The Hard Road West: History and Geology Along the Gold Rush Trail by Keith Heyer Mendahl
Hi, I am Sarah. I am fourteen years old and an avid reader; it is one of my favorite things to do. Inspired by authors’ creations of magnificent places and surprising havens built by simple letters, I aspire to be an author and, meanwhile, nurture the love to write.
Do you know why rivers twist and turn the way they do? Do you know how continents form—how the building blocks of the earth fit together? Do you know that, fundamentally, we are all made of stardust?
Have you ever wondered about the Gold Rush—a mineral discovery that spawned a mass migration across some of most arid, inhospitable land in the nation? Have you wondered how these emigrants felt on this journey—a five-month odyssey that today would take you only about twenty-four hours to complete?
You may not be full of these questions, but The Hard Road West is full of answers. And you may be a little daunted by the pages full of diagrams and blocks of text. You may come to this book knowing nothing of emigrants, or the routes they took west; knowing nothing about rocks and how fascinating and important they are. But no matter, because this book will teach you that—and so much more.
You’ll learn that rivers love to move the same way you and I do—freely and uninhibited. You’ll learn that the ground you stand on, once upon a time, was seafloor halfway across the world—or that underneath your feet is a vast, sluggish chamber of putty-like rock. You’ll learn why our world looks the way it does and how that really impacts life around it. Most of all, you’ll learn how everything, really, is incredibly interconnected; a web of contingencies that connect all the way back to you and me.