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Title: Scenic Mount Lowe and Its Wonderful Railway
Author: James, George Wharton, 1858-1923
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

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_The Grandest Railway in the World_




How the Sierra Madre Mountains have been surmounted by
Electric Cars, and the most Beautiful and Grand Views of
Mountain, Valley and Ocean Scenery made accessible to all






Travelers' Hand-book to Southern California
  In and Out of the Old Missions of California
    In and Around the Grand Canyon
      The Indians of the Painted Desert Region
  Indian Basketry; How to make Indian and other Baskets
Etc., Etc.



     Centuries old are the mountains;
     Their foreheads wrinkled and rifted,
     Helios crowns by day,
     Pallid, serene by night;
     From their bosoms uptossed
     The snows are driven and drifted
     Like Lithonus' beard
     Streaming, disheveled and white.

     Thunder and tempest of wind
     Their trumpets blow in the vastness;
     Phantoms of mist and rain,
     Cloud and the shadow of cloud,
     Pass and repass by the gates
     Of their inaccessible fastness;
     Ever unmoved they stand,
     Solemn, eternal and proud.

                 in "The Mask of Pandora."



Mountains, by Longfellow                                        4

Man's Love for the Mountains                                    7

Distinguished Testimony                                        13

Mount Lowe Railway                                             21

Origin of the Mount Lowe Railway                               23

Rubio Canyon                                                   27

Great Cable Incline                                            29

Echo Mountain                                                  31

Echo Mountain House                                            33

Lowe Observatory                                               35

Professor Larkin                                               38

The Spectroscope                                               43

Great World's Fair Searchlight                                 47

Operating Machinery of Great Cable Incline                     49

Glen Canyon                                                    51

Mount Lowe Eight                                               53

Phantom Sea                                                    55

Alpine Division                                                57

Nature and Art                                                 59

Magnificent Views                                              61

Circular Bridge                                                65

Alpine Club House, Hanging of the Crane                        69

Benefits of Mountain Climbing                                  79

Health Gained in the Mountains                                 83

Mountain Canyon in the Winter                                  85

Flora of Mount Lowe                                            88

Coast Islands from Mount Lowe                                  93

Looking from Mount Lowe Over the Valley                        94

From Alpine Snow to Semi-Tropical Sea                          96

From the Mountains to the Sea                                 102

Dawn on Mount Lowe                                            104

Tri-Crested Summit of Mount Lowe                              106

A Forest of Pines                                             106

The Name                                                      107

How to See Mount Lowe                                         110

Summer on Mount Lowe                                          112

The Summing Up                                                114

The Beauties of Mount Lowe                                    115

Other Picturesque Trips on the Pacific Electric Railway       116

Long Beach                                                    116

Whittier                                                      119

San Gabriel                                                   120

Monrovia and Baldwin's Ranch                                  123

[Illustration: Alpine Scenery in Winter on Shoulders of Mount Lowe.]




Scenic Mount Lowe

Man's Love for Mountains.

In all ages of the world man has been a lover of mountains. Ruskin
says, "Mountains are the beginning and the end of all natural scenery,"
hence it is natural that man should love them and that they should
exercise great and potent influence upon him.

Carmel, Ararat, Hor, Horeb, Nebo, Sinai, Olivet, Hermon, Calvary, and
others have left--through the literature of the Bible--ineffaceable
impressions upon the highest civilizations of the world. All oriental
literature abounds in references to mountains, and men were incited to
lives of majesty, power, and purity by contemplation of them.

Every student of Japanese literature knows the influence Fuji Yama has
had upon the destinies of that thoughtful nation. Life in the mountains
of Afghanistan, Beloochistan and Northern India transformed the calm,
meditative, pastoral Hindoos into active, impulsive, warlike peoples,
whose movements resemble somewhat the fierce storms that play upon
their mountain summits or the wild winds that whirl down their

[Illustration: Robert T. Lincoln and Other Distinguished Visitors in
the Snow near Echo Mountain, Mount Lowe Railway.]

The mountain traditions of Europe would fill many large volumes, and
the folk-lore of the peasantry, as to how they came by their names,
makes most fascinating reading.

Who is there that cannot discern--what Sir Walter Scott so forcibly
presents--the influence upon the national character of the Scots and
the Swiss exercised by the rugged, bold and snow-crowned mountains of
their native lands? And the proverbial philosophy of both these peoples
contains many coins with a mountain superscription.

There is scarcely a poet of any age or clime whose soul since Homer
made Olympus the home of the gods and Parnassus the seat of poesy, has
not thankfully accepted the uplift of mountain influence.

Of nearly all the true, pure, heroic souls of history one could
exclaim: "He made him friends of mountains," and we read with thrilling
delight the thoughts inspired by mountains in Homer, Virgil, Dante,
Goethe, Schiller, Moliere, Fenelon, Bourdaloue, Massillon, Wordsworth,
Browning, Agassiz, Winchell, Clarence King, LeConte and others.

[Illustration: White Chariot Ascending from Rubio Canyon.]

On Sinai's rugged brow it was, amid heaven's awful thunders, God showed
Himself to Moses, and, through him to mankind, in the two tables of the
law. On Hor's solitary peak He condescended to place the priestly Aaron
in his tomb. On Carmel, His servant, the dauntless Elijah called for
fire, and God responded with the devouring element from heaven. On
Ararat, above the drowned world, the family that was to re-people the
earth, started after their long confinement in their floating home. On
Pisgah, Moses stood to survey the promised land. On Hermon Christ's
transfiguration took place. On Hattin He proclaimed the beatitudes. On
Calvary He was crucified, and on Olivet He ascended.

While the exigencies of business and commerce have made it necessary
for the large majority of people to dwell on level plains or on the
shores of the ocean, the greatest peoples and the nations which have
longest maintained their independence have been those which inhabited
mountainous sections, and breathed the pure air of the higher
altitudes. The purest patriotism, the highest intellectual attainments,
the greatest love of family, and the most perfect physical development
have been found among people who were inspired by the grandeur of
mountain scenery. The clinging faith and stern patriotism of the
Hebrews were the result of their love of the mountains of Palestine;
the love of the Greeks for the mountains on which they lived gave them
the intellectual and physical vigor which enabled them to roll back the
Persian hosts; the sunny mountains of Italy were an inspiration to the
Romans which enabled them to rule the world, and the heroism of the
Swiss in preserving their national autonomy in spite of all Europe, is
the most illustrious example of what has been the history of all
mountaineers. Mountains are the barriers which have preserved nations
from destruction, and national borders generally run parallel with
mountain ranges.

[Illustration: Looking Through Open Door of Alpine Tavern, Mount

Distinguished Testimony.

As a specimen of many such testimonials which have been publicly given
in regard to the popularity of the Mount Lowe Railway, I append
herewith portions of an admirable letter written by the Hon. W. C.
Patterson, late President of Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce, to its
membership. The date is September 27, 1895. He said: "In the interest
of my health and for the sake of most exquisite recuperation and
enjoyment, I have made thus far thirty-nine visits to Echo Mountain,
and several trips to the summit of Mount Lowe. I have also passed three
or four times over the matchless five miles' extension which is called
the 'Alpine Division,' and which extends to Mount Lowe Springs, where
is situated Alpine tavern, an altitude of 5,000 feet above sea level.

      "The Mount Lowe Railway, which enables one to penetrate the
      very heart of the Sierras with entire ease and comfort, has
      no counterpart in the world, either to the originality of
      its conception, the solution of what has been heretofore
      considered impossible engineering problems, or the
      indescribable picturesqueness of the ever-changing scenery
      through which it passes.

      "Any one who makes a single visit becomes full of
      enthusiasm, but mine has grown cumulative to such an extent
      that language seems utterly inadequate. As I have witnessed
      the results of Professor Lowe's great genius, enterprise,
      and perseverence, and have studied his personality, I am
      more and more impressed with the belief that he is an unique
      character, and one of the great men of this progressive

[Illustration: Professor Lowe Addressing his Guests on the Suspended
Boulder, Rubio Canyon.]

