THE BUFFALO HEAD by R. M. Patterson


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The author has managed to live a Lewis and Clark sort of life in the twentieth century; his unpretentious accounts of his journeys in the wilderness are the principal charm of his book. Apparently destined for a conventional career in banking, R.M. Patterson had done the usual tour for an Englishman of his class and era -- public school, service in the First World War, Oxford --when he threw everything over and went to live in western Canada. There, in the late twenties, he became a homesteader in Peace River country, then an explorer in the Northwest Territories, and finally a rancher in the foothills of the Rockies in southwestern Alberta. His years as owner of the Buffalo Head ranch from the bulk of the book. Even as a rancher, he was able to go off- often by himself or else with friends -- to hunt and explore in the Rockies for weeks at a time. Mr. Patterson writes in the serviceable prose of the ex-army officer ex-banker that he is, but the beauty of the natural surroundings and the drama of his isolation survive his prose. For city dwellers whose escapist thoughts run to deep woods inhabited by elk, moose, and grizzly bears, or to fields of wild flowers above the timberline, this book can be recommended.

Publisher: Morrow