constantly more map like & comprehensive. The wall on whose sculptured side are creeping seem to grow loftier the nearer we approach its summit here we pass a huge projecting boss whose lichened [ ] surface shows little change since it was first left bare by the receding glacier. Here a [white-battered] angular gully marks the path of a rock avalanche. Here again is a smoother abraded groove the channel of an avalanche of winter show. & here again a tricklling stream slipping dripping oozing, bankless & channeless, a pathless [wanderer] from the summit down from precipice to precipice making glad the green nodding sedges & ferns that line its course. In level tablets soil has accumulated & there you may see the flaming cardinal mimulus & rosy mints & glowing cushions of golden
11 bahia. Nor in these lofty hanging gardens is their any lack of common plants. The homely yarrow & clover & honeysuckle & prickly brier rose. With fitting sunshine & basking lizards & butterflies and burly blunt mannered bumblebees. After the highest point is gained we follow a level terrace wh [which] conducts along the wall to the grand amphitheatre where pours the fall the noblest [water] manifestation of falling water to be found in the valley. When first in sight it seems within reach into the hand. Yet is near half a mile away, as you approach it seems to recede. The grandeur of the rock sculp, wh [which] environs it on the west is alltogether glorious & well worthy the noblest waterfall in the Sierra. In the afternoon an immense shadow sweeps out over the stream channel & far across over the shaggy fields of
Original journal dimensions: 9 x 14.5 cm.
Holt-Atherton Special Collections, University of the Pacific Library
John Muir, journals, drawings, writings, travel, journaling, naturalist