      "It is a matter of intense surprise to me, and almost
      disgust, that so few of our own people right here in sight
      of our beautiful Sierra Madre, have availed themselves of
      the opportunities which he has opened for studying their
      more than Alpine beauties, their inexhaustible and intensely
      interesting geological and botanical resources, to say
      nothing of the benefits to be derived from the delicious
      mountain air, freighted as it is with sweet odors and
      buoyant exhilaration.

      "These mountains are not, as many suppose, barren and bare.
      Vegetation extends to the very summit, more than 6,000 feet
      above the sea level, and the flora which abounds is a
      surprise, both as to its beauty and variety. The Alpine
      extension passes and repasses through delightful and
      romantic oak groves, and through forests of stalwart pines.
      Prof. Lowe's discovery of the existence of a quiet, steady,
      clear atmosphere suggested to him the idea of establishing
      in these mountains scientific institutions, especially
      astronomical and meteorological. The former science has
      already been installed in the splendid observatory, which is
      presided over by a distinguished astronomer, who nightly
      delivers free lectures illustrated by glimpses of the
      heavenly wonders through the great telescope. This
      observatory has already achieved a world-wide reputation,
      and from the superior conditions of the atmosphere in which
      it is placed, numerous discoveries have already been made,
      while other similar institutions have made no progress. It
      is said that for astronomical purposes, similar atmospheric
      conditions can scarcely anywhere else be found. These
      mountain peaks ascend almost abruptly from the ocean level,
      and in the great valleys adjacent the fogs and mists settle,
      leaving the air clear and transparent. The cool ocean
      breezes modify the effect of the sun's rays during the day
      and reverse the currents at night, whereby the atmosphere
      is, as it were, drawn from the desert over the higher
      ranges--nearly twelve thousand feet in height--having such
      cooling effects that the waves and tremors so annoying to
      astronomers in other localities are entirely absent.

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: Ready for the Ascent to Echo Mountain.]

      "There exists in the minds of Eastern people an impression
      that Southern California is a hot climate, especially in
      summer. This impression arises from a variety of causes.
      Many assume that oranges grow only in hot countries. This is
      not necessarily true. They will not mature in cold climates,
      but they will thrive luxuriantly in mild climates. It is
      said that in Florida, where the summer climate is hot and
      sultry, oranges mature in six months, whereas a year is
      required in California. Another cause for the existence of a
      false impression as to our summer lies in the fact that
      heretofore some of our large hotels, which were owned by
      Eastern capitalists who control Eastern summer resorts
      closed their doors about the first of May, which is really
      just the period when our climate becomes the most
      delightful. Even when our inland districts become somewhat
      warm there is always delicious relief to be found at the
      seashore or in the mountains. It would seem strange to those
      not familiar with the fact that the mildest and most equable
      portion of our climate is found at altitudes of three to
      four thousand feet. Those who visited Echo Mountain during
      the last winter may remember that delicate flowers
      flourished, while at an elevation of a thousand or fifteen
      hundred feet above snow fell to a depth of several inches
      and remained in the bright sunshine but dry atmosphere
      several days without melting. This has made possible an
      interesting experience, by which within thirty minutes after
      leaving the beautiful flowers of Echo Mountain and the
      valley below one can enjoy a sleigh ride among the pines in
      the vicinity of 'ye Alpine tavern.' The mountain atmosphere
      during the full six months is so mild and dry and pure that
      one could sleep in the open air without the least danger of
      taking cold.

[Illustration: Hon. R. T. Lincoln, Marshall Field, and Other
Distinguished Visitors in White Chariot of Great Cable Incline, Mount

       *       *       *       *       *

      "I can guarantee that every person who goes over the Mount
      Lowe Railway from end to end will want to repeat the
      experiment and will urge his friends to go. The enterprise
      should have the hearty co-operation of all people interested
      in literary and scientific progress.

      "The mountains of Switzerland, especially since the advent
      of mountain railroads, have made that country, with all its
      climatic drawbacks, a Mecca for tourists from all over the
      world. When the beauties and attractions of the Sierra Madre
      are fully made known why may not a large percentage of this
      vast tourist travel be attracted to our very midst?"

[Illustration: PROF. T. S. C. LOWE.]

[Illustration: Group of Alders near Mount Lowe Springs.]

The Mount Lowe Railway.

A few years since, a man whose boyhood was passed among the mountains
of New England, conceived the idea that by the use of modern electrical
appliances the summits of the highest peaks of the Sierra Madre could
be reached and an easy route opened up whereby people could scale these
heights with the same ease they ride over a modern railway. The result
was the construction of the Mount Lowe Railway, the most scenic
railroad on earth. The originator and constructor was Professor T. S.
C. Lowe. He constantly kept in view the artistic effects as well as the
engineering conditions, and the result has been a road of easy grades
and one where the most artistic pictures of scenery are brought into

[Illustration: WINTER AT MOUNT LOWE SPRINGS. Thirty Minutes from
Perpetual Flowers at Echo Mountain House.]

[Illustration: Scene near Maple Springs, Mount Lowe Railway.]

Origin of the Mount Lowe Railway.

The genesis of the Mount Lowe Railway is not far away. In 1889 some
preliminary surveys that had been made for the purpose of scaling the
Sierra Madre were submitted to Professor T. S. C. Lowe. He became
interested in the matter and decided to make a personal examination of
the ground, and shortly afterwards placed his corps of engineers in the
field for the purpose of making a thorough survey in order to determine
whether the work was practicable. After the engineers had been at work
upon another route for many months Professor Lowe cut the Gordian knot
by suggesting the now world-renowned Great Cable Incline. It was like a
revelation to the engineers, and from this on the engineering problems
were of easy solution.

[Illustration: In Glen Canyon, near Echo Mountain, Mount Lowe.]

The route starts from Altadena, a beautiful residence section about
four miles north of Pasadena, from which point an electric railway runs
over the high mesa and up Rubio canyon, a distance of 2-1/2 miles. The
lower portion of this distance gives some very beautiful views of
valley and ocean, and as the route enters the canyon it winds in and
out following the devious course of the sparkling little stream which
leaps over the rocks, now crossing smaller canyons on substantial
bridges, and then cutting through solid rock, making a picturesque road
which, were it not overshadowed by the greater glories of the upper
portion, would of itself be famous. At Rubio canyon the foot of the
Great Cable Incline is reached at an altitude of 2,200 feet above the

[Illustration: Rubio Pavilion and Concert Hall, Rubio Canyon, Mount

Rubio Canyon.

Rubio Canyon above the pavilion is one of the most picturesque and
beautiful spots to be found in the mountains. Immediately on entering
the visitor is charmed and surprised with the richness of the verdure,
the trees, shrubs, ferns and flowers that greet his eye. From the
valley the mountains seemed barren,--now we see that they are fairly
covered with mountain mahogany, lilac, holly, and other chaparral,
while in the deeper canyons, pines, spruces, bays, maples, sycamores
and live oaks flourish in large numbers. Ferns, mosses and trailing
vines in profusion and variety cover the rocks, while

     'The witching tangle of the maiden-hair,
     The sweet grace of the gold and silver ferns,
     The nodding coffee fern with beauty rare'

seek shelter in hidden nooks, whose perfect solitude is only penetrated
by the lover and the enthusiast.

Among the objects of interest in Rubio Canyon are Suspended Boulder,
fern glens, moss grottos, peculiar stone formations, grand chasms,
Ribbon Rock, Thalehaha, and nine other exquisitely beautiful
waterfalls. Just below the Suspended Boulder is Mirror Lake. It extends
across the complete width of the canyon, which somewhat narrows at this
point, and reaches for quite a distance, being bridged by the plank
walk leading to the Grand Chasm and Thalehaha Falls. The exquisite
reflections of the trees, shrubs and towering rocks, together with the
electric lights and Japanese lanterns on festive nights, give to Mirror
Lake an indescribable charm.

[Illustration: Great Cable Incline, Mount Lowe.]

The Great Cable Incline.

The distinguishing feature of the road below the summit of Echo
Mountain is the Great Cable Incline, run by a novel application of
electric and water power.

