What the Rugged River needs is a bridge, asserts Dan, and he follows through on Gramps' plan to build one. It's 1846 in Oregon, and everybody is crossing on the ferry run by Gramps until his death, then by fourteen-year-old Dan and his pal Pete. The boys manage until the bristly Bassett brothers start their own ferry nearby. Not knowing the river like Dan does, they run their boat onto the rocks and the two boys have to rescue them. Chucking their competitive ways, the Bassetts help Dan and Pete convince the settlers that a bridge would be more dependable and pitch into the project themselves. A trickle of a story, steady but thin.