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"a pickerel!" cried snap, "and a beauty" — Page 67.
OF THE LAKE
Out With Rod and Gun
CAPTAIN RALPH BONEHILL
AUTBOR OF " FOUR BOY HUNTERS," " GUNS AND SNOWSHOES," " WITH
BOONE ON THE FRONTIER," ETC.
CUPPLES & LEON COMPANY
BOY HUNTERS SERIES
By Captain Ralph Bonehill
12 mo. Illustrated.
FOUR BOY HUNTERS
Or The Outing of the Gun Club
GUNS AND SNOWSHOES
Or The Winter Outing of the Young Hunters
YOUNG HUNTERS OF THE LAKE
Or Out with Rod and Gun
( Other volumes in preparation )
Copyright, 1908, by
CuppLES & Leon Company
Young Hunters of the Lake
Printed in U. S. A.
I. Four Lively Boys i
II. Swimming, and What Followed .... 9
III. A Trick That Failed 17
IV. The Story of a Ghost 25
V. A Fourth of July Celebration 33
VI. Preparing for the Grand Outing .... 41
VII. At the Boathouse 49
VIII. How Two Prowlers Were Treated .... 56
IX. The First Day of the Outing 64
X. The Story of a Strange Disappearance . . 72
XL A Search for a Rowboat . 80
XII. The Camp on Lake Cameron 88
XIII. In the Camp of the Enemy 96
XIV. Delayed by a Storm 104
XV. Lost in the Swamp 112
XVI. The Rescue of Giant 120
XVII. On Lake Narsac at Last 128
XVIII. The Old Hermit's Tale 136
XIX. A Dangerous Deer Hunt 144
XX. The Mysterious Voice 152
XXI. In Which the Enemy Appears Again . . 160
XXII. A Lively Time in the Dark . . . . . .168
XXIII. The Loss of the Raft 176
XXIV. Out on a Sand; Bar 184
XXV". Jed Sanborn Brings News 192
XXVL A Hunt After Wildcats 200
XXVII. Into a Bears' Den 208
XXVIII. The Caves in the Mountain 216
XXIX. Visited by the Ghost 224
XXX. The Secret of the Mysterious Voice . . . 232
XXXI. The Last of the Ghost — Conclusion . . 242
YOUNG HUNTERS OF THE
FOUR LIVELY BOYS
" Boys, Vm going swimming. Who is going
" Count me in, Snap,'' answered Shep Reed.
" Swimming? " came from a third youth of the
crowd of four. " Why, you couldn't keep me
away if you tried. I've been waiting for a swim
for about eleven years — "
" And a day," broke in a small, stout youth.
*^ Don't forget the day. Whopper, if you want to
be really truthful.
" All right, put in the day," cheerfully assented
the lad called Whopper, because of his propensity
to exaggerate when speaking. " Of course you'll
go, too, Giant?" he added, questioningly.
" Will I ? " answered the small youth. '' Will a
duck swim and a cow eat clover? To be sure I'll
2 YOUNG HUNTERS OF THE LAKE
go. But I'll have to run home first and tell
" I'll have to go home, too," said the lad called
Snap. " But I can be back here in a quarter of an
*' Where shall we go? " asked Shep Reed.
" I was thinking of going up to Lane's Cove,"
answered Snap Dodge.
" Lane's Cove ! " cried the smallest youth of the
" Yes. Isn't that a nice place ? "
" Sure it is, but don't you know that Ham Spink's
father has bought all the land around there? "
"What of that. Giant?"
" Maybe he won't let us go swimming on his
property — because of the trouble we had with
" Oh, I don't believe he'll see us," came from
the boy called Whopper. " Why, I've been swim-
ming at the cove a thousand times, and nobody
ever tried to stop me."
" If he orders us away we can go,'* said Shep
Reed. " I know he is just mean enough to do it."
" Is Ham home yet? " asked one of the boys.
" No, but I heard he was going to come home as
soon as that boarding school shut up for the sum-
FOUR LIVELY BOYS 3
" Wonder if he'll try to make more trouble? "
" If he does he'd better watch out, or he'll get
into hot water," said Shep Reed; and then the boys
separated, to get their swimming outfits and tell
their folks what they proposed to do.