This marvelous piece of railroad engineering has called forth the
unstinted praise of many eminent engineers. The scientific press has
been unanimous in expatiating upon its unique features and designates
it "the greatest mountain railway enterprise in existence," and says
"the engineering problems have been solved in a manner to challenge

This Incline extends from Rubio Pavilion 2,200 feet above the sea, to
the summit of Echo Mountain, 3,500 feet in altitude. It is upward of
3,000 feet in length, and makes a direct ascent of about 1,400 feet.
The grade begins at 60 per cent., after passing the turnout it is 62
per cent for quite a distance, then it makes two "buckles," one to 58
per cent., and on nearing the summit to 48 per cent. Sixty-two per
cent. means a rise of 62 feet in going forward 100 feet, which gives an
idea of its great steepness.

The cars are permanently attached to an endless cable, and are so
balanced that in ascending and descending they pass each other at an
automatic turnout, exactly midway on the Incline, and are so arranged
as to keep passengers always on the level, regardless of the steep
grades of the Incline.

The cable is of the finest steel and was thoroughly tested to a strain
of ONE HUNDRED TONS, and, as under any circumstances the loaded cars
will never exceed FIVE TONS, its absolute safety is at once apparent.

[Illustration: "White Chariot" nearing Summit of Echo Mountain. On
Least Grade of Great Cable Incline.]

The view, in ascending, is indescribably grand. The motion is smooth
and easy as if soaring to the clouds on wings.

At first, the mountains composing the Rubio Amphitheater appear to rise
with the car, and yet the view enlarges every moment. Passing through
Granite Gorge,--an immense cut in the mountain slope, where all the
workmen who could possibly be crowded upon the mass were engaged for
eight long months before a single tie could be laid--over the
Macpherson Trestle--an immense bridge, 200 feet long and 100 feet
higher at one end than the other--the San Gabriel Valley unfolds its
incomparable charms, and, as the elevation increases, the view expands
until, on reaching the verandas of Echo Mountain Chalét, the whole
scene is presented in its full glory.

The grade of this Incline was such that burros had to carry cement and
water for building the walls and buttresses, before the track could be
laid, and, as there were many points where not even burros could climb
in safety, men carried the required materials on their shoulders.

Echo Mountain.

Seen from below, Echo Mountain appears as a mere abutment from the main
range, but when one stands on its summit the name "Mountain" is then
seen to be singularly appropriate, for it is dissevered, except by a
small "saddle," from the main range by Glen and Echo Canyons--canyons
half a mile and more in width and over a thousand feet in depth. Hence
the location on this mountain, midway between the San Gabriel Valley
and Mount Lowe, with towering mountains and abysmal canyons, affords a
variety of scenery almost inconceivable to the dweller in the valley.

[Illustration: Echo Mountain Chalet and White Chariot on Great Cable

This outlook, 3,500 feet above the level of the sea, with mountains,
foothills, ever verdant valleys, cities, towns, villages, old missions,
sea beach, shipping, islands and ocean in full view, has no equal.

Thirty miles of bridle roads radiate from Echo Mountain, on which
guests may roam or ride into romantic canyons, dells and nooks
innumerable with freedom and safety.

These foot paths and bridle roads and the scenery they reach are not
equalled at any resort on the surface of the globe. An entire week can
easily be spent in rambles without visiting the same place twice, and
then only a small portion of the delightful mountain and canyon
recesses will have been explored.

Echo Mountain House.

On the crest of Echo Mountain Professor Lowe placed two hotels, one
"The Chalet," which still remains, the other, "Echo Mountain House,"
which was destroyed by fire three years ago. It was a superbly equipped
hotel, of magnificent proportions and unequalled outlook, where many
visitors from all parts of the world congregated. It is the intention
of the Pacific Electric Railway to rebuild Echo Mountain House in the
near future. This decision will be gratifying to those who have
experienced the delights of this beautiful hotel in the past. The exact
location of the new hotel is not yet decided.

[Illustration: LOWE OBSERVATORY, With Hotel and Buildings on Echo
Mountain, Mount Lowe Railway, after a Snow Fall.]

Lowe Observatory.

This Observatory is located on a slope above Echo Mountain. A walk has
been constructed from the Hotel to the Observatory, so that all who
desire to visit it may do so without inconvenience or fatigue.

It is presided over by Professor Edgar Larkin. The instrument with
which he is now searching the heavens is a 16-inch refractor, made in
his best days, by Alvan Clark, the late lamented lens-maker of
Cambridge, Mass., and it is, according to the maker's testimony, the
best glass he ever made.

Professor Larkin thus writes of the advantages of the Lowe Observatory
for astronomical work:

      "The site of this institution is ideal, both for telescopic
      and spectroscopic purposes. So great is the purity of the
      air that both these instruments can be used in the most
      accurate measurement. The definition of the stars and disks
      of the planets is perfect, and the entire year presents but
      few nights during which a micrometer cannot be used. Stellar
      spectra are clear cut and steady, and in the solar spectrum
      the Fraunhofer lines are perfectly defined, the thin lines,
      in diameter equal to that of a spider's web, can be seen
      without difficulty. Few observatories in the world have a
      clearer sky, or a location presenting less trouble from air
      currents and changes. To illustrate the clearness of the
      atmosphere, it will be merely necessary to state that the
      trapezium in the Great Nebula in Orion shows distinctly at
      the exact instant of rising over the mountain peaks! The
      writer has often observed the trapezium--the entire seven
      stars--when only one minute had elapsed since rising over
      the rocks forming the summit of the mountains! This will be
      appreciated by all who have long used a telescope in any of
      the Eastern observatories. The moon is white--not yellow,
      and the floors of the craters, the cones, whence escaped
      molten lava ages ago, and the delicate tracery of shadows
      are revealed with marvellous accuracy of detail.

      [Illustration: The 16 inch Equatorial Telescope of the Lowe
      Observatory, Echo Mountain.]

      "Nebulæ can be seen here that are invisible in many other
      instruments of equal or greater aperture. Double stars are
      separated at this observatory, that would seem to be beyond
      the power of a sixteen-inch glass. Closely packed clusters
      are dispersed into separate diamonds, rubies and sapphires.
      But no tongue or pen can describe the glories of the Milky
      Way. Imagine jet black velvet spread over with heaps,
      streamers and spirals, made up of every possible color of
      precious gem--with diamonds in excess. These stars all
      separately invisible to the unaided eye, are seen as
      individual points in the telescope. They glitter with
      supernal light, and scintillate in every hue of the
      spectrum. They are piled up by the million on the
      inconceivable blackness of infinite space, for never-ending
      space is black in the telescope. The Zodiacal light in
      autumnal evenings and mornings is seen extending almost to
      the zenith--a cone of pearly light.

Professor Larkin.

      "Edgar Luciene Larkin was born in a log cabin, twelve miles
      north of Ottawa, La Salle County, Illinois, on April 5th,

