National Geographic : 1892 May 15
134 0. W. Hayes-Expeditionthrough the Yukon District. The current is from four to six miles per hour and, except for a few sluggish expansions near the lake, is quite uniform through out. The water was exceptionally high in the spring of 1891, however, and this would tend to increase the uniformity and velocity of the current. There are no shoals or rapids which would prevent the passage of a river steamer from its mouth to the head of the lake. The course of White river, except for a short distance near its mouth, has hitherto been entirely unknown. Some miners are said to have spent a winter at the first fork, about sixty miles from the Yukon, but beyond this they have failed to penetrate, probably because of the unpromising character of the stream, for it is difficult to conceive physical obstacles sufficiently for midable to turn back these lardy explorers. The White River basin was entered by the writer fifty miles southwest of Selkirk. From the high land between the Nisling* and Donjek the main valley could be seen for a long distance north and south, with the river pursuing its extremely tortuous course among innumerable low islands and bars. At one point above the mouth of the Nisling the river passes through the point of a mountain spur by a narrow canyon, probably a case of superposed drainage due to the occupation of the valley by ice. Further northward it turns sharply toward the west and enters a deep narrow valley, in which, by native report, there are many dangerous rapids. For the first seventy miles in the White River basin only clear tributaries were crossed. The largest of these, the Nisling, prob ably drains the greater part of the large area bounded on the east by the Tahkeena and Lewes, occupying very nearly the position which Dawson has assigned for the main White river, but receiving no part of its waters from the high Coast range. Evidently the greater part of the northward-flowing drainage of the St Elias mountains is carried off by other tributaries of the White river, which show ample evidence of glacial origin in their extreme turbidity. The Donjek is the largest eastern tribu * In naming the tributaries of White river I have followed usage among the native Indians so far as possible. Some of the names required slight modification to render them pronounceable, and in most cases the generic part of the name has been dropped, as " too," meaning river, and " dek," creek. The names, however, are near enough to their indigenous forms to be recognized by the natives themselves.
1893 Feb 08
1892 Mar 31