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June 26, 1863: Tuolumne Meadows

June 26, 2013

Lembert Dome

Lembert Dome, Tuolumne Meadows; by Tom Hilton, on Flickr

Camp 117

[Today] we came on to this camp, the Soda Springs, on the upper Tuolumne River, at the altitude of 8,700 feet. The river valley here forms a flat nearly a mile wide, green and grassy, while around is the grandest alpine scenery. It is a most lovely spot. Several mineral springs are here—cold water, charged with carbonic acid gas, giving it the name of “soda” springs. The waters are charged with iron and various other metallic salts, are highly tonic, pleasant to the taste, and would be worth a fortune anywhere in the old states.

Swertia 02

Frasera speciosa; by Tom Hilton, on Flickr

A small party exploring for a road camped near us and brought us papers, with the bad news of the invasion of Pennsylvania. The night, as all our nights are here, was perfectly cloudless and clear, the moonlight on the snowy peaks around us forming a beautiful scene. The frost, as usual, settled heavily on our blankets that night.

Specimens collected: Carex filifolia var. erostrata; Eriogonum incanum; Calyptridium umbellatum; Calyptridium monospermum; Carex fissuricola; Carex hoodii; Frasera speciosa; Trifolium monanthum var. monanthum; Penstemon rydbergii var. oreocharis; Montia chamissoi; Potentilla drummondii subsp. bruceae; Juncus nevadensis; Carex barbarae; Gayophytum diffusum subsp. parviflorum; Linanthus harknessii.

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