135 when the Ind [Indian] sum [summer] is fairly ripe when sunset purple is richer & more [pervading] than at other times & evening stillness is more profound. The air was filled with gossamer films of spiders. The Modoc landscape was composed of 3 parts, on the left there lay the [Relt] Lake, placid as glass full of purple reflections so responsive [to the] sky both in calmness & color it seemed itself a sky. On the right icy Shasta & a belt of forest & the black weird lava beds stretched between On your the right a calm placid lake in the right a calm [ ] [Lofty] [Shasta] & a belt of wood & the weird black lava bedsstretched between forming the main body of the landscape The lake a sky. The forest had
136 no marked feature [save] Shasta looming above it. There is a strange fascination for me in deserts, swamps sage plains & heathy bogs, but in that [wide] expanse of rigid lava there seemed to be something repelling. It had an uncanny look that [riveted] ones attention without attracting. Some places sufficient sage to make gray, others black which in most places the [scarcity] veg [vegetation] seemed somehow as if singed & smoked. We watched the sunset [from] the bluff. The purple on lake & sky the rosy glow on Shasta & the tranquil flush glorified even the flinty lava beds. Stealing alike lake & lava Next morning Van Bremer led us down the bluff. Just at foot there is a square enclosed by a rough stone wall wh [which] looks like a corral, this is the grave yard where some 30 soldiers lie with their heads to the
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