A twelve-year-old rendering of a scouting trip in the Northwest undertaken by Uncle Joe and the Boy in 1884, when Father was worried over the railroads' competition with his three-hundred mule hauling business. The Boy has been considered delicate until Uncle Joe takes over and sets him to rights -- as they ride through Indian country, meet a variety of threats from low-life and warring tribes. Of the four wolfers Uncle Joe outbraves, one, a Mountie deserter, survives Indian hatred for poisoning dog and game) long enough to cross their path again, trick the Boy's twenty-dollar gold piece from him, escape in chains from Fort Pitt, and meet his and with the help of Uncle Joe's six-gun, or the Assiniboines Uncle Joe and the Boy have just handily left. Uncle Joe and the Boy head for Montana without a chance to scout, but meet Father just out of Calgary, telling them to come home -- he's in the cattle business now. With its background of dark doings on a larger scale the Louis Riel rebellion was afoot) affecting the lives of the characters, this story of evil outwitted by such as Uncle Joe has a refreshing cider-tart flavor -- and can genuinely claim to appeal to boy and man alike.