Wednesday, July 18, 2007

John Muir told America about "God's country"


Watching the daybreak and sunrise. The pale rose and purple sky changing softly to daffodil yellow and white, sunbeams pouring through the passes between the peaks and over the Yosemite domes, making their edges burn; the silver firs in the middle ground catching the glow on their spiry tops, and our camp grove fills and thrills with the glorious light. Everything awakening alert and joyful…

John Muir,
Entry for "July 19" from
My First Summer in the Sierra, 1911.
California As I Saw It, 1849-1900

On July 19, 1869, naturalist John Muir set pen to paper to capture his experience of awakening in the Sierra Nevada Mountains of California. Published in 1911, My First Summer in the Sierra is based on Muir's original journals and sketches of his 1869 stay in the vicinity of the Yosemite River Valley. His journal tracks his four-month visit to Yosemite and his ascent of Mt. Hoffman and other peaks in the range. Along the way, he describes the flora and fauna as well as the geography and geology of the area.


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