A new role for the popular mystery writer, as he explores frontiers still available, and proves they are there for those who are tough enough. It is a delightful book with a charm all its own, well written and exciting reading. The code of the desert decries asking questions, so he has gone about his research and secured colorful and dramatic information in the process. His ""camp wagon"" was a cabin on wheels. He prowled remote by ways, and came to know and love the calm tranquility of the desert, its contradictions, its cruelty. He realized the hardships early prospectors had endured, the bitter starvation diet and shortage of water. A man cannot make a mistake a second time on the desert. Gardner was writing Western and desert stories, and for authentic background, teamed up with veteran prospectors and experienced plenty of adventure. One involved the fabulous Lost Dutchman mine; he came across a potential bonanza in the Lost Arch Mine, twice discovered, twice lost. Strange jokers turned up:- an able bodied seaman from Capetown; a graceful, gifted extemporaneous liar (shortly escaped from an insane asylum), and others. This covers a wide swathe of territory from Arizona, New Mexico and parts of California to the Northwest. Superb personal adventure on the part of a writer who needs no introduction. Surely popular.