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Wild, Wild West
Life On the Trail



Life On the Trail
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 3 to 4
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   3.81

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    crock, re-hitched, repacked, alongside, bison, boring, rested, meals, ever, willing, antelope, nearby, mornings, order, measure, sunrise


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Life On the Trail
By Mary Lynn Bushong
  

1     Have you ever wondered what it would be like to walk across a whole country? Many of the pioneers who moved west did just that. Even those with wagons walked most of the way because it was easier than being in the wagon.
 
2     Mornings on a wagon train started early. People were up before sunrise. Breakfast was often coffee, bacon, and dry bread. If the family had a milk cow, they might have milk for the small children to drink. Extra milk could be put in a crock in the back of the wagon. The wagon would bounce so much on the trail that it could churn the milk into butter.
 
3     By 7:00 in the morning, the wagons were repacked with bedding and cooking things. The oxen or horses would be re-hitched to the wagons. Then the wagons would be pulled into line for the day's march.
 
4     Very few people rode in the wagons. Few wagons had springs. This meant that every rock or hole in the trail would make the wagon bounce and shake. Everyone who could walked alongside.
 
5     Sometimes people became sick while they traveled. They could not walk and had to ride in the wagons.

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