John Muir


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48 Towards morning sun shown with [exquisite] [bright] blooms of all the [clear] shining after rain Night hawks spotted wing lighted up Amazing distinctions of every [object] far & near a perfect paradise gentians petals glistening with rain drops [sketch]

Right Smart Sight [ ] chipmunks, Sparrows, mice etc If Mono Indians could tell us anything about volcanoes [near] [placer] when then peaks were all a burnin in rows Plants of every countenance & climb Singularly rich in all the elements of landscape beauty


Yo Sem [Yosemite] gray rocky trough with level meadow bottom

Of all the stupendous gorges which groove & notch the Sierra Nevada summits mountains Bloody Canon [Canyon] is the most [undividedly] impressive I have yet seen from its topmost glacial lake through its whole extent [length to the very end of the lateral moraines] it acts squarely & irresistibly [ ] [ ] [ ] as a distinct mountain existence that we see & hear & feel [ ] [ ]. Like Yosemite, Bloody Can [Canyon] contains lakes & meadows & loud white cataracts & [side] [groves] topped with blue sky but these have no diversifying power its glistening chain of blue lakelets its thousand flowers its green dots of carex meadow are governed by the eclipsing & ever present sublimity of its [vast] brown & red [cliffy] walls In Yosemite we can rest from sublimity in the sheltering groves [& thickets] of quiet common beauty We walk at ease among [fragrant] tangles of [fragrant] [Azalian] [homelike] with fragrance & the hum of bees, or lose ourselves amid the glossy green oaks & poplars. & fancy ourselves in the broad oak opening [the West] or climb [ ] foothills of debris with colored thickets of flowering shrubs But in the [weird] gloomy canon [canyon] we seem to be in a new strange world

Date Original

November 1869


Original journal dimensions: 10 x 16.5 cm.

Resource Identifier



Holt-Atherton Special Collections, University of the Pacific Library

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