John Muir


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{sketches: [tree studies]} of it. By keeping close inshore and dodging about in the lee of the many islands that dot the entrance to Lynn Canal we got along some 10 or 12 miles by 2 or 3 o’clock. Then, the tide having turned against us we would make scarce any headway, and therefore landed in a sheltered cove a few miles up the Canal on the W. side. I took a walk in the woods and found a fine growth of yellow cedar, but none large, about 75 or 100 ft. the tallest. The foliage is drooping in a very marked way, set edgewise as to the flat plumes, so that while some are seen towards the bottom flat and plume-like, most of the plumes seem narrow and thread-like. Nearly every tree I saw was more or less marked by the knives and axes of the Indians, who use the bark for covering their houses and also for matting, and for making temporary portable huts, instead of tents. For this last purpose sections five or six feet long and two or three wide are pressed flat and secured from warping or splitting by binding them with thin strips of wood at the ends. These they carry about with them in their canoes, and in a few minutes they can be put together against slim poles and made into a good rain-proof hut. Every paddle that I have ever seen on the coast is made of this wood. It is a tree of moderately rapid growth and usually chooses ground that is rather boggy and mossy. Whether its network of roots makes the bog or not I am unable as yet to say, but the fact is that the ground is always extra heavy with sphagnum where it grows. {sketches: Near Kake Vil [and] Islet opposite Kake Vil}

Date Original



Original journal dimensions: 11.5 x 18 cm.

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Holt-Atherton Special Collections, University of the Pacific Library

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