Ode to summer, moving towards fall

Grand Staircase-Escalante/Douglas C. Pizac, AP

Bears Ears/U.S. Dept. of the Interior photo

Before moving on to today’s intended post, consider acting on Administration moves to shrink Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monuments. These efforts are urged by extraction industries which rarely restore what they’ve disrupted. They can get theirs from elsewhere.

The Washington Post offered a strong editorial on the issue the other day.

Follow my suit by calling your representatives in Congress to demand these monuments be saved–just as they are–for future generations to learn from and enjoy. Consider helping the Public Lands Defense fund of The Wilderness Society which seeks financial support for legal challenges.


American Conservationist John Muir

When thinking about the elixir of hiking in the fresh air along a mountain ridge in the Sierra’s, I can’t help it that my thoughts sometimes return to appreciation for the iconic conservationist, John Muir.

In Meditations of John Muir: Nature’s Temple, which I’ve quoted from before, comes #24: “The Very Best Bed Imaginable”.

It is from this tree, called Red Fir by the lumbermen, that mountaineers cut boughs to sleep on when they are so fortunate as to be within its limit. Two or three rows of the sumptuous plushy-fronded branches, overlapping along the middle, and a crescent of smaller plumes mixed to one’s taste with ferns and flowers for a pillow, form the very best bed imaginable. The essence of the pressed leaves seems to fill every pour of one’s body. Falling water makes a soothing hush, while the spaces between the grand spires afford noble openings through which to gaze dreamily into the starry sky. The fir woods are fine sauntering-grounds at almost any time of year, but finest in autumn when the noble trees are hushed in the hazy light and drip with balsam; and the flying, whirling seeds, escaping from the ripe cones, mottle the air like flocks of butterflies. Even in the richest part of these unrivaled forests where so many noble trees challenge admiration we linger fondly among the colossal firs and extol their beauty again and again, as if no other tree in the world could henceforth claim our love.

pine bough bed

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