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June 26, 1862: Bell Station

June 26, 2012

Camp 78

Two days were spent in examining this region—one day in climbing Pacheco’s Peak, a very conspicuous peak from all sides of this point, the other in climbing a peak about eight miles north. We were thus enabled to work up the general topography entirely across this chain. Everything shows that we are now in a moister climate, getting fresh breezes from the sea. It is cooler, and trees are more frequent and green.

I ought to have said that the San Luis Ranch which we had just left contains nearly fifty thousand acres, and that it has the feed of as much more territory. They keep an immense number of sheep—some eighteen thousand belong to the ranch, but twice that number are brought in from elsewhere and rent pasture. The ranch is about eighteen miles long and six or eight wide. One valley, near where we camped, a plain nearly surrounded by hills, has as much as fifteen thousand or twenty thousand acres in it. On getting farther west the feed becomes better as we get away from the sheep.

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