John Muir


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Circa Date

circa 1887



Nov. 13. Bright day. Fossils. [8/3] specimens in a cliff 275 feet above the plain. The cliff is beautifully ornate with wavy lines of red and gray sand. Like a cornice to the plain. Tufts of eriogonums, sage and grasses. When I returned, [Jerome] came in with the head of a mule deer. Shasta unclouded.

Nov. 14. View from Wild Sheep Castle looking north. Lava blocks – tuft-grass between on scanty soil. A few cedars, Mahogany bushes? lupines, sage, linosyrus [linosyris], phlox, and ribes. A wide expanse of smooth gray plain, sage covered, and dotted lightly with junipers. Then a calm glassy lake so responsive to the sky in color & texture, that it seems a sky itsself [itself]. It is surrounded by a broad edging of meadow-fine rich brown- shooting out into the pale yellow blue water plain, in long picturesque promontories. On the farther shore of the lake rise brown mountains shaded with gray & yellow, and reflected in the lake. Beyond these are higher mountains, darkened with timber. And beyond all, on the rim


of the sky is an assemblage of snowy peaks, with wide glacier valleys between ice sculptured. Hushed. Raven and owl croaking and hooting on the plain below. A whir in the cedar near by. The sky is brushed & filmed with gray & purple clouds. One [sketch] peak on the left of the landscape, one smooth slope of snow. The plain is broken with table rocks, fragments of the ancient fossiliferous deposits of the lake, when it covered all. The lake showing the process of filling and drying into plains. West icy Shasta. Two sides of a square pyramid. Snowy mountains stretching south eastward – Immense belts of forest in front. East no snowy mountains. Everywhere the lengthening reflections reach over the lake- the sky darkens – night comes near and I go down to our hunter camp. A still brooding evening, with plenty of brown, purple, white and yellow. Ride down the old lake, past many a grassy knoll and rocky cliff to Klamath Lake, along the shore scaring ducks & geese – through miles

Date Occurred


Resource Identifier

MuirReel32 Notebook04 Img017.Jpeg

Contributing Institution

Holt-Atherton Special Collections, University of the Pacific Library

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