The journey to the lake territories or the Great Journey, that takes place in Dawn, is when all four Clans flee from the forest due to Twolegs destroying it and they head over the mountains to their new lake home.



Twolegs have brought monsters and are destroying the forest. Five cats return from their journey, at least one from each Clan, to tell the Clans they have to leave. The Clans are hesitant at first, but the Clans eventually flee. At Highstones, they receive the message of the dying warrior, a shooting star that leads over the mountains. They realize the Clans have to journey over the mountains to find a new home.


The Clans walk separately at first, but soon learn to work together, starting with a queen saving another queen’s kit. The Clans journey up the mountains where they are vulnerable at first, but they are found by the Tribe and taken in safely away from eagles and the cold. The Clans soon move on out of the mountains and they climb a slope to stare at a lake, filled with Silverpelt. They send cats around the lake to check the territory and soon settle in their new territories. They refer this Journey as the Great Journey, and is the biggest thing in Clan history up until the Battle Against the Dark Forest.


Before the journey

Six cats have mysteriously disappeared to go on a journey, and Twolegs appear with giant monsters and start to destroy the forest. The journeying cats return and tell the Clans they need to leave the forest and to sit on the great rock and a dying warrior will show the way. They tried sitting on the Great Rock at Fourtrees, but nothing had happened.
Soon, Tallstar takes his Clan to ThunderClan and begs to leave, but at the same time, Tawnypelt comes and begs to save her Clan as Twolegs are destroying the camp. Firestar loses a life, and ShadowClan and ThunderClan stay at Sunningrocks. Leopardstar, refusing to leave since her territory stays untouched by Twolegs, agree that if ShadowClan loses their camp, Twolegs will surely come and destroy her territory.
However, when ShadowClan and ThunderClan are ready to leave, Leopardstar tells them they can’t leave, as their elderly medicine cat, Mudfur is dying. Frostfur, Speckletail, Loudbelly, and Shadepelt decide to stay and die at the forest, and sit vigil for Mudfur. RiverClan finally goes with the other Clans and all Clans meet up at Highstones.
Ravenpaw, a loner who is best friends with Firestar, meets them there. The cats that made the journey to midnight, sit on one of the rocks and see a shooting star, a dying warrior, disappearing behind the Mountains, signaling they need to go over the mountains. They tell their Clan leaders this and after saying goodbye to Ravenpaw, the Clans leave the forest forever.

Journey begins

The cats travel in their own Clans until they come across a Thunderpath. After ShadowClan crosses, a kit becomes confused and wonders onto the Thunderpath, and Tallpoppy of ShadowClan saves the kit. The next day, Firestar sends out hunting patrols. Leafpaw, ThunderClan’s medicine cat apprentice, gets caught by a dog, but is rescued by Hawkfrost, a cat that Leafpaw and her sister, Squirrelpaw is suspicious of. Brambleclaw and Squirrelpaw arrive and all cats succeed in chasing away the dog.

Into the mountains

The Clans begin ascending into the mountains, and Smokepaw, a ShadowClan apprentice falls into a gorge after a ledge he was standing on gave way. Russetfur, the ShadowClan deputy, tries to save him but almost falls herself. Blackstar tells Smokepaw’s mother they will honor the apprentice. When the Clans can rest, Brambleclaw tells the Clans how to hunt in the mountains and sends out hunting patrols.
The patrols finds an eagle, but it dives down to the large group of cats and picks up Marshkit, a ShadowClan kit. Brackenfur, a ThunderClan warrior leaps up and manages to loosen the eagles hold on the kit and Marshkit falls to the ground. The cats begin to panic about more attacks while they’re in the mountains. While hunting, Squirrelpaw finds Talon, a Tribe Cave-guard. He helps bring the Clans to the Cave of Rushing Water, where the Tribe equivalent of a camp is.
When they arrive, Stormfur, a RiverClan cat that made the journey to Midnight, went straight over to Brook, a Tribe cat he had fallen in love with. The Clans rest and eat with the Tribe, and Stoneteller, the equivalent of the leader and medicine cat of the Tribe, meets with the leaders and medicine cats and formally tells them they can stay with the Tribe. Later, Stoneteller shows Leafpaw the Cave of Pointed Stones, where he speaks to the Tribe of Endless Hunting.
Later, Spottedleaf, a former ThunderClan medicine cat, comes to Leafpaw in a dream, and tells her StarClan will follow the Clans wherever they go. The Clans are forced to stay another day due to the snow, and Leafpaw tells Stoneteller about a Gathering, so Stoneteller announces they will have one of their own. Crag, a friend of the cats that journeyed to find midnight, shares prey with Leafpaw during the celebration of the death of Sharptooth. Tallstar also holds Crowpaw’s Warrior ceremony. (Crowpaw is the WindClan cat that journeyed to Midnight) However, in the middle of his ceremony, Crowpaw stops Tallstar to request his warrior name of Crowfeather, in tribute to Feathertail. Tallstar agrees to this, and names him Crowfeather.
Later, while hunting, Stormfur tells Squirrelpaw that he will stay with the Tribe with Brook. Squirrelpaw later meets up with Brambleclaw, and he guesses that Stormfur is leaving. Before the Clans leave, Stormfur announces that he will stay with the Tribe, and a few Tribe cats lead the Clans out of the mountains.

