In Trouble on the Horizon, a companion piece to Plunder on the Horizon, two prospectors on a mountain slope calmly survey an American Indian village nestled in a piney valley and, badly outnumbered, decide to give the camp a wide birth. As the pack horse shows, these are pick and shovel prospectors prepared to pan for their fortunes while not neglecting such creature comforts as a good pot of coffee. The fallen tree, a device Russell often employed in his early paintings to separate the foreground from the background, here carries an added symbolic import, signifying the cultural barrier forever dividing them.