While tales of fabulous wealth – is a legend, but the pioneer miners of California faced huge obstacles, and most of them barely had enough to eat, not to mention the razbagatsenne. Weather & # 39; e at a certain time, it was a pleasant and favorable to mining and exploration, but at other times it was bitter and nepagadliva. To eat, they had to work in the rain and cold. Winter 1852-53's, perhaps, was the most violent in the history of California. A long spell of rain, which leads to high water in rivers and streams, completely prevented the transportation of supplies from the cities, and a lot of things like, although actual cases of starvation there. Many men live for weeks on a black barley. Beans, even without the ham, to fill them, in some cases, was the only food that is available to miners for weeks. In one camp the pork rind borrowed from one house to another to lubricate the pan for cans (pancakes). The narrative of the personal experience of one miner, who lived on the south branch of Dry Creek, Amador County, in 1852, will give an idea of this year's troubles:
"It rained for about six weeks, and our application was four feet under water for months. There were no swallowing, which would have to pay, and we waited until the rain stopped, until not give any description. Gone are the money, and dust. Something had to be done, even if the rain went into the stream. We had four one Yank, two young married from Illinois, and the man who served in the United States Army in seminolskay war, as well as a volunteer in the Mexican war. We took the pickaxe , shovels and a rolling pin and moved towards Indian sip. passing a short distance away, one of the miners of our group, who came from Illinois, thought of his young wife, and domestic happiness compared with the country, and, overcome by his feelings, crashed into the confused desperation and started to run away into the cabin, where he was found the night which hovers over the cold ashes of the fire, the fire is completely extinguish the Head of the flood of tears.
At the head of the Indian Bay found some fee. We came to work, and about four hours, we, is an admixture grukavyh listening, swinging and breading had an ounce of gold dust. With that, I began to Fideltavne buy dinner for the boys. "
Now at a price of around $ 1,000 per ounce, an ounce of gold dust in 2009, it will be bought by many months of basic food for men, but in those days gold was only $ 20 per ounce. With superior price of food in 1852 (gold at a hundred dollars a barrel, and the meat and seventy-five cents per pound) it was not so much. Our miner continued the tale:
"After standing and wondering, I noticed what I thought, that the rain will soon meet to stocks fell, believed that I would buy, but at night a small amount, etc. Mr. Wingo, gentleman merchant, did I think I do not notice. my embarrassment, but politely sold me a small smear of flour and a piece of meat that went down to the corner of the bag out of sight. I ran to the salon quickly darkness falls and the rain is still falling.
Cries were now almost deeply at the waist, but I went through safely all of them, until he came to Dry Creek. The logs, after which I moved to the morning was not, and the water flowing over the banks. Two or three hundred yards was the cabin, and I knew that a bright light that shines through the door windows, has created a large fire to cook our dinner with our revenue performance and drying. our clothes are soaked with rain twelve hours. It was convened by the Council of hostilities, and was in demand all available information about roads, bridges and ferries. Creek was nowhere to hem; This offer has been canceled without delay. One witness, a member of the Council, recalled that as seen through tree screaming a mile away or a couple of days, but he could not vouch for the fact that it is there. On the & # 39; being the only information available, the commander ordered the change to a possible bridge base. Down by the creek, in the dark, over the rocks and bushes, stumbling and falling, and after hours of hard work bridge was found. It was a cedar tree, an example of which lay at the root, big top, which reached the opposite shore, and the middle droops down so that the water flowed, perhaps two feet in the trunk depth, and every moment threatened to sweep the wood from the dock; in fact, standing on its upper end, I felt like he staggers to the movement of water. But in the submerged part of the limb were that stood out of the flow and order, which operated across the bridge, was enacted, I caution that said: "My boy, if you peretryasesh overboard guys go without dinner." The opposite bank was safe, feeling the road and holding the limb; and, an hour later, the bread and roast pork, and the light which boomed, led us in a comfortable condition and gave us a laugh at all our troubles. "
Such were the struggles and the main difficulties of life in the gold camps of California in the early days.