The boys lived in the town of Fairview, a coun-
try place, located on the Rocky River, about ten
miles above a fine sheet of water called Lake Cam-
eron. The town boasted of a score of stores, sev-
eral churches, a hotel, and a neat railroad station at
which, during the summer months, as high as ten
trains stopped daily. On the outskirts of the town
were a saw mill, a barrel factory, and several other
To those who have read the two former books
in this series, entitled, " Four Boy Hunters " and
" Guns and Snowshoes," the lads getting ready for
a swim will need no special introduction. The
lad called Snap was Charley Dodge, the son of one
of the most influential men of that neighborhood,
who was a school trustee and also part owner of
the saw mill and a large summer hotel. Charley
was a brave and wide-awake youth and was often
looked up to as a leader by the others. Where his
nickname of Snap had originated it would be hard
to say, although he was as full of snap and ginger
as a shad is full of bones.
4 YOUNG HUNTERS OF THE LAKE
Sheppard Reed, always called Shep for short,
was the son of a well-known physician, a boy who
loved outdoor life, and one who was as strong as
he was handsome. He and Snap had been chums
for many years, and as a consequence were occa-
sionally known as the twins, although they were
no relation to each other.
Frank Dawson had moved to Fairview about
three years before this tale opens. He was a merry
lad, with laughing eyes, and his method of exag-
gerating had speedily gained for him the nickname
of Whopper. But Frank was withal a truthful
lad — his " whoppers '* being of the sort meant to
deceive nobody. Even his mother could not make
him give up his extravagant speech. Once when
she spoke about it he gravely replied :
" I know it IS wrong, mother, but I simply can't
stop it. Why, IVe made up my mind over a mil-
lion times to — '*And then he broke down, and
his mother had to laugh in spite of herself.
The smallest lad of the four was Will Caslette,
always called Billy or Giant. He was the son of
a widow lady, who owned a small but neat cottage
on one of the side streets of the town. Mrs. Cas-
lette thought the world of her offspring and Giant
was fully worthy of the affection she bestowed upon
him. Although small in size he was manly in his
FOUR LIVELY BOYS 5
deportment, and at school he was as bright as any-
one in his class.
About a year before, the four boys had organ-
ized an outing or gun club and obtained permission
to go camping for a few weeks in the vicinity of
Lake Cameron. They reached the lake after sev-
eral adventures and settled down in a comfortable
camp, from which, however, they were driven by a
saw mill owner named Andrew Felps, who ran a
rival concern to that in which Snap's father owned
an interest. The young hunters then moved to
Firefly Lake, a mile away, and there hunted and
fished to their hearts' content. They were fre-
quently joined by old Jed Sanborn, a trapper who
lived in the mountains between the lakes. They
had some trouble with Ham Spink, a dudish young
man of the town, who established a rival camp not
far off, and they came close to perishing during a
disastrous forest fire.
The summer outing made the boys hungry for
more, and as soon as the winter holidays were at
hand they made arrangements to go into the woods
again, this time taking their outfits on sleds. They
had with them their snowshoes, and found the lat-
ter articles very useful when out after game. They
fixed up a comfortable camp, and rescued a half-
frozen tramp. But the tramp did not appreciate
6 YOUNG HUNTERS OF THE LAKE
what had been done for him and ran away with
some of their things, which brought on a lively pur-
suit. Then the boys had more trouble with Ham
Spink and his crony, Carl Dudder. In the end it
was discovered that Ham and Carl had gotten the
tramp to annoy the young hunters, and as a result
Mr. Spink and Mr. Dudder had to foot some
heavy bills for their sons. Ham and Carl were
sent off to a strict boarding school, where their par-
ents hoped they would turn over a new leaf. Snap
and his chums came back home loaded down with
" The best outing ever ! " declared more than
one of the boys.
" We'll have to go again I "
And then and there they began to plan what to
do during the next vacation.
" IVe got an idea,'' said Snap, one day, during
the spring. *' Why not get a good boat — one
that will stand some hard knocks — and go through
Lake Cameron and Firefly Lake to Lake Narsac?
Jed Sanborn was telling me that was a fine place for
hunting and fishing, and the lake is as clear as
" It's an awfully wild place, so I was told," said
FOUR LIVELY BOYS 7
" About a million snakes up there, so I once
heard," put in Whopper. " Snakes are so thick
you have to kick 'em out of your way to walk
" Excuse me, I don't want any snakes," an-
swered Giant, with a shiver.
" Somebody once told me the lake was haunted,"
said Snap. *' But of course that wouldn't scare us
— we are not afraid of ghosts, are we? "
" No ! " came from all of the others promptly.
" The ghost that tries to scare me will get his
ear pinched," added Giant, and said this so drolly
that all had to laugh.
" One thing is sure," said Shep, after a pause,
*' with fish, game, snakes and ghosts we'd certainly
find enough to interest us, eh? "
*' Is the lake very deep? " asked Giant.
