To Build a Fire

Where was it that he died?

Specifically... as if in the Sulphur Creek?

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The text doesn't tell us a specific place for the man's death. We knows he's on his way to a camp near Sulphur Creek, and we know he running, trying to shake off the cold. But after he dies, the dog is described as "trotting" up the trail in the direction he knew." That's all the specifics we're given.

"You were right, old hoss; you were right," the man mumbled to the old- timer of Sulphur Creek.

Then the man drowsed off into what seemed to him the most comfortable and satisfying sleep he had ever known. The dog sat facing him and waiting. The brief day drew to a close in a long, slow twilight. There were no signs of a fire to be made, and, besides, never in the dog's experience had it known a man to sit like that in the snow and make no fire. As the twilight drew on, its eager yearning for the fire mastered it, and with a great lifting and shifting of forefeet, it whined softly, then flattened its ears down in anticipation of being chidden by the man. But the man remained silent. Later, the dog whined loudly. And still later it crept close to the man and caught the scent of death. This made the animal bristle and back away. A little longer it delayed, howling under the stars that leaped and danced and shone brightly in the cold sky. Then it turned and trotted up the trail in the direction of the camp it knew, where were the other food-providers and fire-providers."


To Build a Fire