      "But why? To this moment it has been an inscrutable mystery
      why Nature allowed this event to occur. It happened on a
      farm. My parents were poor enough to furnish a topic to a
      writer of modern socialism, such as 'unequal distribution of
      wealth'; 'submerged nine-tenths'; 'why billionaires exist'
      and the like. The log hut was in a beautiful place, near a
      stream of clear, cool water--Indian Creek. It runs along
      through the north, from west to east, bending to the south,
      and discharges into the Illinois River at Ottawa. This
      stream is lined for miles with a magnificent forest, called
      the 'woods.' Stately trees of oak, ash, elm, maple, walnut
      and many other species waved in the winds, and in the
      autumn, colors beyond description fell on the leaves and
      they were all splashed with careless gold and scarlet. And
      the 'sear and yellow leaf' abounded. And 'Oh! those days in
      the woods!'--Nature days--whose memory now is enough to
      awaken the highest impulse in the mind. The neighbors did
      not find fault with my folks, and they were considered to be
      respectable, by even the nearest--not more than a mile away.
      Father was just ordinary, and the friends said that I 'took
      after him.' He farmed and mother merely kept house--the hut.
      These were pioneer days; a few cabins broke the distant line
      of horizon, to the west and south. As far as could be seen,
      even from the writer's perch in the top of a tall tree,
      there was one vast expanse of tall, green grass waving in
      the wind. But how beautiful! Climbing trees to see the
      'waves roll' was ideal. The wind tumbled and tossed the
      grass into rolling waves, miles in length. The scene was
      wonderful; it was that of a prairie in Illinois. Just now,
      as we write, looking out of the window, the waves of the
      Pacific Ocean are seen thirty miles away. They are not more
      impressive than those majestic waves in the grass. For the
      writer became as expert in tree-climbing as his pre-historic
      and remote ancestors in South American forests. My
      mother--still living--is a woman of mental force and
      ability, of high morality and nobility of mind; but she
      could not bring me up right, that is, to be a farmer. The
      writer was sent to plow corn, and from subsequent events he
      now believes that he actually did; the weeds escaped
      entirely. I was transferred to the dairy department, and had
      sole charge of the cows. These loving creatures and the
      writer became fast friends. One was 'ring streaked,' and
      another 'spotted and speckled.' Old 'brindle' led the
      procession down to the creek for water, with the writer in
      the midst. And 'the lowing herds wound slowly o'er the lea,'
      in those happy childhood and bucolic days. A mighty event
      took place; grandfather put up a frame house, with boards
      outside, real boards of pine, brought to Ottawa on the new
      canal; and the boards were painted white!

[Illustration: PROF. EDGAR L. LARKIN, Director of the Lowe

      "My father died when I was eleven years of age, so mother
      and I went to live in the new white house, with the
      grandparents. But there was no schoolhouse; the settlers
      were poor, but finally one was erected. It was not red, in
      fact never had a coat of paint; and was about the size of a
      large room in a modern dwelling. Teachers were scarce and
      books likewise. Another event happened; a retired German
      physician came to 'farm it.' He had a library. I borrowed
      all the books he had in English, but the great volumes in
      German were as hieroglyphics. School opened in September,
      1858, and the onerous, difficult and discouraging job of
      'educating' the writer began.

      "Then the greatest event of all occurred, on an auspicious
      day, October 5th, 1858, and I was asleep. Grandmother came
      in haste at about 10 P. M., aroused me and said, 'Oh! Edgar,
      come and see the comet.' When behold! the mighty comet of
      Donati seemed to span the heavens, and looked as though it
      came out of the black forests and extended to the zenith.
      Mortal eye has not seen a more wonderful display.

      "Its blazing nucleus was then passing the star Arcturus, and
      the scene is now in the writer's mind as though it were but
      yesterday. Cuts of the comet at the time of passing Arcturus
      may be seen in works on astronomy. Next day the writer
      decided to begin the study of astronomy. But how without
      books? The teacher had a copy of Burritt's Geography of the
      Heavens and Atlas. The writer asked her to sell it; she
      would for $1.00, although it cost her more. But the dollar!
      Grandfather was perpetually paying for land. Dollars were
      exceedingly scarce. Grandmother had one gold dollar; this
      she gave me and the book was purchased. A surveyor living
      near had a four-inch lens. He placed it in a square tube of
      wood, and with one eyepiece made up a telescope, which he
      loaned to me. So the study of astronomy was commenced with
      this outfit in my eleventh year. The first work was to trace
      the path of the comet among the stars on the atlas. The
      pencil mark is on the atlas yet, with 1858 scrawled in
      boyish figures. Five terms of school of three months each
      were attended, when arrangements were made for me to go to a
      high school and later, an academy in Ottawa. Then came
      disaster, weakness of the eyes. School, reading, the
      telescope, all had to go; and with heavy heart the little
      telescope was returned to the good old surveyor. Grandfather
      died, the dear old home was broken up; we moved to a nearby
      village, Earlville, Ill. In my fourteenth year my eyesight
      became strong enough to permit two terms in a graded school
      of six months each.

      "This 'finished' the work of education, for events were such
      that I never entered school again. In 1879 the writer built
      a private observatory in New Windsor, Ill., and on January
      1st, 1880, a fine six-inch Clark equatorial, with circles,
      was set upon its pier. In the spring of 1888, Knox College,
      in Galesburg, Ill., erected a good observatory on the
      campus. All the instruments were removed from New Windsor
      and placed in the new dome. The writer was director of the
      Knox Observatory from Aug. 1st, 1888, to Aug. 1st, 1895.

      "Upon coming to this fairy land of the earth, Southern
      California, I was appointed director of this mountain
      observatory, the Lowe, taking charge on Aug. 11th, 1900.
      Everything happened in August. Here is an elegant Clark
      sixteen-inch telescope, with spectroscope and tele-camera,
      with accessories. The writer has not startled the world by
      capital discoveries in astronomy, but has confined his work
      to writing for journals and magazines. Enough has been
      published to make several volumes. Only one series has been
      printed in book form--'Radiant Energy.' Study of science has
      been continuous, save for one deflection of six years, which
      were devoted with intense interest to Hindoo, Iranian,
      Persian, Egyptian and Greek philosophy and Esoteric
      mysteries, the occult.

      "The writer is a life Fellow of the American Association for
      the Advancement of Science, of the Southern California
      Academy of Science, and of the Astronomical Society of the
      Pacific, but has not surprised any of these societies by the
      discovery of a law greater than gravity, nor what matter is,
      nor electricity, nor how grass grows, or why we are here on
      earth. None of the mean things that the writer has performed
      are inserted on account of the inordinate length of this

The Spectroscope.

About 1600 A. D., Kepler placed a prism in a beam of sunlight and saw
what had not before been seen--so far as known--the first solar
spectrum. A century later Newton darkened a room, admitted solar rays
through a round aperture in a shutter, passed them through a prism and
obtained a clearer spectrum than Kepler's. Little was thought of these
things, however, until, when in 1802, Wollaston made a slit in a
shutter, projected a spectrum, in which he was surprised to see a few
dark lines. In 1814 Fraunhofer made a spectrum in the same way, but
happened to look at it with a telescope. This act changed the course of
the science of optics for all time; it was the origin of Spectrum
Analysis, one of the chief products of the human mind, one of the
corner-stones upon which rests the structure of modern science. Men's
minds immediately began to expand, and a period of mental activity set
in, the like of which was never known before. Fraunhofer saw hundreds
of lines, but the great spectroscope in the Mount Lowe Observatory
shows thousands, in width from that of a spider-web to one-tenth of a
millimeter. They are the most valuable set of lines known. They enable
finite man to tell what the earth, sun and stars, meteors, comets and
nebulæ are composed of. The prism of Newton and Fraunhofer is now
displaced by the diffraction grating--ruled by Rowland 14,438 lines to
the inch. These striæ break up light into its elements, reflect them to
the eye, and in solar and stellar light reveal the absorption lines.
The spectroscope of the Lowe Observatory made by that accomplished
optician Brashear is one of the finest.

[Illustration: White Chariot nearing the Chalet on Echo Mountain].

[Illustration: Night Scene, with Searchlight, Echo Mountain House,
Mount Lowe.]

Great World's Fair Searchlight.

The Great World's Fair Searchlight, which is now so well known from its
operation on Echo Mountain, first became famous at the World's Fair,
Chicago, where it excited great interest, and surpassed all other
exhibits in its line. After the Fair, it was taken to San Francisco and
exhibited at the Mid-Winter Fair, where it delighted thousands from the
Bonet electric tower, 264 feet high. When the Mid-Winter Fair was over,
Professor Lowe purchased it and removed it to Echo Mountain, where it
rests at an altitude of 3,500 feet above sea level. Until this great
searchlight was established in its present location its powers could
not be brought out on account of its location so near the general level
of the surrounding country. Here, however, it is so located that its
rays can be seen for 150 miles on the ocean, and the most distant
mountain peaks can be made visible by its penetrating rays. The beam of
light is so powerful that a newspaper can be read for a distance of
thirty-five miles, and its full sweep illuminates the peaks of
mountains which are hundreds of miles apart.

