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An Intrepid Breed of Men

An Intrepid Breed of Men
Oil on canvas
30” x 40’

The Rocky Mountain fur trade began in the early 1800’s. The hardy adventurers that searched for and trapped beaver throughout the western United States became known as the Mountain Men.  In the pursuit of their quarry, they left no river, creek or tributary unexplored.  They traveled game trails, ancient Indian paths and made their own tracks across the then mostly unknown frontier.  In this painting, three trappers and their pack animals traverse a stand of ancient bristle cone pine.  These gnarled, wind-swept, sub-alpine trees can live over 5,000 years.  As a note of irony regarding our human endeavors, the trapping of beaver in the west lasted less than 40 years.