" Jed Sanborn told me that you can't touch bot-
tom in some places," answered Snap. " The lake
lies right between three tall mountains. He said
we might have to carry our boat around some of
the rocks in the stream leading to it."
" Well, we can do that to — providing the boat
isn't too heavy."
This talk led to many others, and In the end It
was decided that the four boys should start on the
trip the week following the Fourth of July. Then
8 YOUNG HUNTERS OF THE LAKE
commenced active preparations. Guns were
cleaned, camping outfits overhauled, and the lads
looked around for just the right boat in which to
make the trip. Through Mr. Dodge a fine, strong
craft was obtained; and then the lads waited Im-
patiently for the day to come when they should be-
gin the outing on the lake. They anticipated some
adventures, but did not dream of the curious hap-
penings in store for them.
SWIMMING, AND WHAT FOLLOWED
Lane's Cove was situated almost a mile from
Fairview, but the four boys did not think anything
of walking that distance. All were good pedes-
trians, for their numerous putings had hardened
their muscles and given them good lung power.
Even little Giant trudged along as swiftly as the
rest and even suggested a race when they came in
sight of the spot selected by Snap for the after-
"No, don't run — you'll get overheated," said
Whopper. " When I run I sweat like a house
" Sweating like a house afire is good ! " mur-
mured Giant, with a grin. " Now if you had only
said sweat like a stone, or a piece of iron, all of us
would have known what you meant. As it is — "
And then he stopped and ducked, to escape the
piece of dried mud Whopper playfully shied at him.
The cove reached, the boys speedily found a spot
that suited them. It was at a point where some
lo YOUNG HUNTERS OF THE LAKE
overhanging bushes and trees sheltered a strip of
sandy shore. At one point a rock ran out Into the
river, making an excellent place from which to dive.
The lads hustled Into the bushes and In a very
few minutes Snap appeared In his bathing outfit and
was followed by Shep.
" Beat you In ! " cried the doctor's son, but
hardly had he spoken when Snap made a leap and
landed Into the river with a loud splash. Shep
came after him, and both disappeared under the
surface, to come up a second later, thrashing
" Whew! it Isn't so warm as I thought! " ejac-
ulated Shep. "No Turkish bath about this!''
And he gave a slight shiver.
" You'll soon get used to it," replied Snap.
" It's always the first plunge that takes the breath
out of a fellow."
Giant came in next, diving from the rock.
Whopper followed more slowly, putting in first
one foot and then the other.
" Moses in the bulrushes ! " he gasped. ** Say,
this water is about half ice, isn't it?" And he
drew back again.
" Whopper, you know better than to go In that
way," remonstrated Snap. " Wet your face and
then go in head first — it's the only right way. If
SWIMMING, AND WHAT FOLLOWED ii
you go in by Inches you'll gasp fit to turn your
Very gingerly Whopper wet his face. As the
water ran down his backbone he let out another
" Don't know as I'll go In," he observed. " I
thought It would be much warmer."
*' Oh, yes, come in," urged Snap.
In the meantime Shep had come to shore and
crawled out, behind some bushes. Softly he crept
up behind Whopper. Then came a sudden shove,
and over went Frank with a loud yell and a splash
that sent the spray In all directions. Before he
came up Shep was out of sight behind a tree.
" Say, wh — who — " spluttered Whopper, as
he came up and gazed around half angrily. Then
he caught sight of a shoulder back of the tree.
" Come out of that, and let me give you some-
thing to remember me by ! " And he struck out
But Shep had no Intention of being caught, and
as Whopper came out he sprang In. Then Frank
came after him, and a race ensued. In which Snap
and Giant joined. The rapid swimming warmed
all the boys, and then they declared the water
*' just O. K.," as Snap expressed It. Whopper
watched his chance to get even with Shep, and when
12 YOUNG HUNTERS OF THE LAKE
the other was not looking, dove down and caught
the doctor's son by the foot. Shep was just shout-
ing to Giant and had his mouth wide open, and as
a consequence swallowed a lot of water. When
he and Whopper came up they indulged in a
splashing contest lasting several minutes.
" What's the matter with swimming across the
river?" suggested Snap, presently.
" It's a pretty good distance," answered Giant.
** And you must remember the current is rather
" I'll go, Snap," said Shep, who was always
ready to follow his *' twin."
" I don't think I'll try it to-day," put in Whop-
per. " I'll stay on this side with Giant. If you
find anything good to eat over there bring it
along," he added.
