A Horse Who Wore Snow Shoes
Mr. Brown had to go to his camp at Pine Tree Valley, which is in the midst of the mountains in California.
His men were cutting down the giant trees, and piling them in readiness for the Spring freshet, or floods of the river, when the snows melted. Then they would slide them down the mountain sides to the little villages below.
There was a great deal of snow on the mountains, and Mr. Brown knew it would be hard work climbing to the camp, but Lady Gray was strong, and used to it.
Lady Gray was Mr. Brown’s pet horse, and carried him everywhere. She was always happy when her master was in the saddle.
But to-day the snow was very deep and soon Mr. Brown had to get off, throw away the saddle, and lead her. They had to stop very often, and lean against the trees and rocks for support, while they rested and regained their breath.
In places the snow was so deep and soft, that they sank above their knees. Late in the afternoon they reached the camp nearly exhausted, and it was several days before they were able to return.
The snow was still deep and Mr. Brown knew he must go back on snow-shoes, but he was afraid Lady Gray would have to be left behind.
Finally one of the men suggested making her some snow-shoes. They cut four round pieces of board, twelve inches across, and fastened them on with rope. Lady Gray seemed to understand what they were for and tried very hard to walk in them.
She was very awkward at first and could hardly stand up, but by practicing a little every day she was soon able to manage nicely.
So Mr. Brown and Lady Gray both returned on snow-shoes, and how every one did laugh when they saw them.
But Lady Gray never could have done it if she had not tried.