Steep Trails - California - Utah - Nevada - Washington - Oregon - The Grand Canyon By John Muir

 - Steep Trails

California-Utah-Nevada-Washington-Oregon-The Grand Canyon


John Muir


The papers brought together in - Page 1
Steep Trails - California - Utah - Nevada - Washington - Oregon - The Grand Canyon By John Muir - Page 1 of 81 - First - Home

Enter page number    Next

Number of Words to Display Per Page: 250 500 1000

Save Money On Flights

Steep Trails

California-Utah-Nevada-Washington-Oregon-The Grand Canyon


John Muir


The papers brought together in this volume have, in a general way, been arranged in chronological sequence. They span a period of twenty-nine years of Muir's life, during which they appeared as letters and articles, for the most part in publications of limited and local circulation. The Utah and Nevada sketches, and the two San Gabriel papers, were contributed, in the form of letters, to the San Francisco Evening Bulletin toward the end of the seventies. Written in the field, they preserve the freshness of the author's first impressions of those regions. Much of the material in the chapters on Mount Shasta first took similar shape in 1874. Subsequently it was rewritten and much expanded for inclusion in Picturesque California, and the Region West of the Rocky Mountains, which Muir began to edit in 1888. In the same work appeared the description of Washington and Oregon. The charming little essay "Wild Wool" was written for the Overland Monthly in 1875. "A Geologist's Winter Walk" is an extract from a letter to a friend, who, appreciating its fine literary quality, took the responsibility of sending it to the Overland Monthly without the author's knowledge. The concluding chapter on "The Grand Canyon of the Colorado" was published in the Century Magazine in 1902, and exhibits Muir's powers of description at their maturity.

Some of these papers were revised by the author during the later years of his life, and these revisions are a part of the form in which they now appear. The chapters on Mount Shasta, Oregon, and Washington will be found to contain occasional sentences and a few paragraphs that were included, more or less verbatim, in The Mountains of California and Our National Parks. Being an important part of their present context, these paragraphs could not be omitted without impairing the unity of the author's descriptions.

The editor feels confident that this volume will meet, in every way, the high expectations of Muir's readers. The recital of his experiences during a stormy night on the summit of Mount Shasta will take rank among the most thrilling of his records of adventure. His observations on the dead towns of Nevada, and on the Indians gathering their harvest of pine nuts, recall a phase of Western life that has left few traces in American literature. Many, too, will read with pensive interest the author's glowing description of what was one time called the New Northwest. Almost inconceivably great have been the changes wrought in that region during the past generation. Henceforth the landscapes that Muir saw there will live in good part only in his writings, for fire, axe, plough, and gunpowder have made away with the supposedly boundless forest wildernesses and their teeming life.

William Frederic Bade

Berkeley, California

May, 1918



I. Wild Wool II. A Geologist's Winter Walk III. Summer Days at Mount Shasta IV. A Perilous Night on Shasta's Summit V. Shasta Rambles and Modoc Memories VI. The City of the Saints VII. A Great Storm in Utah VIII. Bathing in Salt Lake IX. Mormon Lilies X. The San Gabriel Valley XI. The San Gabriel Mountains XII. Nevada Farms XIII. Nevada Forests XIV. Nevada's Timber Belt XV. Glacial Phenomena in Nevada XVI. Nevada's Dead Towns XVII. Puget Sound XVIII. The Forests of Washington XIX. People and Towns of Puget Sound XX. An Ascent of Mount Rainier XXI. The Physical and Climatic Characteristics of Oregon XXII. The Forests of Oregon and Their Inhabitants XXIII. The Rivers of Oregon XXIV. The Grand Canyon of the Colorado Footnotes


The Crest of the Wahsatch Range From a point about four miles north of Salt Lake City, Utah. From a photograph by Herbert W. Gleason

At Shasta Soda Springs A view of Mossbrae Falls, where a subterranean stream coming down from the glaciers of Mt. Shasta breaks through the vegetation and flows into the Sacramento River. From a photograph by Herbert W. Gleason

Mount Shasta after a Snowstorm A view from the west, near Sisson. From a photograph by Pillsbury's Pictures, Inc.

Mormon Lilies The plant is known in Utah as the Sego Lily, and in California and elsewhere as the Mariposa Tulip (Calochortus Nuttallii). From a photograph by Herbert W. Gleason

Along the Oregon Sea Bluffs A view near the town of Ecola, Oregon. From a photograph by Herbert W. Gleason

O'Neill's Point A favorite point of observation overlooking the Grand Canyon Of Arizona. Now called by the Indian name, Yavapai Point. From a photograph by Herbert W. Gleason



Moral improvers have calls to preach. I have a friend who has a call to plough, and woe to the daisy sod or azalea thicket that falls under the savage redemption of his keen steel shares. Not content with the so-called subjugation of every terrestrial bog, rock, and moorland, he would fain discover some method of reclamation applicable to the ocean and the sky, that in due calendar time they might be brought to bud and blossom as the rose. Our efforts are of no avail when we seek to turn his attention to wild roses, or to the fact that both ocean and sky are already about as rosy as possible - the one with stars, the other with dulse, and foam, and wild light. The practical developments of his culture are orchards and clover-fields wearing a smiling, benevolent aspect, truly excellent in their way, though a near view discloses something barbarous in them all. Wildness charms not my friend, charm it never so wisely: and whatsoever may be the character of his heaven, his earth seems only a chaos of agricultural possibilities calling for grubbing-hoes and manures.

Sometimes I venture to approach him with a plea for wildness, when he good-naturedly shakes a big mellow apple in my face, reiterating his favorite aphorism, "Culture is an orchard apples; Nature is a crab." Not all culture, however, is equally destructive and inappreciative.

Enter page number   Next
Page 1 of 81
Words from 1 to 1006 of 82482

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Next

More links: First 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 Last

Display Words Per Page: 250 500 1000

Africa (29)
Asia (27)
Europe (59)
North America (58)
Oceania (24)
South America (8)

List of Travel Books RSS Feeds

Africa Travel Books RSS Feed

Asia Travel Books RSS Feed

Europe Travel Books RSS Feed

North America Travel Books RSS Feed

Oceania Travel Books RSS Feed

South America Travel Books RSS Feed

Copyright © 2005 - 2012 Travel Guides