" Might find some berries," said Snap.
At this point the river, from the outer edge of
the cove, was about a hundred yards wide. The
boys had frequently swum across, so Snap's pro-
posal to go over was nothing unusual. Side by
side the boys started cut and took their time.
They did not attempt to stem the current but al-
lowed it to carry them down the river for several
hundred feet. They landed where there was an
SWIMMING, AND WHAT FOLLOWED 13
old orchard, backed up by a large strawberry
*' No apples ripe around here," said Snap, as
he and his chum walked up the river bank, to a
point opposite where they had left Giant and
" Let us go over to the strawberry patch," sug-
gested Shep. *' We may find some strawberries
As nobody was in sight, the proposition was
readily accepted, and the boys picked their way
carefully along, for they had no desire to hurt
their bare feet. Reaching the patch, they began a
hunt and soon discovered a corner where the ber-
ries were thick and sweet.
" Say, this is prime ! " observed the doctor's son,
smacking his lips. " This would suit Giant and
Whopper to a T ! "
" Wonder if we can carry any over to them,
" I don't see why not. A little water won't
hurt them. In fact they ought to be washed, thej
are that full of sand."
" Who owns this patch? "
" Old Tom Ashenbury."
" Well, we had better keep out of his sight, or
14 YOUNG HUNTERS OF THE LAKE
he'll be after us with his gun. Don't you remem-
ber how he chased us once, when we were walking
through his peach orchard?"
" Indeed I do. But we are doing little harm
here. In a few days all these berries will be rot-
ten. I guess he has given up picking them.''
In moving around the boys had found a couple
of old berry baskets, and these they now pro-
ceeded to fill. The task was about half completed
when Snap suddenly straightened up.
" What was that ? " he asked.
** What? " demanded his chum.
" I thought I heard a cry from across the river.'*
Both listened, but nothing came to their ears.
" You must have been mistaken," said the doc-
tor's son, and resumed his work of picking straw-
" No use of picking more," said Snap, a few
minutes later. ** We'll be lucky to get over with
these. Perhaps we'll drop half of them, trying
" HI, look there ! " shouted his companion, and
pointed across the field in the direction of the river.
A flock of sheep had suddenly appeared, some
fifteen or twenty in number. At the head was a
large ram, who gazed in wonder at the two boys
in their bathing outfits. «
SWIMMING, AND WHAT FOLLOWED 15
"Say, that ram means business!" ejaculated
Snap, an instant later. " We had better clear out
'* Come on, I'm willing," responded the doc-
tor's son, and started for the stream, carrying the
basket of strawberries in one hand.
" Let us go up the stream," went on Snap.
" No use of getting too close to him. I don't like
Both boys had good cause to feel alarmed,
for the ram was coming toward them on a trot.
Once or twice he stopped and pawed the ground,
but then he came on, and they could see he meant
to attack them.
" He's coming for us ! "
" Can we reach the river! "
" We must reach it! "
Then the two boys broke into a run, giving
no further heed to the fact that the ground was
uneven and that their feet were bare. They had
heard stories of vicious rams many times, and
knew that only the year before a girl had been al-
most mauled to death by such an animal.
They had still fifty yards I0 cover when Snap
went into a hole and pitched W^adlong. Shep was
directly behind him, and over he went on top of
his chum, crushing one of tl?^ baskets of straw-
i6 YOUNG HUNTERS OF THE LAKE
berries between them. The other basket was scat-
tered in all directions over the ground.
" There go our berries," grumbled Snap.
" Get up ! " roared Shep, scrambling to his feet.
" Here comes the ram, and he's as wild as theyj
make 'em ! "
He caught his chum by the arm, and both tried
to go on. But Snap's ankle had received a bad
wrench and he was forced to limp.
The boys had to pass a low shed, used occa-
sionally for the storage of fruit and baskets. As
they reached this the ram came up and lowered
" Jump for the shed ! " yelled Shep, and caught
hold of the roof of the structure. He scrambled
to the top and gave his chum a hand. Then on
came the ram and hit the side of the frail building
a resounding whack with his head. Snap escaped
by less than a foot; and then both boys stood up-
right on the top of the shed wondering what they
had best do next.
A TRICK THAT FAILED
** We are In a pickle, Snap."
" It certainly looks like it, Shep."
" How long do you suppose that ram is going
to keep us here? "
** I don't know — maybe you'd better ask him."
*^ I wouldn't feel quite so bad if I had on my
regular clothing and my shoes. But with this
thin outfit — "
" Here he comes again ! " was the cry, and
crash ! the head of the ram struck the shed once
more, causing it to tremble greatly.