It is of 3,000,000 candle power, and stands on a wooden base, built in
octagon form, which has a diameter of about eight feet. The searchlight
itself stands about eleven feet high, and its total weight is 6,000
lbs., yet it is so perfectly mounted and balanced that a child can move
it in any direction.

[Illustration: Machinery for Operating the Great Cable Incline, Mount
Lowe Railway.]

The reflecting lens is three and a quarter inches thick at the edges
and only one-sixteenth of an inch at the center, and weighs about 800
lbs. The metal ring in which the lens is mounted weighs 750 lbs., the
total weight of lens, ring and cover being about 1,600 lbs. This great
mirror is mounted at one end of the big drum, the outer end of which is
furnished with a door, consisting of a narrow metal rim, in which are
fixed a number of plate glass strips five-sixteenths of an inch thick
and six inches wide. The value of this great searchlight in
meteorological work has already been demonstrated on a small scale.
When there is moisture in the atmosphere, and varying wind-currents,
the light turned upwards discovers the directions in which the wind is
conveying the clouds, and aids in revealing the conditions that cause
these variations.

Operating Machinery of the Great Cable Incline.

Like many other things in connection with the Mount Lowe Railway, the
machinery is unique and unlike anything ever before constructed.

The power was originally furnished by water. For the first nine months
the Great Cable Incline was operated by water power and electric power
generated by two monster gas engines. Now the power is supplied from
the Pasadena plant of the Pacific Electric Railway. It is transmitted
by large copper conductors to the Echo Mountain power house, supplying
current to the 100 horsepower electric motor, which makes 800
revolutions per minute. Then by a series of gears the revolutions are
reduced from 800 to 17 per minute, which is the speed at which the
massive grip-sheave turns. The grip-sheave consists of a tremendously
heavy wheel, on which about 70 automatic steel jaws are affixed. As the
wheel revolves, these jaws close and grip the endless cable, to which
the cars are permanently attached, and thus are they raised or lowered
as occasion requires. By this method there is practically no wear
whatever to the cable. It is not strained and chafed by the constant
operation of gripping as on the street railway cars, where the inertia
of trains of cars of many tons weight has to be overcome by the
gripping of the ever-moving cable.

[Illustration: Leontine Falls, near Echo Mountain, Mount Lowe Railway.]

Every safety device and appliance of known utility that could be used
has been placed upon the machinery and thoroughly tested, so that the
unanimous verdict of the many eminent engineers who have scientifically
examined in detail the machinery and its working is a deserved tribute
to the foresight of Professor Lowe. That verdict is, that it is the
safest railroad ever constructed; and the possibility of accident is
reduced to a lower minimum than on any cable, electric or steam system
in the world.

Glen Canyon.

This is one of the many quiet and secret ferny nooks reached in a few
minutes from Echo Mountain House. Bridle roads and foot-paths reach
these secluded spots, and there in ferny dells, surrounded by towering
trees and majestic rocks, charmed by the babbling brooks, the rustling
of the leaves and the sweet singing of thousands of birds, one may
while away the hours in delicious restfulness.

[Illustration: AMONG THE GIANT FERNS. Glen Canyon, near Echo Mountain,
Mount Lowe Railway.]

Mount Lowe Eight.

To ride on well constructed bridle roads up mountain slopes, winding in
and out on diversified paths, through and by bowers of fragrant trees,
shrubs and flowers, looking _up_ through towering pines to majestic
cliffs and ponderous rocks, looking _down_ into the depths of vast
canyons, where deer find shady coverts, and looking _out_ upon scenes
of perfect beauty and sublimity--these things fill the body with vigor
and buoyant enthusiasm, and the mind with lasting pictures of
increasing interest.

[Illustration: On the Bridle Roads of the Mount Lowe "8."]

[Illustration: The Phantom Sea in the Sierra Madre.]

Realizing this Professor Lowe early had constructed more than thirty
miles of wide and easy-graded bridle roads radiating from Alpine Tavern
to all the higher peaks and summits of the range. The most important
sections of these roads are known as the "Mount Lowe Eight," for, in
making the complete ride to the summit of Mount Lowe from Echo Mountain
and return, the figure "8" is described, the rider crossing his own
path in one place only, and nowhere else riding twice on the same road.

The Phantom Sea As Seen from Echo Mountain and Mount Lowe.

One of the most exquisitely beautiful sights ever witnessed is when a
low fog covers the San Gabriel Valley. This fog never rises above a
level of about 2,700 to 3,000 feet, and when one is on Echo Mountain,
3,500 feet in elevation, the upper surface of this fog is spread out
"like a phantom sea" below. The "cities of the plain" are covered with
this snow-white or creamy pall. Underneath is partial gloom and
dampness. Above, the sun shines upon a silent sea, whose waves are
tossing and lifting, swaying and waving, until finally--generally
between 8.30 and 9.30 in the morning--the heat, in dissipating the
glowing white ocean, builds fantastic and mysterious forms on its
surface, and draws them upwards to rapidly swallow them up and make
them disappear in its warm embrace. Such a sight stirs the soul to its
greatest depths, and suggests thoughts sublime and soul-uplifting.

[Illustration: Point Diablo, Mount Lowe Railway.]

The sea is made of the exhalations from the Pacific ocean and covers
the whole valley with its white, misty veil on certain mornings. It is
1,500 to 2,000 feet deep, and never reaches the summit of Echo
Mountain. As seen from the great hotel it looks like a vast expanse of
hummocky ice, as is often noticed in winter off the Atlantic Coast.

The Alpine Division.

The guest who has reached Echo Mountain should not conclude that he has
seen the chief beauties which align the route of the Mount Lowe
Railway. Not so! What he has seen are but the adornments which are
festooned around the vestibule of the greater glories of the Alpine
division which carries him into the very heart of the Sierra Madre
range, and amid the solitude which reigns among the higher peaks and
spurs. This division extends from Echo Mountain to Ye Alpine tavern, a
distance of five miles. The road is a substantially built electric
road, with grades but slightly exceeding seven per cent., on which the
cars are easily propelled by electricity. Indorsing all that has been
said of the beauties of Rubio, of the Great Cable Incline, and of Echo
Mountain, yet these afford but comparatively limited ranges of vision,
sometimes obscured by the fogs and smoke of the valley. On the Alpine
division, however, one is above these impediments to sight, and the
range of vision extends until lost on the distant horizon. The air is
clear and transparent, so that mountain peaks, distant islands and
far-away valleys seem to draw near and pass in review like a silent
procession of giants.

[Illustration: The Mount Lowe Railway and Valley from Mount Lowe.]

Nature and Art.

In the construction of the railroad Professor Lowe exhibited the same
skill and energy that were so manifest in the lower portions of the
route. The grade of the road has been made so low that one imagines he
is riding on a level surface rather than climbing the steep and rugged
sides of the Sierras. This grade enables the cars to be propelled with
a great saving of power, and at whatever speed necessary to give
passengers the finest views of the incomparable scenery which aligns
the route. With that fine artistic taste which the originator of the
enterprise has shown in every detail of the construction, he has built
the track just where the best views of mountain, valley and sea are to
be found, so that the road, instead of disfiguring the landscape, as do
so many of the old-fashioned cog-wheel roads, adds to the beauty and
charm of the scenery and gives to the particular section of the Sierra
Madre where the "City on the Mountain" sits, an added charm.

The road climbs up the sides of the mountain in graceful curves, and as
one is being carried along he often wonders where an opening to the
apparently impassable walls of granite which hem in the way can be
found. At one point of view, by looking up and down the steep sides of
the mountain, nine different tracks can be seen rising one above the
other. One of the unique features of construction is a bridge, which
spans a canyon, and rounds a mountain peak, thus forming a complete
circle. This division of the road is the only railroad in the world in
which, throughout its entire length, the ties are laid upon a shelf of
solid granite. And so carefully has the work of construction been
done that since its completion no accident has occurred to any of the
thousands of people who have ridden over it. Its solidity ensures
safety and exempts it from the dangers which environ railroads in the

[Illustration: Jason Brown on Mount Lowe Bridle Road, Castle Canyon.]

