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CANADIAN WAR CAMPS   243

of gold made one gasp for very wonder. Behind these were other hills, the colours softened, less raw, less plangent. Still farther were the tips of distant mountains, blue-grey against the sky.

Valcartier, carved out of the hills for the use of the Jacques Cartier River, seemed to have infinite space as well as infinite beauty. The camp, admirably suited for manoeuvring large bodies- of men, was eight miles long, and nearly four miles wide. Less than half of this land was occupied by tents allotted to any special unit. For example, the rifle butts had 1,700 targets. No such ranges had ever been seen before, at least on this continent. In front, of the infantry lines there was ample room for the forces to manoeuvre, either in brigade formation or in review. Across the Jacques Cartier River to the northward the artillery had a sweep of 4,000 acres with a mountain in the middle of it—an ideal place' for firing practice. For the engineers, there lay the clear saffron-coloured river, about one hundred yards wide, and waiting to be bridged. The first of three floating bridges to be built was thrown across in five hours and forty minutes, a thousand empty barrels serving as pontoons. It carried the heaviest artillery conveniently. For the signal corps there were hillsides admirable for wig-wagging and heliograph work. Roads for route marches led past Valcartier village—where a dozen Waterloo veterans lie buried—towards Lake St. Joseph on the one hand and Charlesbourg and Quebec on the other. For the first time in the military annals of Canada a large force was assembled and had free elbow room.

Coming to the unpainted frame house where Head-quarters was situated—a place distinguished by the Union Jack rippling from a tall staff—one noticed that the land lay in two, steppes, the greater, perhaps thirty feet below the level of the other. Looking northward, the infantry camp lay to the right hand. It was separated from the other half of the camp proper, where


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