John Muir


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fold, ridge beyond ridge. The Big Smoky mtns all timbered save a few heads; these grassy and covered by tall rhododendron catawniensis. We came up here by surrey from Cranberry, left at 7, arrived at 1:30 P.M. A glorious forest mtn side; streams singing everywhere, cornfields in rocks, weeds and girlded trees and fallen trunks and stumps on steepest hillsides mtn sides and good corn. Canby calls them elevated cornfields. Easy to get living here, too easy. Miserable overworked young mothers, more pale bare footed girls. Wonderful ride of 18 ms; noblest deciduous forests. The sugar maples just turning to flowers in some, one brilliant plum in the yel grass, others tinted in masses, yellows and reds infinitely graduated, but some trees all pale yel, beautiful every leaf as a petal. Dogwood making brave show with berries bright red as well lvs; sassafras trying its best show and Oxydendron and lissa, not enough hemlock to do harm in the vast sea of round bossy tops, beech , birch, chestnut, oak, liriodendron, etc. The summit of Roan mtn along ridge from ¼ to ½ m wide, 2 ms long, mostly treeless, covered with clumps of rhododendron catawbiensis, almost pure; Menzusii small at foot of rhodo and licophyllon next to rhodo, then charming Houstonia, a few wh are in flr; a considerable area with grass and sedge on 2 ft of humus; saxifrage, etc. a flora too artic for this elevation, 6000. [Sept 25]. Finest drive in America from Cranberry to Blowing Rock; magnificent forests, fine road, many dells and gorges, streams crossing the road in cascades; Pinus pungens, Frigida. Blowing Rock hotel big but rather rough, fine view of mtn, 4000 alt. [Sept 26]. Ride to Lenoir down hill

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Original journal dimensions: 9 x 15 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