Mile 969: Sweetwater River

“It was four miles and more from the end of the alkali stretch to the Sweetwater River—a beautiful mountain stream, swift, clear and full, which received its name from the accidental loss in its waters of a pack containing all the sugar of an early-day trading expedition. Then the travelers had drunk and bathed they went up its bank a mile to Independence Rock, the most famous of all the landmarks—the first and almost the only trail bulletin board of names and addresses that absolutely everybody had to pass. For the first time since leaving home the migration was now in one set of wheel tracks.”