John Muir


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Few of all the passengers to be seen. The deck is clear and silent as if all had been washed overboard by the gale. Who would be an [bold] sailor boy now. How [cold] & [glory] the [the] ship appears. How poor a [camp] [ ] no wood or shelter & too much water. [Long] tresses torn from the [wavetops] & born away in [sand]. Yet there is something extremely beautiful & exhilarating in the wild free sweep & swell of the dark heedless ocean. The spray is irised by the sun as it is born

away to refresh [wet] the winds. And [ ] vividly is the power & [sufficiency] of nature manifested in the gulls that follow in the wake of our vessel as they skim the waves against the wind often flying near half a mile without moving their long narrow [taut] wings. [Swaying] from side to side by simply tilting themselves this way and that. How they can fly at the rate of ten or fifteen miles an hour dead [against] the wind without a single wingbeat is a mechanical problem not easily solved. They frequently alight & swim buoyantly. Some

Date Original



Original journal dimensions: 9 x 14.5 cm.

Resource Identifier



Holt-Atherton Special Collections, University of the Pacific Library

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John Muir, journals, drawings, writings, travel, journaling, naturalist