Will Hobbs grew up with a parent in the military, moved around a lot,
and was exposed to several different regions of the world. The Yukon
was one of these regions. Hobbs’s family finally settled down in
California, and Hobbs continued to explore the outdoors every day. After
graduating from college, Hobbs and his wife settled in southwestern Colorado.
Many ideas for his stories have come from his personal experience in
The Journey Begins
Jason is a newspaper vendor on the streets of New York. Recent news
is of personal interest to him. A ship filled with gold has arrived in
Seattle, Jason’s hometown. Ten months before, Jason had been living
in Seattle with his brothers. That was before this 15-year-old had decided
to seek his fortune.
Charting the Course
The book is about Jason’s quest to find his brothers. Jason
returns to Seattle to learn that his brothers have taken his nest egg and
have headed for the gold fields of the Yukon. Jason, in an effort to rejoin
his family, stows away on a ship that is heading to Skagway. He is thrown
off the ship in Juneau but eventually makes it to Skagway. Jack London
is an important character in the storyline. London was a real person, as
were the men who are mentioned in his party. Research who London was and
why he was famous.
Jason goes through much to reach his family. He grows as a person
in several different ways. Think about the story. What hardships did he
overcome to arrive in Dawson City? List these hardships. How many 15-year-olds
do you think could do these things today? Why was he determined? What made
Jason so strong? What is different today? With these thoughts in mind,
write a five-paragraph essay on the differences between 15-year-olds of
the 1800s and of today.
Create a Diagram
After reading this book, compare the gold rush in the Yukon with the
gold rush in California. Make a Venn diagram to show these comparisons.
Research a Character
At the end of this book, the author indicates where he got his information.
Especially look at the names of the real persons who were characters
in the story. Pick one of them and see what you can find out about him
or her before and after he or she was in the Yukon.
Illustrate a Guide
Illustrate a guide to gold mining; include pictures
and step-by-step instructions.