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[To face 179, VOL II.

uninteresting, and we reached Colorado Springs (six thousand feet above the sea) at half-past ten at night, having travelled about six hundred miles, through the most varied, grand, and interesting portion of the Rocky Mountain system. The next morning, after breakfast, I went on by the branch railway to Manitou Springs (6360 feet)—the “Soda Springs of the old-time trappers, mentioned in some of Mayne Reid's inimitable stories. Here, where the mountains rise abruptly from the great plains, which are themselves more than six thousand feet above the sea, are a group of springs situated near together on a small plateau, yet each of different character and composition. The most interesting is the " boiling spring" or "soda spring,” which is so full of gas that it looks as if boiling, but is really effervescing. It is as clear as crystal, and tastes just like good aërated water. The springs are surrounded by several pretty hotels, and a small number of shops, boarding-houses, and private residences. I spent the morning walking up some of the curious little valleys that open at once into the mountains, and found a few interesting plants, among which was the Monarda fistulosa, of a very bright lilac pink colour, some campanulas, and a few others. After dinner, it being too hot to walk, I hired a buggy to drive me round the Garden of the Gods and Glen Eyrie, a distance of about seven miles. This consists of a tract of undulating or hummocky land backed by a range of cliffs, and presenting scores and even hundreds of isolated rock masses of varying heights, but generally about ten or twenty feet, and worn by wind-action into the strangest forms, which have received distinctive names. They are composed of sandstone in nearly horizontal strata of varying hardness, whence has resulted their curious shapes. Some are like pillars with overhanging tops, but most of them, when seen from the right point of view, are ludicrous representations of men or animals. In one we see an old Irish peasant, in another a Scotchman with plaid and glengarry cap, and one is named the Lady of the Garden. There is a cobbler, a bear, a buffalo, a Punch and Judy, and the Squatter ;-the last is here reproduced from a photograph.

But even more remarkable than these are the wonderful group of isolated rocks, forming what is called the gateway to the garden. Here are two enormous walls or slabs of red sandstone rising abruptly out of the smooth grassy surface to a height of three hundred and fifty feet, and leaving about the same distance between them, in the centre of which is a smaller similar rock. Through this opening is seen the fine rocky mass of Pike's Peak, snow-clad in spring and flecked with snow in summer, contrasting with the rich red of the sandstone gateway and the flower-specked sward, so as to produce a landscape which for singularity and beauty I have never seen equalled. In nature, as in the view here reproduced, the precipices forming the gateway have the appearance of rocky hills pierced by a chasm, and it is only when one goes through the gate and looks back, and then walks completely round them, that one sees that they are mere vertical slabs of sandstone, quite comparable with those which form the fantastic groups and pillars already described, but of much greater dimensions. Looked at from another point of view, the upper ridge is seen to be worn into strange shapes with openings and pinnacles, the central mass having excellent representations of a seal and a bear, while on the left is seen the figure of an Indian in his robes. From yet another point the same masses, when seen edgeways, appear as a wonderful group of lofty rock-pinnacles, which are appropriately named the Cathedral Spires. Glen Eyrie, a little way further north, is a small valley terminating in a narrow gorge full of isolated columnar masses of various forms and overhanging; often mushroom-like tops, as shown in the photograph, have quite a distinct character, but have not the varied beauty of the “ Garden."

The next day (Monday, July 18) I went on to Denver, and arranged with Miss Eastwood, whom I had met in May, to go to Graymount, the nearest station to Gray's Peak, for a few days' botanizing. Starting at eight the next morning, we went up very picturesque valleys to the mining settlement of Georgetown (eight thousand five hundred feet), and thence on to Graymount, eight miles further, in which distance we



[To face p. 180, VOL. II.

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