On Horseback By Charles Dudley Warner
























































































































































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Riding down the French Broad was one of the original objects of our
journey. Travelers with the same intention may - Page 110
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Riding Down The French Broad Was One Of The Original Objects Of Our Journey.

Travelers with the same intention may be warned that the route on horseback is impracticable.

The distance to the Warm Springs is thirty-seven miles; to Marshall, more than halfway, the road is clear, as it runs on the opposite side of the river from the railway, and the valley is something more than river and rails. But below Marshall the valley contracts, and the rails are laid a good portion of the way in the old stage road. One can walk the track, but to ride a horse over its sleepers and culverts and occasional bridges, and dodge the trains, is neither safe nor agreeable. We sent our horses round - the messenger taking the risk of leading them, between trains, over the last six or eight miles, - and took the train.

The railway, after crossing a mile or two of meadows, hugs the river all the way. The scenery is the reverse of bold. The hills are low, monotonous in form, and the stream winds through them, with many a pretty turn and "reach," with scarcely a ribbon of room to spare on either side. The river is shallow, rapid, stony, muddy, full of rocks, with an occasional little island covered with low bushes. The rock seems to be a clay formation, rotten and colored. As we approach Warm Springs the scenery becomes a little bolder, and we emerge into the open space about the Springs through a narrower defile, guarded by rocks that are really picturesque in color and splintered decay, one of them being known, of course, as the "Lover's Leap," a name common in every part of the modern or ancient world where there is a settlement near a precipice, with always the same legend attached to it.

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