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Yosemite Wildflower Trails (1975) by Dana C. Morgenson


FOREWORD

The purpose of a National Park such as Yosemite is the preservation, in its natural state, of a great scenic area of national significance, together with all of its wildlife, be it plant or animal. Its objective is therefore to provide us with a great nature preserve of superlative character which we and our posterity may visit and enjoy. However, the privilege that we may have of its enjoyment carries with it a large degree of responsibility on the part of all of us to help maintain the natural conditions we should expect to find. The beauty that holds our eyes as we gaze over the wild landscape or examine more closely its detail is the result of ages-long interactions of an intricate complex of physical and biological forces. It has its fragile aspects, and this is notably the case as to the aggregations or scatterings of the particular kinds of flowering plants composing elements of the communities of vegetation. The flower-strewn areas and the flowers themselves, both of which we so admire, are easily disrupted by our thoughtless actions. All of us, by treading lightly and merely admiring, can leave but little if any trace of ever having passed that way.

In the following charming account our author introduces us to many of the wildflowers of Yosemite National Park and enables us to know and thereby appreciate them more fully. He leads us to them through the seasons and along the trails he knows so well. His is a first-hand experience with them through many years of residence in the Park and travel on its trails. Moreover, he has had the good fortune of having been in long association with Mary Tresidder who had an abiding love for Yosemite’s wild places and especially for its wildflowers. Her knowledge of the flowers was sound. I recall the several occasions when, at one or another of the Curry Company’s High Sierra Camps, I would find by the door of the dining tent a newly-written, lengthy and accurate listing of, and interesting comments on, the flowers to be found in bloom in the immediate area during the week I merely happened to arrive. They were in Mary Tresidder’s hand; she had fastened them there. And then, out on the trail, when perchance I found her together with a group of her old friends, her questions and comments on the flowers she had seen showed again her love and knowledge of them. Much of her love and knowledge of Yosemite’s wildflowers she has passed on to our author.

Carl W. Sharsmith



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