In 1869, Civil War veteran and amputee Major John Powell led an expedition down the uncharted Colorado River through the then-nameless Grand Canyon. This is the story of what started as a geological survey, but ended in danger, chaos, and blood. The men were unexperienced and ill-equipped, and they faced unimaginable peril. Along the way there was death, mutiny, and abject terror, but Powell saw it through and produced a masterwork of adventure writing still held in the highest regard by the boatmen who follow his course today.
Never-before-used primary sources and firsthand canyoneering experience combine to create an authentic and visceral account of Powell’s historic journey. Written by an accomplished river guide with experience navigating Powell’s legendary course, River Master brings to life one of America’s iconic frontier stories.