John Muir


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Pedicularis largest and showiest of all. Priula Kalmia, Spiraea (not in flower), draba, lupine, Dicentra, Tellima, Mertensia, Veratrum, Sedum, Eupatorium, cranberry, dwarf birch, alder, 5 willows, several sedges, a liliaceous plant, and a heathwort with delightful purple flowers like a bryanthus, and silene, buckbean. Most of the birds have already paired. The ptarmigan would run with heads down, among the grasses, seeking to hide until they were a few yards away from the next, then would fly up with a loud hearty scolding “kek-kek-kap,” and take up a position at 50 years distance or so, where they could observe us. The cocks seem remarkably strong on the wing and vigorous in their cackling. We saw a great many and thought them happy out on that wide moor, with an abundance of berries all summer, spring, and fall, and alder buds for the winter. The sandpipers had fine feeding grounds about the shallow pools. The gray moor is a fine place for curlews, too, and snip. The loon had the most dismal call imaginable. Of all the plants the primula and bryanthus-like heathwort were the most beautiful.

Date Original



Original journal dimensions: 11.5 x 21 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