Leonard Lyell


John Muir


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[2]to Fort Bragg. There I saw a good deal & was particularly advised to see some of the finer stands on the Eel River. This expedition cost far more time than I had expected & after all I did not get to the largest trees. Difficulties & delays in getting about the country was the cause & I did not think it worth while staying longer - I was very much interested in what I saw the stately magnificence of the standing trees up to 10 & 12 ft in diameter & the great value of the timberIf the woods I saw are a fair sample of the rest I fancy I must be right in regarding the forest as a decadent one. Almost all the larger mature trees are dead at the top & even of the next younger growth a very large proportion seemed withered at the head & seemed not to be increasing in height though all were vigorous in growth lower down & may increase in growth yet a good whileI saw no seedlings of S. sempervirens that I could be sure of. There were plenty3.of young plants of the Douglas fir, a tree that seems less fastidious as to condition of growth. Why the Redwood should stop abruptly & sometimes at a distance recur again in the valley; I could find no sufficient reason - I suppose it has something to do with rainfall.This decadence of the Redwood looks not to be of very old date. Possibly within the last 100 years. Anyhow I could not see any evidence to show that it was now holding its own against an invasion of the Douglas Fir. from the higher slopes. The cutover stocks sprout freely but none that I saw were high enough or were thick enough or the ground to justify the expectation that they would become forest trees for in many cases the leading shoot was very liable to wither & break off. The Union lumber Co people told me of an interesting experiment they are carrying out in planting up the intervals among the cutover stock with Eucalyptus both as an additional source of lumber & because they hope that the side shade04769


San Francisco

Date Original

1910 May 29


Original letter dimensions: 21.5 x 14 cm.

Resource Identifier


File Identifier

Reel 19, Image 0429

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Owning Institution

The Bancroft Library, University of California at Berkeley. Please contact this institution directly to obtain copies of the images or permission to publish or use them beyond educational purposes.

Page Number

Page 2


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