"“You can form no idea, nor can I give you any description of the evils which best us. From the time we left the [Donner] lake ….until we reached the top it was one continued jumping from one rocky cliff to another. We would have to roll over this big rock, then over that; then there was bridging a branch; then we had to lift our wagons by main force up to the top of a ledge of rocks…Three days…found ourselves six miles form the lake…you never saw a set of fellows more happy than when we reached the summit. "
Wm. Todd, 1845