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Thrilling Experience of James Templin, a Former Iowa City Boy.


May 5, 1893


The Daily Citizen, Iowa City, Iowa


Plodding on Foot over 160 Miles of Snow in Idaho to Save His Life.


Messrs. I. Furbish and James C. Cochran are in receipt of the San Francisco Chronicle, which contains the following account of a thrilling adventure of James Templin, a former Iowa City boy:


James S. Templin, a well known Idaho mining man, interested also here and in Mexico in mines, who makes his home at Salmon City but who, when winter sets in, has gold mining in Chamberlain’s basin, has arrived here after having had a very narrow call for his life. He and an associate named Barney Tolman were snowbound in the basin and, on April 11, their condition was fraught with imminent danger by the fall of thirty inches more of snow. This great amount fell in eighteen hours.


They had food remaining, but all they had for hour horses, which they had brought in over the Bitter Range with them, was ten pounds of grain.


Knowing, as Mr. Templin told last night at the Palace, that the horses could not possibly be gout out and that they would starve if left, they shot all of them and then started on a 160-mile walk over the terrible Bitter Root mountains to Elk City. To cross these mountains hey had to go to altitude of 9500 feet. Luckily they struck an old cabin on the evening of the first day, where they found four pairs of snowshoes, and, selecting what they wished, the next morning came on rapidly for sixty miles to the Salmon river. From there they footed it to a place know as Gardner’s ranch, where they got horses and rode 150 miles to Lewiston.


Mr. Templin says it was a wild trip and the weather was bad. The region from which he started in Chamberlain’s basin is the place of the great glaciers discovered last summer. He says the glaciers are numerous and of great size. The mountains about are covered with pine, spruce and fir timber. He says these mountains also are full of wild game.


He and his partner, he said, saw some moose and many elk. The moose are protected by the Idaho law, but the elk are everywhere plentiful enough in the region and need no protection. He saw many of their yards also, the places where they huddle at night or during a storm, as cattle do in a corral. Numerous wild goats were seen while en route, too, as well as some smaller game. Bears, which, he says, are plentiful, were all hibernating.


Mr. Templin comes to California often, and frequently buys good here for different mining companies which he represents. He says the salmon river gold fields, as well as those of California, are attracting much attention among Colorado mining men, and that they have been buying and bonding a number of properties lately.