John Muir


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Circa Date

circa 1887



[I slept on not minding the doubling up until the Don’s prayers muttered to the Virgin for help to straighten himself awakened me. Other cases of comfortless unrefreshing sleep have been observed even in this air, but those are caused always I guess by the body having been previously burned or stupefied, damaged in some way before coming to the mountains.] Even [the] sheep sleep better here than on the lowlands & they always choose a high piece of ground, as if their ancestors had been mountaineers, which probably was the case as all the wild species known to science inhabit mountains. Where I suppose they find fewer enemies & can better escape the pursuit. How impressive [the tremendous energy of] a waterfall is during the still watches of the night. [ It sleeps not at all & its [the] roar & thunder seem then doubly loud & awe-inspiring. I hear the deep muffled reverberating tones [bass] of the Yosemite falls [in the great Yosemite Valley] & fancy I feel the ground shaking through that is not likely to be real at this distance. The fire light shows the beautiful branches of the tree [above me with their]


[superb rich plush of leaves and] They seem to be held out protectingly above me! [above our heads] with conscious love [as if for protection] & how bright the stars are [like lilies with long rays] The night as usual seems too precious for sleep. Tomorrow looks glorious in the light of this days employment X Trans The excitement of a visit to the head of the great falls, seeing it plunge into the lower world of the Valley has set my nerves vibrating as if they would never calm down again [a tingle]. Getting into camp early I set off with long swinging strides [down to the head of the falls & as the distance was only a few about 2 miles I soon reached the verge of the wall on the east side][after having gained my first grand view of the high Sierra from the summit of a commanding ridge that bounds our present camp on the East. The most extravagant description that I might give of this view would not/never so much as hint its grandeur & the spiritual glow that pervade & covered it to anyone who has not seen similar landscapes with their own eyes. The cautious slipping creeping approach to the tremendous verge of the

Date Occurred


Resource Identifier

MuirReel31 Notebook07 Img0029.jpg

Contributing Institution

Holt-Atherton Special Collections, University of the Pacific Library

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