lilies, to last perhaps for ten or fifteen minutes, crop succeeding crop in endless order. Not a cloud visible except indistinct bars along the horizon to the eastward. Dolphins getting breakfast from seven to eight o’clock. Flying fish making short flight against the wind at a speed of ten or twelve knots. Afternoon breezy. Cooler. Sudden change in temperature. Very grateful. Night darkness now comes on shortly after six o’clock. Sunset as usual in formless cloud banks. Fine, breezy, starry evening. Dec. 23. Clear, cool morning. Temperature on deck 73 Deg. Wondrous reviving. Sea in a brisk welter, well whitened with breaking wavelets. Not a cloud, and but little haze, even on the horizon. A wide swath of dazzling brightness beneath the sun. A few flying fish. Some of them making vigorous flights of fifty to a hundred yards against the wind at a speed of ten or twelve miles an hour. Others glinting, flashing from wave-top to wave-top. Brighter than usual all day. Dazzling before noon, beneath the sun, but dim around the horizon toward evening. Clear overhead. With most beautiful lace lattern of cirrus, delicate beyond description, pure white on azure, with bits of mackerel form here and there. The sun yellow and dull red half an hour before night, lost in dark shapeless cloud mass fifteen or twenty minutes before setting. Wind continues steadily from N.E.
Original journal dimensions: 10 x 17 cm.
Holt-Atherton Special Collections, University of the Pacific Library
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John Muir, journals, drawings, writings, travel, journaling, naturalist