Cast & Crew
Cowhand Johnny Travers is chased by a sheriff's posse after he is seen leaving the scene of a bank robbery, during which the nightwatchman was killed. Johnny leaps off a high cliff to his apparent death in a river below, and his loss is deeply felt by his friends, cowboys Hopalong Cassidy and California Carlson. Neither man believes Johnny was guilty, however, and their belief is confirmed when Johnny reappears alive and insists that he had nothing to do with the robbery. Johnny hides in a remote cabin so that Hoppy can investigate the robbery and vindicate him. Later, after Hoppy's friend, Laura Clark, breaks her engagement with lawyer Jeff Burton because he is too restrictive, Hoppy learns that Burton has been making offers to all the local ranchers for their ranches. Hoppy then learns from banker Zack Rogers that Burton has stock in the local mine, whose payroll was stolen during the robbery, and that Wade Haskell, the Clark ranch foreman, was the man who identified Johnny at the scene of the crime. California happens to know that Haskell would be friendless if it were not for Burton, who reportedly got him off a rustling charge years earlier. When the loan on the Clark ranch is called in by Rogers, Hoppy confronts Burton and reveals that Johnny is still alive. Hoppy deduces that Burton is responsible for the bank robbery, as he was the only person who could have known that the mine payroll was in the bank. Burton plots with Haskell to kill Hoppy and rustle the Clarks's cattle so that they will not be able to come up with the final loan payment. When the herd is being rustled, Johnny comes out of hiding to warn Clark, but the sheriff wants to arrest him along with Hoppy and California. Laura, in the meantime, has been riding Hoppy's renowned white horse and is shot by Haskell, who mistakes her for Hoppy from a distance. Hoppy, Johnny and California escape from the sheriff, who then realizes that Hoppy's suspicions are correct and follows to help. After rescuing Laura, who only received a flesh wound, Hoppy finds Burton and Haskell in their hideout plotting to pin the cattle rustling on Clark himself by implying that he was trying to steal the herd, which is now technically owned by the bank. Hoppy takes the men hostage and a gunfight erupts between the rustlers and Johnny and California. The posse joins in until the outlaws are captured.
The Sportsmen Quartette
Harry O. Hoyt
Joseph J. Lilley
Lewis J. Rachmil
Sherman A. Rose
Actor George Reeves included this film among his credits in publicity material, and he made several other films in this series around the same time. However, he is not credited and close examination of the film reveals no sign of him.
This film was a remake of the 1937 Harry Sherman production, Paramount release Rustler's Valley (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1931-40; F3.3861). Lost Canyon was originally intended as a Paramount release but was one of several films sold to United Artists for distribution. A Hollywood Reporter news item indicated that Speed Hansen's Hill Billy band was cast, but the band's appearance in the film has not been confirmed. Some scenes were filmed on location in Kernville, CA, according to Hollywood Reporter. A modern source adds Herman Hack, Merrill McCormack, George Morrell, Spade Cooley, John Cason and Henry Wills to the cast. For additional information on the series, consult the Series Index and see entry for Hop-Along Cassidy in AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1931-40; F3. 1990.