The Spanish horse patrol was on route to Bodega on the Pacific. Rumors, then reports, had come to the fort beside St. Rafael near San Francisco Bay that other Europeans had been seen in the headlands around the mountain called Tamalpais.
The five leather-coated soldiers, their priest companion and the native servant stopped awhile to stretch their legs and barter food at a poor village. The missionary, mildly drunk, was still able to talk with the village elder in Bay area pidgin. The man had apparently seen nothing.