Lost in the Yellowstone

Lost In the Yellowstone: Truman Everts’s Thirty Seven Days of Peril is a surprisingly engaging read. One of the best survival stories ever.


One Amazon customer review:

21ea4q50hgl_sl500_aa180_Today, being lost in Yellowstone National Park is as simple as turning on the wrong road after you lost your complimentary map or you can not locate the restroom in the Old Faithful complex. For Truman Everts, being lost in Yellowstone was a struggle between life and death. Everts’s account details his 1870 adventure in Yellowstone after finding himself separated from his travelling companions.

The separation began Everts’s thirty-seven day struggle for survival in a pre-developed Yellowstone in which Everts had to find what little food and shelter he could just to survive.

Readers will find this account to be a real-life struggle for survival reminiscent of Jack London’s fictional work. The editor, Lee Whittlesey, does a superb job of editing Everts’s story by providing the reader with additional information and the historical background of the book.

The work is also illustrated with many early day photographs of Yellowstone which provides an stunning visual account of early-day Yellowstone National Park. This book will be appreciated by anyone looking for an exciting true-life adventure story as well as historians of the American West. People who have been “lost” recently in Yellowstone will also appreciate the book, even if their modern-day adventure pales in comparison to Evert’s

His bad luck was horror show. Everything went wrong. He was treed one a night by a cougar, for example.

Almost his only food for 37-days was the root of a plant commonly known today as Everts thistle or elk thistle.

It’s a shame he could not catch fish. (He did gulp down a couple of mineral tainted minnows.)


Yellowstone photo from 1923 – National Parks Traveler

related – Yellowstone Park – Lost in the Yellowstone Wilderness: The Story of Truman Everts

related – guidebook – Yellowstone Treasures: The Traveler’s Companion to the National Park

2 Replies to “Lost in the Yellowstone”

  1. Reading this review of the book about Everts’s ordeal in the park reminded me of a delightful hike you can take in Yellowstone just across the Gardiner River valley from the mountain now named for Mr. Everts. It’s called the Beaver Ponds Loop Trail, and I’ll quote here the description of it in my complete guide to the park, “Yellowstone Treasures:
    The Traveler’s Companion to the National Park.”

    “You can start the Beaver Ponds Loop Trail at the same point as the Old Gardiner Road. A slightly steeper way to begin the loop is at Clematis Creek (it’s named for a flowering vine and pronounced KLEM-a-tus or klem-A-tus). Clematis Creek is located between Liberty Cap and the U.S. Commissioner’s stone house.
    “Although it’s billed by the park service and several hiking books as a 5-mile (8 km) trail, to complete a loop from any point in Mammoth to Beaver Ponds requires a walk of at least 6 miles (9.5 km). The long-range views, birds, wildflowers, and the ponds themselves are delightfully worth the effort, as are the contrasts that you pass between the high desert and the moist forest microclimates. Beaver (Castor canadensis) are most active from dusk to dawn, so you’re unlikely to see them in daytime, but you can see a dam they’ve built between the ponds. Incidentally, in 1996 a parkwide aerial survey found about 50 active beaver lodges in the entire park.”

    This is just one of the 58 Recommended Short Walks I list in a chart in the back of the book. You can’t do them all in one summer!

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