John Muir



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William and Maymie Kimes Annotation

Following comments on how little tourists see due to their speed of travel, and how they almost never see the Great Central Plain in ''flower-time"" Muir relates his first crossing of the San Joaquin Valley on his way to Yosemite: ""On the second of April, 1868, I left San Francisco .... We had plenty of time, and proposed drifting leisurely mountain-ward ... by any road that we chanced to find, enjoying the flowers and light, 'camping out' wherever overtaken by night .... ""Upon reaching the Great Plains, he writes: "" ... never were mortal eyes more thronged with beauty. When I walked, more than a hundred flowers touched my feet, at every step closing above them, as if wading in water. Go where I would, east or west, north or south, I still plashed and rippled in flower-gems .... But all this beauty of life is fast fading year by year,-foundering in the grossness of modern refinement.""


Old and New [Boston] v. 5, no. 6


p. 767-772

Rambles of a Botanist Among the Plants and Climates of California



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