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My First Summer in the Sierra: with…
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My First Summer in the Sierra: with Illustrations (original 1911; edition 2013)

by John Muir (Author)

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7811023,476 (4.05)18
John Muir, a young Scottish immigrant, had not yet become a famed conservationist when he first trekked into the foothills of the Sierra Nevada, not long after the Civil War. He was so captivated by what he saw that he decided to devote his life to the glorification and preservation of this magnificent wilderness. "My First Summer in the Sierra," whose heart is the diary Muir kept while tending sheep in Yosemite country, enticed thousands of Americans to visit this magical place, and resounds with Muir's regard for the "divine, enduring, unwasteable wealth" of the natural world. A classic of environmental literature, "My First Summer in the Sierra" continues to inspire readers to seek out such places for themselves and make them their own.… (more)
Member:GoodTreeAcademy
Title:My First Summer in the Sierra: with Illustrations
Authors:John Muir (Author)
Info:J Missouri (2013), Edition: Illustrated ed., 182 pages
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My First Summer in the Sierra by John Muir (1911)

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» See also 18 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 10 (next | show all)
Unreadable.
Poetical and ponderous sermons on nature; eyerollingly irritating to the modern eye.
I realize it was written in 1869... and was likely intentionally... poetic and quasi-religious in tone. I love the journal descriptions of camp life and daily observations had they not been cut far too short by his purple ponderings. This is not to say, as a man, that he wasn't profoundly important and influential... just that this piece doesn't transport us to the Sierras as much as it hijacks us into sitting through church.

  runningbeardbooks | Sep 29, 2020 |
“We are now in the mountains and they are in us, kindling enthusiasm, making every nerve quiver, filling every pore and cell of us. Our flesh-and bone tabernacle seems transparent as glass to the beauty about us, as if truly an inseparable part of it, thrilling with the air and trees, streams and rocks, in the waves of the sun, - a part of all nature, neither old nor young, sick nor well, but immortal.” p.20

A record of Muir’s activities, discoveries, and philosophic musings with unusual insight into the beauties of nature and life. 12 plates reproduced from photographs by Herbert W. Gleason and 21 textual illustrations from sketches made by the author in 1869. Octavo, original dark green cloth with gilt and light green stamped picture of forest scene with mountains in background. "Muir was 72 years old when he began to prepare the journal of his first summer in the Sierra for publication. With the skillful editing of his mature years, he retains the refreshing spontaneity and enthusiasm of his youthful experiences." (Kimes bibliography)
  lazysky | Feb 13, 2018 |
This is not my usual style of book. It is a diary, with no real story, and with long and detailed descriptions of plants. It takes a while to get into the book, and took me almost nine months to finish it. Yet there is a progression to the diary. Particularly once Muir gets to higher elevations, then still higher, his delight becomes infectious, and the story moves quickly. Although the prose can be terribly purple, Muir back it up and justifies it with a fine eye for detail. I regretted getting to the end of the Sierra summer. ( )
  breic | Dec 31, 2016 |
My first summer in the Sierra by John Muir
Always enjoy the outside, walking discovering new things.
Have watched many on the John Muir Trail in CA and watched shows but having it all described is like being there, doing it ourselves.
Like listening to his journals and everything he sketches, plant, animal, etc.
I received this book from National Library Service for my BARD (Braille Audio Reading Device). ( )
  jbarr5 | Jan 7, 2016 |
I think some of the people who quote his "When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the universe" phrase would be surprised to see it in the context of the rest of the paragraph (p87). He relates a lot of what he sees to God's presence. At times I felt his gushing enthusiastic words were a bit over the top, and wondered that he could have so much boundless enthusiasm day after day--but my reaction is doubtless a result of our comparative ages. There were sections where his imagery was strongly appealing, e.g. "some [raindrops]sift spray through the shining needles, whispering peace and good cheer to each one of them." (p 69)
He does animate nature; I thought it was refreshing the way he would identify plants etc as people, in a manner we are used to only hearing from Native Americans. I wonder how much of our innate attraction to specific landscapes has to do with some genetic predisposition: he comes from a Scots family which I assume lived for centuries in highlands.
I wonder what reference books he might have had with him. For example, in the beginning he wonders at the bird that walks under water in the streams but by the end he names it ouzel in his observations. ( )
  juniperSun | Jul 20, 2015 |
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» Add other authors (13 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
John Muirprimary authorall editionscalculated
Davis, MikeIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ehrlich, GretelIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Praetzellis, AdrianNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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In the great Central Valley of California there are only two seasons, -- spring and summer.
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When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the universe. (p 87)
...we are reminded that everything is flowing--going somewhere, animals and so-called lifeless rocks as well as water. Thus the snow flows fast or slow in grand beauty-making glaciers and avalanches; the air in majestic floods carrying minerals, plant leaves, seeds, spores, with streams of music and fragrance; water streams carrying rocks both in solution and in the form of mud particles, sand, pebbles, and boulders. Rocks flow from volcanoes like water from springs, and animals flock together and flow in currents modified by stepping, leaping, gliding, flying, swimming, etc. While the stars go streaming through space pulsed on and on forever like blood globules in Nature's warm heart. (p 130)
We never know where we must go nor what guides we are to get--men, storms, guardian angels, or sheep. Perhaps almost everybody in the least natural is guided more than he is ever aware of. All the wilderness seems to be full of tricks and plans to drive and draw us up into God's Light. (p 136)
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John Muir, a young Scottish immigrant, had not yet become a famed conservationist when he first trekked into the foothills of the Sierra Nevada, not long after the Civil War. He was so captivated by what he saw that he decided to devote his life to the glorification and preservation of this magnificent wilderness. "My First Summer in the Sierra," whose heart is the diary Muir kept while tending sheep in Yosemite country, enticed thousands of Americans to visit this magical place, and resounds with Muir's regard for the "divine, enduring, unwasteable wealth" of the natural world. A classic of environmental literature, "My First Summer in the Sierra" continues to inspire readers to seek out such places for themselves and make them their own.

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