Ghost Warrior by Paty Jager
Growing up in the Wallowa Mountains in NE Oregon, I spent half of nearly every day on my horse, Junebug exploring the mountain side that was part of our property. One particular summer day Junebug and I were on a usual summer ride. No saddle, I was barefoot, and reclining on her back with my head pillowed by her quarter horse rump. I don’t remember what I was thinking about or if a song was playing in my head as I stared up at the sunlight filtering through the aspen leaves and pine boughs.
Junebug snorted and stopped. Her body quivered under me and she looked to the right. I turned my head in that direction as I rose to a sitting position. That’s when I saw him. A warrior on an appaloosa, a staff in one hand. He peered at me for a moment, making the hair on my arms tingle, before the horse turned and they disappeared into the trees. A chill trickled down my skin and I urged Junebug toward home.
I believe that meeting is what triggered my interest in the Nez Perce and pushed me to write books about their history and deep roots in the county.