John Muir


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Circa Date

circa 1887



glacial debris.

After the October storms had cleared away I sauntered slowly Shastaward, enjoying the fine

landscapes of the Upper Sacramento, giving time for the snows, that I knew had fallen to be


On November 1st I left Sisson’s for the edge of the timber line. Intending to reach the summit

on the 2nd.

My barometer as well as the clouds gave notice of storm. The sky was [filling] [or

filmy]. Sisson and his guide said, “I don’t like the looks of the sky. You had better wait till

tomorrow.” I knew my chance lay in reaching the summit before the breaking of the impending

storm. Therefore I started.

Colors of willow, spireae [spiraea], maple, oak mottled sky, gray chaparral, brown needles &

[and] burs. Deer - Rough lava - Sceniry [scenery] as we ascend. Fir denser, as we ascend.

Yellow lichen. Horses in snow. Camp - between two clumps overleaning.

Ascent. Stars in half sky. Dull clouds. Piece of moon, shone dull - Tedious climb.


Beauty of snow sparkle. Daybreak - Calm. Firm packed snow. Downward motion of snow in fine frosty particles.

Ice on top. Steam sulphur. 3 summits. Fragments. View westward truely [truly] mountainous. Ancient glaciers. Brown mountains. Amount of snow. Lava beds. Valleys. Groves. Lassen’s Butte, largest of cluster. Mt’ns [mountains] of coast. Clouds on summit. Snowdrift. Clouds on clouds near and far. On Whitney glacier[s], ice fountain.

Nov. 3rd. Glorious display of sun filled storm clouds filling all Shasta valley like a rolling sea of silver. Towards Lassen’s Butte, also over the valleys of Pitt & McCloud. Lassen now rising like an island from the wide billowly ocean, now foundering lost in one stormy expanse. The sun, meanwhile, falling free on the young snows of Shasta. Every boss glistening. Every groove blue in shadow. Soon storm clouds begin to sweep the mountains. The tops of the silver clouds begin to break in foam, and tear off in long streamers.

Date Occurred


Resource Identifier

MuirReel32 Notebook04 Img015.Jpeg

Contributing Institution

Holt-Atherton Special Collections, University of the Pacific Library

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