Calm, clear, lovely day just closing. Not a hill, however small, or hint of any mountain, though many rise in a continuous chain parallel to the vast low sand plain divided by the long lagoon of Patos, telling of many a roaring stream from quick-melting glaciers. The Sirio cargo for this town has been discharged, and that Pelotas and for Port Alegre has been transferred to another of the Government steamers. A good many of the passengers have also left us for Alegre, and a few new ones have come aboard from Rio Negro for Montevideo. We expect to sail tomorrow at 4:00 A.M. Nov. 3. Left Rio Negro this morning about six o’clock. Sky cloudless, saved few whips and curls low down along western horizon, unchanged up to 1:00 P.M. Lagoon water muddy. Forms distinct line with open sea several miles out. A remarkably broad and bright belt of flashing, sparkling spangles in the wake of the sun, at their best in size and number. About two and a half hours after sunrise. We expect to reach Montevideo about tomorrow evening. Brazil said to form a vast plateau 1000 to 3,250 feet above the sea level, worn into low wide valleys and grooves by glacial and stream action. Grassy meadows and prairie-like plains are outspread between groves and forests on hills and ridges, excepting the mountain ranges and the heart of the immense basin of the Amazon where all the surface is forested or covered with bushes and separate groves. The highest mountains are said to be on the coast range toward the sea, and in the center forming two very long chains,
Original journal dimensions: 10 x 17 cm.
Holt-Atherton Special Collections, University of the Pacific Library
John Muir, journals, drawings, writings, travel, journaling, naturalist