b'P ROVING THE P RINCIPLEThe ancestral homelands of the arrows, knives, scrapers, awls, needles, mountains to the north, they cached foodShoshone and Bannock people extend and other tools with obsidian, chert, and knew where to find water.across the entire length and width of the bone, and wood. The botanical varietySnake River Plain, across the Site, and in the region supplied a pharmacy as They traveled in family groups. Frominto the north well beyond the rugged well as food. the winter villages, some paths tookmountains of the Bitterroot, the Lemhi, them across the Site towards the Bigand the Lost River ranges Lost River, one of theand the valleys between waterways that flowed withthem. To the south and east, some reliability in thethey include the grassy lands spring of the year. Thearound Bear Lake, the desert was hot in summernorthern fringe of the Great and unthinkably cold in theBasin, and the bison country winter. This and other cavesof Wyoming and Montana. 7in the area must haveoffered considerable com-It was a generous territory fort in either season and aupon which they built their useful camp for a moreeconomy. They were extended stay.hunters and gatherers, andthe land supplied subsis- The cave contained perish-tence and more. The moun- able items of great age in atains and streams supplied reasonable state of preserva-sheep, deer, squirrel, tion. These provide somesalmon, fiber, grasses, insight as to how the earlywatercress, fruit, obsidian, travelers spent their time.and fuel. Rabbits, marmots, When people stopped at thesmall mammals, reptiles, cave, where water fromand sage brush inhabited small natural basins nearbythe dry desert. All these might have been available inwere useful. The river bot- the spring and fall, theytoms around the Snake INEEL Cultural Resources worked. They made andRiver were rich in roots, camas, tules, Until they began using horses in the early 1800s, repaired clothing, snares, bows andgrasses, hawks, and eagles. The people Shoshone and Bannock people traveled on foot. arrows, knives. Over the years, the peo-hunted bison and used its flesh and ple left rush mats, hides, rabbit-furbone for food, tools, and clothing. robes, and pottery behind. The plantsgrowing near the mouth of the caveWith these riches, the people ate and To live with the rhythm of the land was were saltbush, which for some reasondressed well during all seasons and had to understand the seasonality of the found this spot unusually hospitable.choice materials with which to make resources, and to walk from place tothe tools and goods of everyday life. place accordingly. Each direction of the Charred bison bones speak of goodThey crafted baskets and pots to carry, compass pointed to special giftscamas meals. On fine days, flint knappersstore, and prepare food. They trapped to the west, bison to the north and east. worked outside; on days too cold,game with snares and heated their When the people walked through the inside near the fire. Artisans in stone,dwellings comfortably with wood in the arid desert between the winter villages they had no idea that people of thewinter. They made spears, bows, in the Fort Hall bottomlands and the nuclear age would give names to their6'