When their wheat crop is ravaged by a hailstorm, the discouraged Walnut Grove men leave town to search for work. During his long walk, Charles meets Jack Peters 'powder monkey', a ... See full summary »



(developed for television by), (based upon the series of books "Little House" by) | 1 more credit »

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Jack Peters
Jacob Jacobsen (as Richard O. Hurst)
Willa Sweeney (as Celia Kaye)
Elna Jacobsen
Tom Cassidy
Danny Peters
Dee Anne ...
Peggy Peters
Terry Lumley ...
Connie Faraday


When their wheat crop is ravaged by a hailstorm, the discouraged Walnut Grove men leave town to search for work. During his long walk, Charles meets Jack Peters 'powder monkey', a flamboyant hard rock miner who recommends Charles for the well-paying but dangerous job, part of a 2-man hole drilling team needed to hand-set blasting charges in a rock quarry. Meanwhile, back in Walnut Grove, Caroline organizes the women to try to salvage what they can of the damaged wheat. In the end, though separated by distance and circumstance, the pioneer families work together to meet the challenge of unpredictable prairie life. Written by shepherd1138

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

hailstorm | number in title | See All (2) »


TV-PG | See all certifications »



Release Date:

25 September 1974 (USA)  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


In 1985 Melissa Gilbert stared with Lance Kerwin in "Faerie Tale Theatre": The Snow Queen as Gerda and Kay. See more »


Willa Sweeney: This is a waste! We're not going to get enough to make any flour. And then we're all going to go hungry.
Caroline Ingalls: We certainly will go hungry, Willa. If we all work like you do. You're gonna have to try harder.
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Edited into Little House Years (1979) See more »

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User Reviews

The Dangerous Trek!!
14 August 2011 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Charles Ingalls was observing his wheat crop on his farm. The promise of obtaining money was a reality happening for the Ingalls. The notion of $2625 for the Ingalls Family was a dream for them to obtain new clothes and new toys for their household. The only problem: a horrendous hail storm severely wrecked their wheat crop; therefore, Charles Ingalls had to return the horses to Lars Hansen. Charles Ingalls had only one recourse: he had to travel one hundred on his worn out boots in order to obtain work.

Along the journey, he met Jack Peters on his farm. Mr. Peters said goodbye to his wife and his son. They made camp during the journey to find work. While they made camp, Charles Ingalls met an unknown person -- named Jacob Jacobsen -- during the journey. Charles Ingalls received a surprise: a new pair of boots that were thrown in his direction. He was surprised (but grateful) for receiving these boots from Jacob Jacobsen -- despite not having the money to pay for them right away. Eventually, the three of them approached a quarry to obtain work. The purpose: the dangerous task of placing dynamite in the holes of the large boulders (all for the purpose of attaining smaller pieces of rock) after fulfilling a double jack operation. The double jack operation involved two persons (in a rotation basis) using a sledgehammer and a heavy nail to break the hole open for blasting purposes. They obtained the job for the purpose of being paid in a quarry.

In the meantime, the women in Walnut Grove were doing everything possible to salvage the wheat that was destroyed in the hail storm. Everyone would participate in the gathering of the wheat in the fields -- all for the purposes of gathering the wheat into bundles, separating and chafing the wheat into grains, and gathering the wheat and sending the wheat directly to the mill. Willa Sweeney was one person that griped about this task. She claimed everyone would go hungry because of a deficient wheat crop. The reality: all the families would be hungry if she worked in a lazy manner; therefore, Caroline Ingalls told her she needed to try harder if she wanted to succeed in this challenge. The women entered town for the purpose of obtaining mail and any letters they received from their husbands.

Charles Ingalls and Jacob Jacobsen won the contest in relation to the double jacking task. They obtained twenty-five dollars for winning the contest. They would receive their additional pay at the end of the week. Jack Peters was so excited about the two of them winning the contest. The fatal part: Jack Peters was standing in a pile of rocks that had dynamite underneath the boulders. The dynamite exploded suddenly. Jack Peters was blown to kingdom come. The boss gave Jack Peters' pay to Charles Ingalls. He would tell the wife that Jack Peters lost his life in a dynamite explosion; consequently, the son would be assuming full responsibility of running the family farm. One bright spot: Jacob Jacobsen's wife had given birth to a baby boy. Challenging And Dangerous!! A Solid 10 From The 1974-1975 Television Season!!

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