October 21 (1975, 1976, 1978, 1981, 2000)
Strange and Wonderful Occurrence

10/21/75   morning in wren palace listening to brahms and watching a flock of bushtits clamber through a grove of manzanita. muscles ache, dozens of small cuts and scratches: yesterday tim & katie & i went out to canyonland and cleared some more road ~ ninety yards more! almost to the elderberry meadow. today i will go out there alone and try to push on as far as possible ~ to the end, that is, to where i can go no farther in the jeep. and once that point is reached ~ probably only sixty yards beyond where we stopped yesterday ~ i will be able to begin to assemble the materials for cabaƱita. [...]

[Russell Towle's journal]


[Russell Towle's journal]

10/21/78   morning. another cool night—49°... yesterday the lumber finally came for michael's deck, and we got about half of it done. i really like michael and marsha, and got really nice vibes from some friends of theirs, frank and michael (♀), who live down the street a ways towards dutch flat...

a strange and wonderful occurrence yesterday. after i wrote the entry in this journal, as i drove towards michael's in willy, who is finally running again after centuries of trials and tribulations [...] i wondered what kind of omen the world would provide if i prayed for a ‘reading’ on [person].

soon i was working hard, and there was no time to think about [person].

but, in the afternoon, i was out on the deck, looked at the sky and there it was ~ a rainbow on a cloud! i shouted, look! an extremely rare optical phenomenon! and we all gazed at the beauty. it was the same thing [a reference to the “angelic gazelle” optical phenomenon seen and described July 8 1976:  http://northforkbookofdays.blogspot.com/2011/07/july-8-1976-1978-1982-1984-1986-1989.html ], only you could see the arc, and such lovely colors! oh, what beauty! an extremely rare rainbow, a portion of arc, convex towards the sun, almost at the very zenith, of about sixty degrees in length ~ on the day i wondered what the world would say about [person] and i! and this was no fleet-footed gazelle, sure to run away. it was just intense colors suffusing wispy cirro-cumulus clouds, and lasted much longer than the flaming gazelle.

so, what does this mean?”

[Russell Towle's journal]

10/21/81   Wednesday morning, before dawn. The fall colors are intensifying rapidly. Every maple tree across the canyon in the gullies of Giant Gap Ridge is a blob of gold.”

[Russell Towle's journal]

Date: Sat, 21 Oct 2000 12:03:31 -0800
To: Dave_Lawler
From: Russell Towle
Subject: Amos Bowman

Hi Dave,

One of these days we ought to go to the Bancroft and look at the old maps and manuscripts of Amos Bowman, who did a lot of work on the Eocene rivers in the early 1870s, and made lots and lots of maps. Apparently he was with the California Geo Survey and worked under Whitney.
[Below, a little about this Amos Bowman, copied from:
Portions relevant to his work in California are in boldface. ]
Notes  Amos B. Bowman,"the second son of Benjamin B. and Mary (Clemens) Bowman, was born at Blair, Waterloo County, Ontario, 1838, and died at Fairhaven, Washington, in June 1894. The following article giving a sketch of the deceased's life, appeared in the World-Herald of Fairhaven, Washington, June 28th, 1894: "With the passing away of Amos Bowman, the founder of Anacortes, whose death occurred last week, the Puget sound country loses one of its best known and most historic figures. Before and during the boom of 1890 there was perhaps no more conspicuous character in this part of the country than Amos Bowman, and none who knew better its great possibilities and who labored more zealously for its development and progress. Mr. Bowman was comparatively a young man, having been born in Blair, Waterloo County, Ontario, in 1839. While quite young his family moved to Ohio, where young Bowman attended college, and at the age of seventeen he went to New York to further prosecute his studies. He took up short hand and acquired such proficiency in it as to soon secure a position on the New York Tribune under Horace Greely, who became his friend. During the early days of California he came to the Pacific coast and identified himself with the Sacramento Union, at that time the principal journal of the West. He then went to Germany and studied three years at the universities of Freiberg and Munich, graduating as a civil and mining engineer, afterwards traveling all over Europe, as the correspondent of the New York Tribune. Upon his return to America he again went to California and again took up journalism, for several years editing, in San Francisco, the Mining and Scientific Press. In this capacity he soon began to be looked upon as an authority on all matters relating to geology, and later assumed charge of the California geological survey. He served in that capacity five years, meantime running the line between California and Nevada, and acquiring an extended reputation as a scientist. He was then invited to join the Canadian geological survey, which brought him north and with which he was connected up to the time of his death. In early days he surveyed the great Cariboo mining region, and prepared a great many reports about different sections of British Columbia. Early in his travels in the Northwest he became impressed with the location of Fidalgo island and took his family there in 1877. Anacortes were named after his wife, Anna Curtis, and to the building up of the town he devoted his best energies. In 1882 he began the publication of the Northwest Enterprise which was later merged into the Daily Progress. Owning much of the most valuable property on the island, he gave liberally in land to induce the building of a railroad up the Skagit valley, and during the boom he was considered a very wealthy man. Mr. Bowman's faith in Fidalgo island was something more than that of an enthusiast, it became a part of him, and so firm was his conviction that a great destiny was in store for the town he had founded that subsequent depression did not even dim his cheerfulness. Mr Bowman was no ordinary man; as a scientist he attained high rank, and in Ottawa, Washington City, and throughout the Pacific coast he was recognized as an authority on scientific matters. He was a member of the California geological survey, of the geological survey of the Dominion of Canada, and of the American institute of mining engineers, and had been a personal friend of the great Agassiz. His tastes were simple and his manner unaffected, but he possessed those manly qualities of mind and heart that gained for him a wide circle of friends. Of gentle and charitable disposition, he often impoverished himself to enrich others, and the sad news of his demise will occasion in many hearts a feeling of personal loss which only a knowledge and appreciation of his manly virtues could induce." He was married to Anna Curtis. His family consisted of four children, namely:..."

Date: Sat, 21 Oct 2000 17:27:03 -0800
To: "Brian Williams"
From: Russell Towle
Subject: Re: Dutch Flat Aplodontia

Hi Brian,

>Did you get the old field notes from Ed? Sorry I couldn't get the details
>to you sooner, but I knew you would probably like to see the whole packet
>which includes Dutch Flat and Blue Canyon. Neat eh?

Yes, Ed mailed me a copy, thanks much. The Pine Mound Hotel was quite close to where the gas station is now at the DF exit on I-80. Grinnell mentioned a report of a "civet cat" and this I surmise must have been a local (mistaken) name for the Ring-tailed Cat.

>I'd like to meet you sometime, but don't know when that will be. I've seen
>some of the trips you have lead for the Nevada County Land Trust and they
>look interesting.

It would be nice to meet and talk Aplodontia. The springs along the tracks west of Blue Canyon come from the Valley Springs rhyolite ash layer, ubiquitous in the northern Sierra, almost always supporting a perched water table, and on slopes with southerly aspect without heavy tree cover as near Blue Canyon, would have a luxuriant growth of thimbleberries and ferns and so on as Ginnell describes for his colony.

About aplodontia:

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