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Louis L'Amour

BOOK: Louis L'Amour
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A
MBUSH IN THE
W
ILDERNESS

J
UST THEN SNOW fell from a pine branch some distance up the slope.

“Look out!” I yelled, and grabbed Ann around the waist and leaped my horse into the rocks and brush.

A blast of rifle fire raked the spot where we’d been, and up the slope I heard a voice. “Get them! Get every damned one of them!”

I dropped Ann as I left the saddle, and when I hit the ground I lit running, rifle in hand. I turned and, crouching, ran to get hold of the trace-chains we’d hooked to the sled.

Philo was lying there, his face white but his eyes lit with a hard fire. “Hand me down a rifle,” he said. “I’ll not be done out of this.”

Eddie was nowhere in sight; one horse was down and dying.

They had trapped us for fair.

Bantam Books by Louis L’Amour
ASK YOUR BOOKSELLER FOR THE BOOKS YOU HAVE MISSED.

NOVELS

Bendigo shafter

Borden chantry

Brionne

The broken gun

The burning hills

The californios

Callaghen

Catlow

Chancy

The cherokee trail

Comstock lode

Conagher

Crossfire trail

Dark canyon

Down the long hills

The empty land

Fair blows the wind fallon

The ferguson rifle

The first fast draw flint

Guns of the timberlands

Hanging woman creek

The haunted mesa

heller with a gunthe

High graders

high lonesome

Hondo

How the west was won

The Iron Marshal

The Key-Lock Man

Kid Rodelo

Kilkenny

Killoe

Kilrone

Kiowa Trail

Last of the Breed

Last Stand at Papago Wells

The Lonesome Gods

The Man Called Noon

The Man from the Broken Hills

The Man from Skibbereen

Matagorda

Milo Talon

The Mountain Valley War

North to the Rails

Over on the Dry Side

Passin’ Through

The Proving Trail

The quick and the dead

Radigan

Reilly’s luck

The rider of lost creek

Rivers west

The shadow riders

Shalako

Showdown at yellow Butte

Silver canyon

Sitka

Son of a wanted man

Taggart

The tall stranger

To tame a land

Tucker

Under the sweetwater Rim

Utah blaine

The walking drum

Westward the tide

Where the long grass Blows

SHORT STORY COLLECTIONS

Beyond the great snow Mountains

Bowdrie

Bowdrie’s Law

Buckskin Run

The Collected Short

Stories of Louis

L’Amour (Vol. 1)

Dutchman’s Flat

End of the Drive

From the Listening Hills

The Hills of Homicide

Law of the Desert Born

Long Ride Home

Lonigan

May There Be a Road

Monument Rock

Night over the Solomons

Off the Mangrove Coast

The Outlaws of Mesquite

The Rider of the Ruby Hills

Riding for the Brand

The Strong Shall Live

The trail to crazy man

Valley of the sun

War party

West from singapore

West of dodge

With these hands

Yondering

SACKETT TITLES

Sackett’s land

To the far blue Mountains

The warrior’s path

Jubal sackett

Ride the river

The daybreakers

Sackett

Lando

Mojave crossing

Mustang man

The lonely men

Galloway

Treasure mountain

Lonely on the mountain

Ride the dark trail

The sackett brand

The sky-liners

THE HOPALONG CASSIDY NOVELS

The Riders of the High Rock

The Rustlers of West Fork

The Trail to Seven Pines

Trouble Shooter

NONFICTION

Education of a Wandering Man

Frontier

T
HE
S
ACKETT
c
OMPANION:

A Personal Guide to the Sackett Novels

A T
RAIL OF
M
EMORIES:

The Quotations of Louis L’Amour, compiled by Angelique

L’Amour

POETRY

Smoke from This Altar

HANGING WOMAN CREEK
A Bantam Book

PUBLISHING HISTORY
Bantam edition published April 1964
Bantam reissue / May 1999
Bantam reissue / August 2005

Published by
Bantam Dell
A Division of Random House, Inc.
New York, New York

This novel is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.

Photograph of Louis L’Amour by John Hamilton—Globe Photos, Inc.

All rights reserved

Copyright © 1964 by Louis & Katherine L’Amour Trust

Bantam Books and the rooster colophon are registered trademarks of Random House, Inc.

eISBN: 978-0-553-89918-4

www.bantamdell.com

v3.1_r1

Contents
CHAPTER 1

I
T WAS RAINING by the time we reached the railroad bridge. Evening was coming on, and the pelting rain was cold.

We dug in our heels and slid down the embankment to get under the bridge, where there was shelter of a sort. We built a fire, then huddled over it wondering what had become of our summer’s wages.

Three of us were there, strangers until a few hours ago, now joined in the idea of going west. I’d be going home, or to as much of a home as I could lay claim to, being rootless as a tumbleweed, blowing on, resting here and there against this fence or that, but staying nowhere long. As for the others, I had no idea.

The black skeleton frame of the trestle danced in the wavering light from the fire, and from time to time the flames guttered and hissed as the wind blew down the draw, spattering us with cold drops from off the bridge.

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