New home

Leafpaw notices how comfortable the Clans have gotten with each other and how being out of the mountains have given them hope. When the Clans are undecided where to go, Leafpaw tells them that she dreamed of great shining water that held Silverpelt[1] in it. The Clans climb over a valley and find themselves staring at a lake filled with the stars in the sky, just as Leafpaw dreamed of. They finally find their future home.

After the journey

The Clans send the journeying cats around the lake to investigate the territory and find a camp, but Mistyfoot takes place of Stormfur since he stayed with the Tribe. The Clans all move to their new territory but the bonds they created with each other stays in their minds for moons, especially with Leafpaw and Crowfeather as they quickly fall in love. The Clans refer to this journey as the Great Journey, and it’s the biggest thing in their history up until the Battle Against the Dark Forest.



Brambleclaw made the Journey to Midnight and adopted the role as unofficial leader. He helped guide the Clans throughout the journey, teaching them Tribe techniques for hunting in the mountains. He made the journey around the lake to investigate the new territory and helped his Clan settle in the new territory.


Squirrelpaw, who was only an apprentice at the time, was not selected for the journey when she made the journey to Midnight, but went anyway, and grew closer to Brambleclaw. Returning to the Clans, she taught them Tribe hunting techniques when they were in the mountains, and she made the journey around the lake to investigate the new territory. All her efforts were rewarded when at the shore of the lake, she received her warrior name, Squirrelflight.


Stormfur was not selected for the journey to Midnight but loyalty to his sister, Feathertail, drove him on. Feathertail died on the way back though, so Stormfur stood in place in representing RiverClan. He was particularly attuned with the Tribe’s hunting techniques, and helped the Clans when they were vulnerable in the mountains. He grew close to a Tribe cat named Brook on the way back from seeing Midnight and when the Clans said goodbye to the Tribe, he stayed with the Tribe to be with Brook.


Only an apprentice, he was selected to journey with the cats from the other Clans to see Midnight. During the journey, he fell in love with Feathertail, a RiverClan cat, but Feathertail sacrificed herself for him. Sick with grief, he returned to his Clan and almost dies intentionally, but is convinced to help the living instead of joining the dead. Crowpaw used Tribe techniques to catch food for his starving clan, and helped the Clans catch food when they were vulnerable. His efforts were rewarded when Tallstar gives him his warrior name, but Crowpaw requests it to be Crowfeather, in memory of Feathertail, and Tallstar agrees.


Tawnypelt was the ShadowClan cat that was selected to journey to Midnight, and she encouraged Feathertail to see Crowpaw’s softer side, causing her to sacrifice herself for Crowpaw, something Tawnypelt probably regretted later. Tawnypelt went around the lake, investigating the territory and helped her Clan settle in their new home.


Firestar was willing to leave when Brambleclaw and Squirrelpaw told him to, but knew the Clans had to leave together. He waited, offering shelter to ShadowClan when they lost their camp. He led his Clan through the hardships, trusting Squirrelpaw and Brambleclaw to guide his Clan, even though he was told they would destroy the Clan. He knew in the end they would save the Clan, and he helped his Clan settle in their new home.


Leopardstar was stubborn at first to leave the forest, her Clan unaffected and thriving while the other Clans starve. It was not until ShadowClan’s camp is destroyed when Leopardstar agrees to leave. She then told they can’t leave because their elderly medicine cat and her father Mudfur, is dying. Elders of the Clans that refuse to go stay with him and sit vigil for them, so Leopardstar leads her Clan, and help to settle them in their new home.