[Illustration: View from Artists' Point, Head of Grand Canyon.]

Magnificent Views.

But the grand views which are revealed along the route are the
principal charms of the Alpine division. Until Echo Mountain House is
reached the view is somewhat hemmed in by the nearness of the mountain
sides, in Rubio Canyon and even when going up the Great Cable Incline.
From Echo Mountain, however, a wider expanse of view is obtained, and
as the higher altitudes are reached the scenery becomes bolder and the
range of vision enlarged until it seems as though the whole of
Southern California was spread out beneath. Distant Catalina Island and
the more remote Channel Islands, off Santa Barbara, have drawn near in
the clear atmosphere, and the numerous cities which bestud the plain
appear close by, while the higher peaks of the Sierras stand out
against the sky with startling vividness. The vast depths of Millard
and Grand Canyons serrate the mountains as if the "plowshares of God"
had upturned a path for winter torrents through the solid granite.
Nature blends her softest and most bewitching vistas with the stern
grandeur which pervades the mountain heights and the broad expanse of
ocean which ultimately unites with the distant horizon.

[Illustration: In Glen Canyon, Five Minutes from Echo Mountain House.]

As the road finally swings around into Grand Canyon, the character of
the scenery changes and the vistas of valley, plain and ocean are shut
out. All hint of the habitation of man is gone, and one realizes a
sense of the solitude of Nature. The vastness of surrounding mountains
and the great canyons impresses itself on the mind and one feels that
the only thing which connects him with the abode of man is the frail
wire which pulsates with that mysterious power which is doing so much
of man's drudgery.

The terminus of the track, at "Ye Alpine Tavern," is 5,000 feet above
sea level, at the head of Grand Canyon, and from that point the summit
of Mount Lowe can be seen, towering eleven hundred feet above. A short
and enjoyable walk brings one to Inspiration Point, from which the
Observatory and buildings on Echo Mountain are seen as the play houses
of children, so far are they away; and the orange orchards and
vineyards and green grain fields in the valley resemble the
variegated patchwork upon the old-time bed-quilts. To those who from
here desire to ascend to the summit of Mount Lowe, a wide and safe
bridle road offers the opportunity of an exhilarating ride up the
mountain side, from whence a greater variety of views are obtained of
distant mountain ranges, extensive plains and broad expanses of sea.

[Illustration: Approaching Grand Circular Bridge, From Head of Millard
Canyon, Mount Lowe Railway.]

People go many miles, pay large railroad fares and spend much time to
visit Watkins Glen and Ausable Chasm, New York. At Mount Lowe the
scenery is an hundred-fold more grand, the canyons deeper than the
highest peaks of hills which are dignified with the name of mountains
in New York, and yet the expense of reaching Mount Lowe is but a
fraction of what is charged there; no charge is made for guides; the
time necessary to make the trip is much less, and the hotel
accommodations very much superior.

The Circular Bridge.

Bridge builders, as a rule, build upon a tangent, and are very
particular to have the floor upon a dead level. The reason that these
two conditions are thought necessary is to avoid too much strain upon
the structure, and in building railroads they are generally looked upon
as absolutely necessary. Where the conditions are such as to admit of
such construction it is undoubtedly the part of wisdom to follow the
beaten path, but occasionally such a course would either largely
increase the expense, or, as in the construction of the Mount Lowe
Railway, stop further progress. Such a dilemma was thrice presented in
the construction of the Mount Lowe Railway. First in the numerous
bridges along the lower portion of the route, in Rubio Canyon; again in
building the Great Cable Incline, and lastly on the Alpine division,
where it became necessary to build a circular bridge in order to get a
proper grade.

[Illustration: GENERAL VIEW OF THE MOUNT LOWE RAILWAY. From a painting
by Gardner Symons.]

In the second instance the bridges were built on the same incline as
the balance of the grade, in one instance the upper end being one
hundred feet higher than the lower in a length of 200 feet. It was,
however, in the construction of the circular bridge that the most
radical departure from the usual rules of bridge construction was
taken. At that point it was necessary for the track to swing around a
spur of the mountain, making a circle about 400 feet, with a diameter
of 150 feet across and on one side a deep canyon had to be bridged.
This was accomplished by the construction of a circular bridge built on
a grade of 4-1/2 per cent. Many engineers would have declared that a
car could not be run over such a structure, but it was so carefully and
scientifically built that cars are run over it with as much ease and
safety as over any other portion of the road. Stoppages are often made
upon it and the start is again made without any strain upon either the
bridge or car.

On other portions of the Alpine divisions loops are made around the
heads of great canyons, and the track turns upon itself in such a maze
that in one place nine different tracks can be counted on the mountain
side, each successively reaching a higher altitude, all the bridges
along the line conforming to the curvings and twistings of the track.

[Illustration: Near Mount Lowe Springs and Alpine Tavern. March, 1896.
Three Quarters of an Hour from Orange Blossoms and Roses.]

Alpine Club House. "Hanging of the Crane."

Harrison Gray Otis, the able veteran editor of the Los Angeles Daily
_Times_, describes the opening of the mountain club house, called "Ye
Alpine Tavern," on December 14, 1895, in the following manner:

      "As was reported in yesterday's _Times_, the recently
      completed extension of the Mount Lowe Railway to the new
      'Alpine Tavern'--five miles beyond the Echo Mountain House,
      and 5,000 feet above sea level--was made the occasion of an
      interesting celebration last Saturday. A hundred visitors or
      more from Los Angeles, Pasadena and abroad accepted the
      hospitality of the indomitable builder, and made the trip
      over the new line. It was a happy journey, a fortuitous
      occasion. The day was all that is implied in the term, 'a
      December day in Southern California.' A glorious southern
      sun shone straight down, flooding the scene with warmth and
      light. The air was limpid, thin, bright and bracing, and the
      spirits of the party rose as the electric chariot bore them
      on toward the summit, under the inspiration of a ride, the
      unique character of which can be found nowhere else on the

      "The car goes swinging along the precipitous flank of the
      rugged mountain and the line is marked by astonishing
      sinuosities, startling curves, bold headlines and sharp
      angled rock piles. The road appeared dangerous to the more
      nervous and timid, but, in fact, it is as safe as any
      railway line running on the level, for the road bed, track
      and bridges are built in a most thorough and substantial
      manner, and were not made to 'fall down.'

[Illustration: GLIMPSES OF MOUNT LOWE RAILWAY. Grand Circular Bridge at
Upper Right Hand Corner.]

      "The picturesque route is through majestic forests, growing
      heavier and more luxuriant with the ascent, and the line
      penetrates deeper into the Sierra, where the snowfall of
      winter furnishes increased moisture, and the shade of the
      close set trees shields the ground and gives the fertile
      soil a chance to feed the abundant tree and plant life of
      this high altitude.

      "The whole journey is alluring and picturesque, not to say
      thrilling. On one side of the road rises the towering uplift
      of the bulky mountain, its slopes bright in verdure and
      covered with heavy timber, masses of displaced rock and
      fallen trees. On the other sink immeasurable canyons, filled
      with a dense forest growth, thickets of chapparal and beds
      of luxuriant ferns.

      "Far away, seaward, spreads the eye-filling panorama of the
      lower levels. Foothill slopes, big and little valleys,
      spreading plains, deep-cut arroyos, clearly defined
      watercourses, cultivated fields and gardens, sweet cottages
      and opulent homes--all are clear to the vision of the
      beholder from this summit height. Pasadena, Los Angeles and
      their environs are seen; the blue and restless ocean lies
      beyond, its ceaseless breakers ever lashing its unyielding
      shore into whitest foam.

      "The delighted travelers brought up at the Alpine Tavern,
      not merely because it is a hostelry affording 'entertainment
      for man and beast,' but because the railway line runs, as
      yet, no further than that point. The hotel, built at the
      point known as Mount Lowe Springs, is constructed something
      after the style of a Swiss chalet, and is as attractive as
      it is unique. It is set into the very ribs of the mountain,
      being built to suit the location rather than after any
      stereotyped plan of the average modern architect, who would
      ruthlessly fell the finest forests--God's first temples--for
      the sake of building a wall 'just so.'

