Mary's big adventure
“Good Travelling on the Yukon River near Carmacks. Returning from Whitehorse March 1928.” The return trip to Ross River was much faster, as the party had broken trail on the way to Whitehorse.
Yukon Archives: #7914
Since Ross River’s only permanent residents were the Tidds and the trader Roy Buttle, it was sometimes better for Mary to go with Claude on patrol than to remain in Ross River.During her first February in Ross River,
“Our old Trail-breaker Billy Atkinson.”
Yukon Archives: #7378
Mary took part in a major expedition. She accompanied Claude on a required sled patrol to Whitehorse. "It meant three hundred miles by dog team as the crow flies across wild uninhabited country and unbroken trails. We decided that I should go too, as it was more hazardous probably for me to stay alone." (Ross River, 19)
Roy Buttle's store. Mary's inscription reads: “Claude enlarged this on to art paper and then colored it with oils. I framed it – and we gave it to Roy for Christmas. He seemed much pleased as it is his beloved store.”
Yukon Archives: 91/112 #547, PHO 606
The Tidds did not travel to Whitehorse alone: William Atkinson was with them to break trail. Atkinson is featured in many of Mary’s letters, as he also brought their mail in the winter and sometimes dined with the Tidds. Mary once exclaimed to her sister that he had devoured half a pumpkin pie.
During trapping season, Roy Buttle was often the only other human in Ross River. He was a good friend to Claude and Mary, looking out for Mary if Claude was away and plying them with vegetables from his garden. In gratitude, Claude and Mary presented him with a photograph of the trading post for Christmas.