Tallstar was a very old cat by the time Crowpaw returned. His Clan was starving since Twolegs poisoned the rabbits, and Crowpaw manages to help his Clan with Tribe techniques he learned in the mountains. Too weak to lead his Clan, his deputy, Mudclaw made the leadership decisions. Tallstar did make Crowpaw a warrior at the Cave of Rushing Water, and at the shore of the lake, their new home, he made Onestar his deputy and successor, something that made a great effect on the Clans later on.


Blackstar refused to talk about the trouble with Twolegs, let alone leaving at first until ShadowClan’s camp was destroyed, and is forced to shelter with ThunderClan. Blackstar still clung to his Clan’s pride, refusing to accept prey from ThunderClan and barely accepting herbs and medicine. On the journey, he let his Clan share with the other Clans, and even after the journey he was mindful of the bonds the Clans made.

Characters that took part in the journey






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Kit: "I want to go home!"
Tallpoppy: "We are going home. Our new home."
—Tallpoppy to her kit Dawn, page 227

"This is no longer our home. Home is waiting for us at the end of our journey."
—Firestar to RiverClan and ThunderClan Dawn, page 232

"More water will flow before we join StarClan. This is not an end. It is a beginning. You will need the courage of a lion to face this journey."
—Ravenpaw to Firestar about the upcoming journey Dawn, page 257

See also

Notes and references

  1. Silverpelt is the Milky Way, or the stars in the sky
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 Revealed in Dawn, page 219
  3. 3.0 3.1 Revealed in Dawn, page 220
  4. Revealed in Dawn, page 222
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 Revealed in Dawn, page 227
  6. Revealed in Dawn, page 228
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 Revealed in Dawn, page 232
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 8.4 Revealed in Dawn, page 234
  9. 9.0 9.1 Revealed in Dawn, page 248
  10. 10.0 10.1 Revealed in Dawn, page 261
  11. 11.00 11.01 11.02 11.03 11.04 11.05 11.06 11.07 11.08 11.09 11.10 11.11 11.12 11.13 11.14 11.15 11.16 Revealed in Dawn, allegiances
  12. 12.00 12.01 12.02 12.03 12.04 12.05 12.06 12.07 12.08 12.09 12.10 12.11 12.12 12.13 12.14 12.15 12.16 12.17 12.18 12.19 Revealed in Starlight, allegiances
  13. Revealed in Dawn, page 221
  14. Revealed in Starlight, page 109
  15. 15.0 15.1 15.2 Revealed in Dawn, page 236
  16. Revealed in Starlight, pages 109-110
  17. Revealed in Dawn, page 286
  18. 18.0 18.1 Revealed in Dawn, page 242
  19. Revealed in Dawn, page 266
  20. Revealed in Dawn, page 278
  21. 21.0 21.1 Revealed in Dawn, page 279
  22. 22.0 22.1 22.2 22.3 22.4 22.5 Revealed in Dawn, page 226
  23. Revealed in Dawn, page 229
  24. Revealed in Dawn, page 230
  25. 25.0 25.1 Revealed in Dawn, page 237
  26. Revealed in Dawn, page 269
  27. Revealed in Dawn, page 233
  28. 28.0 28.1 Revealed in Dawn, page 247
  29. 29.0 29.1 Revealed in Dawn, page 265
  30. Revealed in Dawn, page 268
  31. Revealed in Dawn, page 328
Events in the Warriors series
The Prophecies Begin Battle for SunningrocksBrokenstar's tyrannyPlan to divert the dogsBloodClan's invasion
The New Prophecy Finding MidnightA new homeWindClan civil warAmbush of the badgers
Power of Three A Tribe in needAssault on ThunderClanFireTracking a killer
Omen of the Stars Saving the lakeDrought in the lake territoriesFight for the borderWar with the Dark Forest
Dawn of the Clans The first battleFollowing the sun trail
A Vision of Shadows Alderpaw's questYellowcough epidemicThe Kin's campaignShadowClan's downfallWatermint shortageFireBattle for the stolen kitsShadowClan versus SkyClan
The Broken Code Clash of the Clans
Super Editions Talltail and Jake's excellent adventureSkyClan's revivalA storm of epic proportionsBlood, water, and badgersBattle of the gorgeBattle against the Sisters
Novellas A predicted starvationRavenpaw's travels
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