[Illustration: Carriage Road from Alpine Tavern to Inspiration Point.]

      "In the forest all about the 'tavern' are giant pines and
      immense oak trees, their branches touching the very roof of
      the building. These trees are interspersed with maple,
      sycamore, manzanita, bay, etc., and almost every variety of
      fern is to be found in the adjacent canyons.

      "In addition to the main dining hall there is a billiard
      hall and some twenty sleeping rooms, neatly finished in
      natural woods, and each heated by means of hot water
      circulation. These rooms are designed especially for
      visitors during the winter season, when it is desirable to
      be housed in a single building, but for summer months
      surrounding the Tavern are numerous tent cottages which
      allow all who desire to sleep practically out of doors.
      These tents are large and commodious, and are equipped with
      comfortable beds and all the essentials of home. Many prefer
      them to the rooms of the Tavern.

[Illustration: A Woodland Dell, Mount Lowe Springs.]

      "The 'tavern' is of an entirely original design, the
      construction being a combination of blocks of granite and
      Oregon pine, finished in the natural color of the wood. The
      building is forty by eighty feet, and the main floor is used
      for office and dining room purposes, in which one hundred
      people can easily be seated. In this dining room there are
      five cheerful open fireplaces of unique construction; the
      main one, in which swings the great crane, measures twelve
      feet from side to side, and seven feet high, with stone
      blocks for seats in each corner. Over the mantle is the
      hospitable inscription 'YE ORNAMENT OF A HOUSE IS YE GUEST
      WHO DOTH FREQUENT IT.' On One side is a large old-fashioned
      brick oven, and on the other side an opening forming a
      buffet of most unique construction, where 'mystery' and
      other fluids are kept for the people of Pasadena.

[Illustration: Observation Car near Granite Gate, Grand Canyon, Mount
Lowe Railway.]

      "It is estimated that more granite has been displaced and
      rolled down the canyon in building this last five miles of
      road than would be sufficient to construct a city the size
      of Pasadena. The road-bed is literally 'rock-ribbed,' if not
      'eternal as the sun.'

      "The completion of the next section of the road is expected
      to be accomplished at some time in the future. Already two
      sections--that is, the one to Echo Mountain and the one
      beyond--equal, it is claimed, two and a half times the
      length of the famous Mount Washington road.

      "While the improvements were going on at Echo Mountain the
      road beyond was being steadily built, and, as before stated,
      is now completed to these springs, 5,000 feet above the sea,
      and five miles beyond Echo Mountain. The redwood ties, which
      are of the standard size, lie on solid rock the whole
      distance, making this the only road in the world, the
      builder proudly claims, which for so long a distance is
      built on a shelf of granite.

      "Beyond this point nearly a mile of road has been graded,
      which will be used as a carriage road for the present, and
      for sleighing when snow comes. Gentle saddle animals are
      provided here, at nominal expense, for those desiring to
      ride, and many do so in order to look off from Inspiration
      Point, at the summit of the first range, from whence can be
      seen Echo Mountain, and the whole magnificent panorama below
      and beyond.

[Illustration: Saddle Horses at Alpine Tavern, Ready for the Trip to
the Summit of Mount Lowe.]

      "Returning to the 'tavern' the interested company further
      inspected the quarters, and presently the ceremony of
      'hanging the crane' was simply carried out by the chef and
      assistants, uniformed in white aprons, and 'bossed' by the
      whole party. The ceremony was quickly over, and was greeted
      with applause and expressions of delight all along the line.

[Illustration: Mount Lowe, Looking North from Summit of First Range.]

      "Then followed the dinner, which was a toothsome repast,
      elegantly served. Prof. and Mrs. Lowe occupied the head of
      the table, and the guests were seated at will about the
      board. The repast was discussed with joy and satisfaction,
      and thereafter Col. G. Wiley Wells, Col. H. G. Otis, Judge
      McKinley and Dr. Conger of Pasadena, each responded to
      calls, and made little talks for the entertainment of the

      "Each of the speakers paid a handsome tribute to Prof. Lowe
      and his successful work, giving him full and high credit for
      his genius, perseverance, indomitable will, large faith and
      astonishing mastery of details. They dwelt upon the
      importance of the enterprise to Southern California, and
      predicted great results to flow from it in the years to
      come. The boldness and energy of the builder in undertaking,
      single-handed and alone, an enterprise vast enough to engage
      the efforts of a large corporation were dwelt upon by more
      than one of the speakers, and these references elicited the
      plaudits of the appreciative company.

      "Prof. Lowe responded, modestly telling of his work as a
      practical modern man of business, who had simply undertaken
      the very feasible task of building a mountain railway to fit
      a mountain as he had found it--a work which required a very
      different sort of talent from that employed by the great
      artist to whom reference had been made in one of the toasts.
      The possibilities for sleighing, and the unequaled views
      from Inspiration Point were touched upon--a striking view
      that may be had from a small level spot near the tavern, not
      much bigger than an army tent would cover. It is certainly a
      view such as can be had from no other spot on the wide

      "The host's modest and candid speech was listened to with
      keen interest, and at its close the speaker was warmly

      "This ended the high revelry, and then the revelers took
      the train for the lower regions, but later got to their
      respective homes all right, after a most enjoyable day, long
      to be remembered."

The Benefits of Mountain Climbing.

The higher one climbs in the mountains the less becomes the atmospheric
pressure upon him, and lungs, heart and nerves all feel the reduction
of the pressure. All experience new sensations of freedom and vigor,
activity and exuberance, felt only on the levels in times of excitement
or stimulation. The lungs expand and the breathing is more profound;
the heart thereupon beats fuller and more vigorously, while the subtle
oxygen, no longer stealing into the body in a half-afraid,
surreptitious way, but taking fuller possession at each more vigorous
heart-beat, healthfully stimulates the nerves and the brain. Renewed
activity is the result, with the vim, _verve_, joy and happiness that
are natural concomitants of healthful physical conditions.

So mentally and spiritually. The higher we go, the less atmospheric
pressure is there upon us.

We think easier and to better advantage, and our hearts respond more
readily to the grand, the good, the beautiful and the sublime. The
subtlety of the mental and spiritual stimulus that comes into the life
when we are above the fogs and the clouds, breathing deeply a pure
atmosphere, is one of its chief charms. We feel the stimulus or respond
to it and wonder how and whence it came. A quickened mental and
spiritual life is the result. Thoughts whose existence were never
before dreamed of come and go with rapidity, and we experience all
the thrilling joy of mental and spiritual discovery.

[Illustration: On Grade of Mount Lowe Railway, near Alpine Tavern,
Thirty Minutes from Flowers at Echo Mountain House.]

Not only are spiritual, mental and physical power gained on the
mountains, but in them is contained a marvelously extended store of
material for the building up of the artistic and æsthetic sides of men.
Here artist, poet, orator may gain a stock of unforgettable memories
and provide themselves with gallery after gallery of perfect pictures;
pictures of beauty, sublimity, majesty and grandeur.

Just think for a moment of the canvases depicting mountains. Some of
the greatest artists of the world have built up their reputations
through their mountain pictures. Three of our greatest artists owe
their success to mountain pictures. Bierstadt, Moran and Hill are alike
mountain lovers and worshippers.

Then who can overlook the place mountains have in the poetry of all
peoples, of all times? And to merely recount the exquisite and strong,
the beautiful and the sublime passages in literature, of which
mountains are the theme, would fill many hundreds of volumes. Their
heights and their unattainableness, and yet the luring of us onward and
upward. The snow-capped peaks, the emblems of eternal purity. The
dangerous precipices. The shady recesses. The thrilling canyons. The
cooling fountains. The secret stores of waters they contain. The
minerals they hide. The towering rocks looking down upon all below. The
trees they nourish. The flowers they cherish. The valleys they make and
sustain. The clouds they arrest and make contributors to the common
good. The shields they are to the winds.

