelled on Yukon River, made tea 1 P.M.; camped Mail cabin; 30 miles; B Moore as guide.

Friday, Dec 5th, 1924
               Broke camp 6 A.M.; left river, following new mail trail all the way to Circle; arrived 6 P.M.

Saturday, Dec 6th, 1924
               Left Circle City 6 A.M.; had coffee Ferry Road House; lunch Central Road house; stopped at Millar Road-house for the night; 50 miles.

Sunday, Dec 7th, 1924
               Pulled out of Millar Road House daybreak; crossed Eagle Divide forenoon; travelled on Eagle Creek in the afternoon; overflow; stopped at 12-mile Road-house for the night; 30 miles.
Monday, Dec 8th, 1924
               Left 12-mile road-house 8 A.M.; went over summit with fair wind; travelled all forenoon on Creek; glare ice and overflow; had lunch Faith Creek Road-house; travelled on Mail Trail all afternoon; stopped the night Half-way Roadhouse.

Tuesday, Dec 9th, 1924
               Left Half-way Roadhouse daybreak; travelled on Mail Trail 8 miles; struck the Government Road; arrived at Chateneka 12 A.M.; Stopped for lunch; left 2 P.M.; had coffee at Fox; arrived at Fairbanks about 8.30.

Party consists of E. Gall and Ambrose

Tuesday, Dec. 16th, 1924
               Weather mild; left Fairbanks 11 A.M.; heavy going all the way to Chateneka; arrived 6.30 P.M. ; 28 miles.

Wednesday, Dec 17th, 1924
               Snowing; 20 degrees below; pulled out 6 A.M.; heavy going; had lunch Half-way House; stopped Faith Creek Road House 6 P.M.

Thursday, Dec. 18th, 1924
               Snowing; pulled out 7 A.M.; running water all the way on McManus Creek (18 miles); arrived 12-mile Roadhouse 12 noon; dogs tired and men’s feet wet; decided to camp.

Friday, Dec. 19th, 1924
               Weather fine, 10 degrees below; pulled out 9 A.M.; water on Creek; crossed over Eagle Summit; had lunch William ??...... .......  ??? the night.

Saturday, Dec. 20th, 1924
               Weather cold, 40-50 degrees below; pulled out 8 A.M; had lunch 12 A.M. Ferry Road House; arrived Circle City 5 P.M.

Sunday, Dec. 21st, 1924
               Weather cold; Left Circle City 8 A.M. on new trail for Fort Yukon; camped 2 0’clock; dogs pretty tired; feet all on the bum.

Monday, Dec. 22nd, 1924
               Broke camp 4 A.M.; arrived Fort Yukon 6P.M.; dogs feet pretty sore.

Tuesday, Dec. 23rd, 1924 to Monday, Dec. 29th, 1924
               Fixed up harnesses, wrapper, grub etc. for trip north; weather averaging 50-60 degrees below; Dogs feet showing signs of improving; decided to start.

Monday, Dec. 29th, 1924
               Weather fine, 40 below; Left Fort Yukon 12 A.M.; made tea 3 P.M.; arrived Black Fox cabins 8 P.M.

Tuesday, Dec. 30th, 1924
               Weather fine, 50 below; left Black Fox cabins 7 A.M.; made tea 12 P.M.; arrived Shoeman House 3 P.M.

Wednesday, Dec. 30th, 1924
               60 below; left Shoeman House 7:30; made tea 1 P.M.; back on Porcupine River; slight head wind; dogs not working good, too cold.; camped John Herbert Place 8 P.M.

Thursday, Jan. 1st, 1925
               Blowing hard at the “Howling Dog”; decided to camp.

Friday, Jan. 2nd, 1925
               Blowing; broke camp 7 A.M.; blowing hard on River; missed the 7 mile Portage; had to do extra 20 miles through loos snow; made David Lloyds Place 3 P.M.; had tea; proceeded to Old Rampart House; arrived 7 P.M.; People were dancing there to 2 A.M.; New Year festivities; could not sleep.

Saturday, Jan. 3rd, 1925
               Ambrose feeling sick; lay over and rested dogs.

Sunday, Jan. 4th, 1925
               Left Old Rampart House 9 A.M.; Weather fine; had tea 20 miles up river; arrived New Rampart House 6 P.M.; Corp Young goinf hunting next morning; decided to lay over and try to get some meat as dogs were in poor condition.

Monday, Jan. 5th, 1925
               Weather fine; left barracks about 9 A.M.; went up a creek about 5 miles; no signs of caribou; walked around on snow-shoes till dark; going home picked up two carcasses Young had shot some days previous; bought meat from him at 10c per pound; gave dogs a good meal.

Tuesday, Jan. 6th, 1925
               Fed up the dogs on deer meat; lay over; 60 below.

Wednesday, Jan. 7th, 1925
               65 below; left Rampart House 6 A.M. dogs not working good, too cold; had to break trail half the way; arrived Old Crow 6 P.M.; find that all the men have gone out deer-hunting; Ambrose did not come saying it was too cold to travel.

Thursday, Jan. 8th, 1925
               50 below; Old Crow; Ambrose arrived 4 P.M.

Friday, Jan. 9th, 1925
                              30 below; Neel McDonald returned today with 3 carribou; guide wants to go Monday.

Saturday, Jan. 10th, 1925
                              40 below; fixed up harness, sled etc.

Sunday, Jan. 11th, 1925
               50 below; rustled up fish for dog-feed; find out that guide’s Parka and duffles will not be ready till Tuesday so have postponed departure until then.

Monday, Jan. 12th, 1925
               50 below; loaded up sleds;

Tuesday, Jan. 13th, 1925
               60 below; left Old Crow accompanied by Indian guide (David Elias) about 10 A.M.; travelled on Trapper’s Trail; made tea 2 P.M.; camped 6 P.M. Trapper’s Tent; 30 miles.

Wednesday, Jan. 14th, 1925
               Cold; left camp 8 A.M. ; made tea 12 A.M.; camped 4 P.M.; at Trapper’s cabin; lost timber.

Thursday, Jan. 15th, 1925
               2 A.M. – wind blowing hard.
               8 A.M. – wind blowing hard.
               Decided to camp; 10 P.M. wind still blowing hard; developed into a hurricane.

Friday, Jan. 16th, 1925
               Blowing harder than ever; no protection after leaving timber; wind died down a bit towards evening.

Saturday, Jan. 16th, 1925
               Wind still blowing; decided to go as our dog-feed was getting low; wind develops into a hurricane; forced to camp out of our way.

Sunday, Jan. 17th, 1925
               4:30 P.M.; wind blowing hard all day; died down about 10 P.M.; feeding dogs ½ a dry fish.

Monday, Jan.18th, 1925
               Clear and cold; made the top of Arctic Divide; camped timber.

Tuesday, Jan. 19th, 1925
               Broke camp 4:30; travelled all day and night; missed our way; arrived on the coast at King Point about 1 A.M. Wednesday morning; made for Head Point; arrived there about 5 A.M.; proceeded to Herschel Island; arrived there about 3 P.M.

Attached, please find account of monies expended by me on the above mentioned trip.
                                                                                                         Yours respectfully,

                                                                                                         Ernest J Gall

The route was 560 miles each way. 1120 miles return

MAP OF ROUTE (Click on MAP to see complete map):

10. Angulaik - Kitikmeot Heritage Society writings

Here is a link to the  Angulaik  - Kitikmeot Heritage Society Web page that writes about Scotty Gall and his achievements in the North of Canada.
CLICK HERE to go to the page.