Synopses & Reviews
From the photographer who brought Thoreau's Walden and Cape Cod to life comes a new work combining classic literature with brand-new photography. This time, Scot Miller takes on the seminal work of John Muir, My First Summer in the Sierra. The book details Muir's first extended trip to the Sierra Nevada in what is now Yosemite National Park, a landscape that entranced him immediately and had a profound effect on his life. The towering waterfalls, natural rock formations, and abundant plant and animal life helped Muir develop his views of the natural world, views that would eventually lead him to push for the creation of the national parks.
My First Summer in the Sierra is illustrated with Miller's stunning photographs, showcasing the dramatic landscape of the High Sierra plus John Muir's illustrations from the original edition and several previously unpublished illustrations from his 1911 manuscript. The publication of My First Summer in the Sierra inspired many to journey there, and this newly illustrated edition will surely inspire many more.
This book is being published in collaboration with Yosemite Conservancy and, for each copy sold, Scot Miller is making a donation to Yosemite Conservancy. My First Summer in the Sierra won the National Outdoor Book Award.
In the summer of 1869, John Muir made his first long trip to Yosemite. When a friend offered him the chance to accompany his flock of sheep and a shepherd to the high pastures of the Sierra, it was an opportunity Muir could not resist. My First Summer in the Sierra is the journal he kept of those summer days, of the wildlife and plant life, and of his explorations into the magical places of the mountains.
Muir kept this journal on his first extended trip to Yosemite in 1869. Here he faithfully recorded his impressions of the dazzling animal and plant life he encountered in the magnificent Sierra.
An illustrated editon of John Muir's MY FIRST SUMMER IN THE SIERRA.
“Writing, Muir once said, is 'like the life of a glacier, one eternal grind.' My First Summer in the Sierra, his best and most enduring book, extends the analogy. Just as the unforgettable granite domes of Yosemite, so impressive, impassive and seemingly impermeable, were molded and shaped by patient glaciation, each journal entry here has been sculpted and polished by the man who considered glaciers proof of 'Nature as a poet, an enthusiastic workingman.'
'Everything in Nature called destruction must be creation, a change from beauty to beauty,' Muir advises us in these pages, distilling what he learned during his life-changing three and a half months in the Sierra.
In the mountains he called the 'Range of Light,' such insights come more easily, he said, because
'everything is perfectly clean and pure and full of divine lessons . . . until the hand of God becomes visible.'”
from the foreword by
Dayton Duncan and Ken Burns
About the Author
John Muir (1838-1914) was one of the most influential conservationists and nature writers in American history. He was instrumental in the creation and passage of the National Parks Act, and founder of the Sierra Club, acting as its president until his death. Muir was a spirit so free that all he did to prepare for an expedition was to "throw some tea and bread into an old sack and jump the back fence."
Table of Contents
Foreword by Dayton Duncan and Ken Burns vii
I. Through the Foothills with a Flock of Sheep 1
II. In Camp on the North Fork of the Merced 20
III. A Bread Famine 49
IV. To the High Mountains 57
V. The Yosemite 76
VI. Mount Hoffman and Lake Tenaya 97
VII. A Strange Experience 117
VIII. The Mono Trail 130
IX. Bloody Cañon and Mono Lake 143
X. The Tuolumne Camp 155
XI. Back to the Lowlands 170
A Statement from Yosemite Conservancy 181
Artists Statement 184
List of Illustrations 188