"The Beasts from Snow Mountain"
Valley of the Dinosaurs #7 (Charlton)
Art and story: Fred Himes
Our heroes face peril from a Neanderthal
assault and a terrible giant bird.
Lok, Katie, and Greg are exploring the
prehistoric valley when they stumble across a pair of river
people under attack by Neanderthals from the mountains. They
temporarily incapacitate the Neanderthals and escape with the
two river people. But they soon find themselves followed by the
Meanwhile, back near home, Digger and Glump
find themselves chased by a Diatryma, a giant,
flightless, predatory bird. The chase leads to a
Tyrannosaurus rex, who quickly catches and consumes a
chicken dinner. Digger and Glump continue on in relief and come
across their masters, greeting them warmly. Suddenly the
Neanderthals are back, attacking with boulders hurled by their
powerful muscles. Lok and Katie duck for cover behind some
rocks, while Greg and the pets seek shelter from the assault
behind others. Then the two pets suddenly begin urging Greg to
run, leading the Neanderthals on a chase...straight to the
location of the rapacious T. rex. At the sight of him,
the two Neanderthals turn and flee back to their mountain home.
Greg tries to take the credit for scaring
them off, but Katie realizes they brought in a "ringer".
"The Beasts from Snow Mountain" is an
story appearing in
Valley of the Dinosaurs #7.
Lok, Katie, and Greg come upon a group of river people under
attack by Neanderthals.
The river people previously appeared in
"The Jade Skull" and
"Return of the Exile".
The pterosaur in the bottom right corner of page 1 is probably a
Katie and Greg seem to be fairly skilled at swinging from vines
in this story, suggesting it takes place after the Butlers have
been in the valley for a while and learned from Lok.
The skull gracing the title banner of "The Beasts from Snow
Mountain" is hard to identify, but may be a sloth skull.
Page 4 describes the beasts from Snow Mountain as Neanderthals.
This would be Homo neanderthalensis, a human species
that died out approximately 30,000-45,000 years ago. The hairy,
primitive beast-men presented here are no longer considered
accurate by modern anthropological standards and are now thought
to have been much closer, though squatter and more
muscular, to modern humans.
On page 4, Katie implies she learned to be a lassoette in high
school. She's quite talented it seems; in
"The Challenge of Mata-Zin", she was revealed to be a
In the foreground of page 5, panel 1, a large dragonfly is being
pursued by what may be a Compsognathus or
On page 6, panel 3, Digger seems to be saying "Huh?" when he
hears a clucking sound that awakens him. On the next page, Glump
also has a "Huh?" above his head when he sees the giant bird,
but at least it's not in a word balloon, so it might be
construed as a narrative indication of his surprise rather than
a spoken sound.
The giant flightless bird that chases Digger and Glump
is identified as a Diatryma. This was an actual
genus of predatory flightless bird from the Cenozoic
discovered in North America in the 1870s, though most
scientists now consider it to be the same as the
pre-existing genus Gastornis, named from a
fossil found near Paris, France in 1855. Page 6
describes the bird as being like something out of
Colonel Sanders' wildest nightmares; Sanders (1890-1980)
was the founder of the Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant
On page 8, panel 1, the two river men are still with
our trio. But when the returning Neanderthals suddenly attack
again with boulders, the river men have disappeared without
explanation and are not seen again!
The pterosaur in panel 1 of page 11 appears to be a
Once again, in this story Digger and Glump display almost human
intelligence, particularly in how they lead the Neanderthals
into a trap against a T. rex.
At the end of the story, Katie jokes to Greg that he brought in
a ringer against the Neanderthals in the form of the T. rex.
"Ringer" is a sports idiom referring to a player or contestant
brought in under false pretenses to strengthen one side's
chances of winning.