John Muir


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Alt. floor Big Rock Yosemite 4750. In this valley a huge moutonee rock rises abruptly in the middle. This valley is about ¾ mile wide, dry and ferny at head with azalea, alder etc and all their conifers along the river and in the middle the densest groves of alder and young libo 25 ft high so close difficult getting through. Big Rock creek is about twice the size of Yosemite creek. It divides on tis big delta into two main branches the largest to the west easely crossed on a big old jamb of logs which has withstood every flood for many years on account of four trees growing in rocks about ten feet apart alder and libo. Had a feast of raspberries on its banks where the bears had been feasting before me very abundant. Vegetation as in Yosemite. Trend N 50 E. The broad beveled mountain bounds the valley on the N, streacked and dotted with live oak half way up with pines higher - a bewildering mass of moutonee rocks push forward into the valley from the base of it with many grassy flats among them here and there and Manzanita where the bears love to feed, their tracks ab. The rocks lavishly fringed with ferns especially cheailanthes. This Yosemite is about 2 miles long. Deer are abundant here and it may be called Deer peak. The S all has a sharp peak with well marked avalanche channels. Avalanch peak and a dome not very high and a fine rock with a crownshaped summit - Crown rock. The big beveled wall of Deer park is continious down almost to Hetch Hetchy. A mile or two below the park there is another flat or park rather dry and sandy and opposite this about ½ mile up the beveled wall there is a remarkable cave or grotto formed by the falling out of a large mass of the rock leaving the roof of a firmer stratum overhead and also the two sides evenly cut as if artificial making an apartment about 50 ft deep and the same width. This may give the name Grotto mountain. The rock seems to have been shaken out during earthquake perhaps the Inyo. Strange that nature can affect in scenery, etc simply by giving mountain a shake, think of all the taluses, Royal arches, etc. In Deer park and other Yosemites of this grand canyon there is trees enough and floral beauty enough to make glorious and truly significant all the parks and gardens of the world. (sketch of cave)

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Original journal dimensions: 10.5 x 17.5 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