" I really think he's trying to knock the old
thing down 1 " was the comment of the doctor's
The boys tried to look across the river, but
could not because of a heavy clump of bushes
growing between the shed and the water's edge.
They heard a distant cry and wondered what it
.j8 young hunters OF THE LAKE
" I believe that is Giant and Whopper calling,"
" More than likely they are tired of waiting for
us. Maybe they are dressing.'*
A few of the sheep had come up and were
gazing curiously at the boys and the ram. Then
the ram commenced to walk around the shed, view-
ing it speculatively from all sides.
" Looks like a warrior, doesn't he? " said Shep.
** Wish I had a brickbat to throw at him."
" Here's a short board ! " cried Snap, and tore
off a piece that was partly loose. " I wish I could
reach him with this."
" Wait, I'll coax him over," answered the doc*
tor's son, and put down a leg over the edge of the
roof. At once the ram charged, and as he did this
Snap threw the board at him, hitting him in the
side. This so surprised the animal that he turned
and ran away a distance of several rods.
" Now is our chance ! Come ! " yelled Snap,
and leaped from the roof of the shed on the river
side. His chum followed, and once again the pair
put for the stream with all speed. They kept out
of sight of the ram as much as possible and he did
not see them until they were almost at the water's
edge. Before he could come up they dove into
the sti^^m and swam out several yards.
A TRICK THAT FAILED 19
" Say, that's what I call a narrow shave ! " cried
Shep, when he and his chum realized that the
danger was over. '' I want nothing more to do
with that ram."
" It's a pity we lost the strawberries," returned
Snap. " However, it can't be helped."
The two boys were soon well out in the river
and they looked anxiously over to the cove.
Nothing was to be seen of Giant and Whopper.
" They must be behind the bushes dressing,"
said Snap. ''Hello!" he yelled. "Hello!
Where are you? "
No answer was returned, and the doctor's son
joined in the cry. Then both boys pulled a more
hasty stroke and soon got to a point where they
could wade ashore.
" It can't be possible they went home," said
Snap, as he gazed around in perplexity.
*' We'll soon see," was the answer, and the
doctor's son ran to the bushes where the clothing
had been left. "Well, I never! " he cried.
" Why, all the clothing is gone ! '*
" Yes, their clothing and ours too ! "
" Do you think they've played a trick on us ? "
** No, they wouldn't be so mean."
" But where are they, and where is our cloth-
20 YOUNG HUNTERS OF THE LAKE
" I don't know."
In deep perplexity the two chums looked around
that vicinity. No trace of Giant or Whopper was
to be found and the only article of wearing ap-
parel they could discover was a blue-and-white sock.
^' That's Giant's sock," said Snap. " And that
proves something is wrong. He wouldn't go away
and leave his own sock behind."
" True enough, Snap, but what do you think
" I don't know, unless they caught somebody in
the act of running off with our duds and ran after
" Let us call again."
This they did, using the full power of their lungs.
Soon an answering cry came back, and Whopper
appeared on the river bank above them, followed
by Giant. Each carried a bundle of clothing under
his arm and some shoes in his hand.
"Well, what does this mean?" demanded the
doctor's son, as the others drew closer.
" You're fine fellows to stay away so long,"
" We called to you about a million times that we
wanted help," put In Whopper.
" Well, weVe had our troubles of our own,"
answered Snap. " A big, angry ram came after u^
A TRICK THAT FAILED 21
and held us prisoners for awhile. But what hap-
pened here? Did somebody run away with our
" Yes, and we had a great time getting them
again," answered Whopper.
" We had to run after the chaps barefooted,"
came from Giant. " Just look at my feet," and
he showed how they had been cut and scratched.
" Who were they? " demanded the doctor's son.
" We don't know exactly, but we've got our sus-
picions," answered the small boy.
" There were two of them," said Whopper.
" Both good-sized fellows. We didn't hear them
until they had all the clothes in their arms and were
running away. As soon as they heard us coming
both threw their coats up over their heads, so we
wouldn't recognize them. They would have got-
ten away sure only Giant yelled that he would fire
a pistol at them if they didn't stop and then they^
got scared and dropped the clothing In a ditch."
"And who do you think they were?" asked
" Ham Spink and Carl Dudder."
" Why, they aren't home from boarding school
yet! " cried Shep.
" I don't care, that's what I think," said Giant,
sturdily. " I know just how those fellows look
22 YOUNG HUNTERS OF THE LAKE
and walk. Of course I didn't see their faces, but