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Lewis and Clark
(1804-1806)

George Shannon- Lost in the New World, Part 3



George Shannon- Lost in the New World, Part 3
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 3 to 5
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   3.27

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    buckskin, cramped, downriver, fowl, heading, keelboat, knowing, lurched, mid-afternoon, scuttled, weakly, frantic, rustle, jerked, plentiful, venomous


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George Shannon- Lost in the New World, Part 3
By Toni Lee Robinson
  

1     The morning's drizzle had lifted. Now the heat pressed down, making Shannon's limbs feel like lead. His empty belly fluttered and ached. He had shot a grouse earlier in the morning. It was a smallish bird, not enough to fill him up completely. It had tasted like heaven! But now his stomach was painfully empty again.
 
2     Shannon took his buckskin bag, rifle, and powder horn off his shoulder. He looped them over the packsaddle of the lead horse. He could move faster that way, and the gun would still be near at hand. The river's edge had opened into grass, rocks, and sand. It was much faster going than it had been earlier. He rushed the horses along.
 
3     The lead horse stepped over a rock. Suddenly it threw itself backward. Shannon's shoulder was nearly yanked out of its socket. He fell hard on the rocks. The horse bellowed and continued to jump sideways. Shannon's rifle and gear flopped against the horse's side, frightening it further. The frantic animal staggered through the rocks and brush, dragging the second horse with it.
 
4     Shannon, dazed, pushed himself up. His hand slipped into a hole under the big rock. Sssssssssssst! Shannon jerked back as his hand brushed a scaly body. A snake!
 
5     Peering carefully into the dark hole, Shannon could make out shiny eyes and a large coiled body. His stomach lurched. He hated snakes. No wonder the horse had spooked.
 
6     Shannon scuttled backwards as the brown-spotted body slithered out from under the rock. But he knew it wasn't venomous. A poisonous snake's eyes had oval pupils. This snake had round black pupils and a strange snout. The snout tilted upward, making it look a little bit like a Kentucky hog. The state of Shannon's belly made him wonder for a moment if it would taste like a hog. But the snake had disappeared in the grass.
 
7     Shannon struggled to his feet. His leg hurt where he'd hit on the point of the rock. Not broken, though; that was good. He couldn't see the horses. Shannon looked in dismay at a trail of gear up over the rocks. The lead horse's pack had loosened. It would take him hours to gather it up and get started again!
 
8     Where was his rifle? He hurried on, following the trail of trade goods and utensils. There was the butt of the rifle in the grass. "Please let it be in one piece!" Shannon prayed. He blew sand off the hammer and sighted down the barrel. Amazingly, the rifle seemed fine.

Paragraphs 9 to 18:
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Lewis and Clark
(1804-1806)

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(1804-1806)



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