So here we are at the Great Falls Interpretive Center, which is not their big museum as I thought, but was still very good. (Photo by Colin on Grandpa's "not best" camera.) Perhaps you recognize my sweatshirt from our freakishly cold Florida trip this winter. I look very serious in this picture. I am sure it is because I am in deep, deep thought about Lewis and Clark and not irritated because Colin has sat on another chocolate covered granola bar and now has a butt covered in snack. I did not pack enough clothes for snack sittings.
Anyway, the answer is -- yes -- the Great Falls were a problem. L&C had been told it would be a two day portage around the falls, but arrived to discover that was not just one falls but five over a 13 mile stretch. Here's another shot by Colin. Four of the falls have dams today and the fifth is under water.
Add to this that they weren't just two guys and a native woman and a canoe, but two guys, a native woman, her baby, her "husband" who won her in a poker game or something, and about 30 other guys and their stuff and their boats. Problem. It took them a month. Here's a shot from a model at the interpretive center of them lugging one of the boats uphill over the cactus and such.
In the end, it turns out I am not a huge fan of Lewis and Clark but of Sacagawea who hauled her new baby across the country with 30 guys and her loser "husband" who won her in a poker game.
I'm going to have to find her interpretive center now.