[Illustration: OUR ARTIST AMONG THE BOUNDERS. Bridle Road through
Castle Canyon, near Echo Mountain House, Mount Lowe.]

Health Gained in the Mountains.

Physicians are now recognizing more than ever before the great value of
conditions that exist in the mountains for the restoration of invalids
to health. Hence year by year thousands of people leave the stern
winters of the East, with their fierce snow-storms, blizzards, winds
and tornadoes, to enjoy the equable, delicious climate of our
sun-kissed land of the South, and nowhere can these benign influences
be enjoyed as well as on the various elevations of the Mount Lowe
Railway. Those who desire a moderate altitude find it at Echo Mountain,
3,500 feet above the sea, while to those who need the rarer atmosphere
of the more elevated points, Alpine Tavern, among the pines, is an
ideal spot. It is no mere formal statement that the hotels at these two
points are first-class in every respect. In all essentials no modern
hotel in the greatest cities of the continent surpasses them. The
health conditions, too, are simply perfect. Pure water from
uncontaminated sources,--springs that bubble up through the
disintegrated granite and give a naturally-filtered water free from all
mineral and organic matter; pure air, changing twice a day in gently
flowing currents, which alternate from ocean and desert, both ideal
purifiers of the atmosphere; balsamic and health-giving odors from
pines, firs, spruces and other mountainous trees and plants; absolute
freedom from all malarial or other injurious and noxious influences;
the quietude of gentle nature; these are some of the conditions of
distinct therapeutic value which minister to the physical and mental
well-being of those who dwell in these favored spots.

[Illustration: Winter Scene, Thirty Minutes from Perpetual Roses at
Echo Mountain House. Now Reached by Alpine Division, Mount Lowe

A Mountain Canyon in Winter.

Mountain canyons are always beautiful. No matter how rugged the scenery
is, Dame Nature is such a finished artist that she paints the most huge
rocks, or the most gnarled and twisted trees, so that all the human
painter can do in order to become famous is to properly interpret and
place on canvas the touches which nature has imprinted on the
landscape. At best man is only a copyist; all his "creations" and
"interpretations" are suggested to him by some manifestation of the
Great Creator painted or impressed on some canvas hung on the mountain
sides, or in the valley, or on the ever restless waves of the sea. It
is in the solitude of the mountains where the finest inspirations for
the artists are to be found. Here he is alone with nature. Here the
grandest exhibitions of the titanic power of the Creator are manifest,
toned and modified by the beautiful tints of flowers and ferns.

In this climate the summer is a season of rest for all natural
vegetation, except in the mountains. Only where man has reversed the
course of the seasons do we find growth and development. But even then
the canyons possess wonderful beauty, although the songs of their
brooks are sung in minor tones. As compared with the brown and parched
valleys their cool retreats are refreshing. In winter, however, they
possess their greatest charm. Then nature is busily at work. The rock
gives out bounteous streams of water, which leap down their mossy
sides, singing as they go joyful anthems and imparting to every kind of
vegetation the moisture which gives them renewed life. Where the
landscape has been brown and bare comes the rich green of a new life,
the very rocks putting on a richer coloring by absorbing their quota of
the vivifying fluid.

[Illustration: Alpine Tavern in Winter.]

Many people climb to the summits in order to get views of the canyons,
imagining that from such heights can be found the best vistas of their
caverns. They thereby get a beautiful glimpse of the dark recesses
below; but one must see the canyons from their depths in order to fully
grasp their beauty and grandeur. We now get close to nature, and she
talks to us in a language which all can interpret, and what glimpses of
the outer world we see are toned and made mellow by the setting of
rocks and forests which are blended by the variegated colors of
brilliant green and the "sere and yellow leaf" of those trees which
cannot overcome their hereditary nature and sleep while all other
vegetation is bursting into new life.

Professor Lowe, having the eye of a true artist, laid out bridle paths,
built stairways and walks, and, without disturbing nature, made access
to the canyons along the route of the Mount Lowe Railway easy and
pleasant, either on foot or on saddle animals. One can spend days and
weeks with pleasure and profit in exploring these recesses, with the
advantage of having a home at night with all the conveniences of urban
life, at no greater cost than when stopping at hotels in the valley.
Visitors should therefore come prepared to prolong their stay until
they have leisurely roamed over all the paths and explored the canyons
which constitute the itinerary of the Mount Lowe Railway, and not be
satisfied with a cursory glance at the wealth of scenery which is so
easy of access, especially when its hotel accommodations are superior
to all others in Southern California and at no greater cost than in the

The Flora of Mount Lowe.

The Sierra Madre are not composed of dry, barren earth heaps, but, true
to their name, are Mother Mountains, fostering and protecting life's
children. A refuge for all, for primitive man of past times, who was
forced to depend upon them for water and food, and for the civilized
man of to-day, seeking health and enjoyment in their oxygenated
atmosphere and restful solitudes.

[Illustration: Acorns Grown Upon the Summit of Mount Lowe. 6100 Feet
Above Sea Level.]

For the lowest as well as the highest of organizations the mountains
are a grateful retreat. The simple amoeba, whose existence is
undoubtedly the oldest of all times, finds living here impossible, for
in water it must live and move and in desert wastes it must perish.

The stately yuccas--the candlesticks of our Lord--their white fragrant
blossoms borne on the straight stalks, at a distance looking like so
many white stakes set by surveyors, grow only on the mountains and
foothills; while down in the deep canyon streams the lowest of plants,
the algæ, abound.

The nearer one approaches to the mountains the more abundant are the
signs of life, the more prolific is nature, the more do the flowers
multiply; until when the foothills are reached one sees them to be
literally covered with blossoms.

The ferns are already at the mountains, while the flowering plants all
seem to be on their way thither, as emigrants from the dry valley,
leaving but few by the roadside, stragglers loitering on the mountain
march, or perhaps not stragglers, but simply doubters, hesitating
whether to still proceed to where the water ever flows, or whether to
wait and see what further wonders man can accomplish with his

From the fertile, semi-tropical fields of Altadena, aglow with golden
poppies, stretching up in the mountains to the rocky summit of Mount
Lowe, where saxifrage and penstemons, ferns and nightshade harmoniously
cleave to the rocks and strive to gain a living in summer time
against altitude and dryness only to be buried in snow in the window
months, the line of march extends.

[Illustration: Garden of the Gods, showing Two Sections, with portion
of Circular Bridge, Mount Lowe.]

Shrubs and flowers in profusion vie with each other as to which will
brighten the landscape the more. The California lilac of the lower
altitudes, lays downs its masses of purple blue color, the manzanita
thickets of the heights send out their heavy white fragrant blossoms, a
pleasing contrast to their rich red gnarled stems, while the brilliant
gilias, the showy mariposa lilies, the various primroses, the mocking
monkey face flowers--the mimuli, make the trails and bridle roads
resplendent. The spotted tiger lilies look down upon the water flowing
in the canyons, the woolly blue-curls--the trichostema, relieves the
dull browns of the chapparral and the baby blue eyes, the nemophila,
hugs closely the mountain sides.

The abundant phacelia whitlavia nods in its blue bells over the bank's
edge, while its relative, the white phacelia, creeps over the rocks
higher up. Downy yellow violets--wild pansies the children call them,
so much larger are they than the Eastern violets--grow on the rich
moist earth by the mountain springs.

Over the scrub oaks the yellow and white honeysuckle winds, while the
clematis drapes other thickets with its graceful festoons of white
blossoms in spring, leaving for the fall the funny seed balls still
clinging to the vine.

Later in the year the wild fuchias and wild astors come unexpectedly
forth when valley flowers have long since given up blooming, keeping up
the reputation of the mountains for having flowers at all times and at
all seasons.

[Illustration: Observation Car on Grand Circular Bridge en route for
Alpine Tavern.]

The Coast Islands From Mount Lowe.

The coast line of the Pacific ocean, as seen from Mount Lowe is
peculiarly fine. On a clear day many islands can be seen from the
summit, where the eye can scan a distance of nearly three hundred miles
along the shore. Some of the islands rise from the surface of the water
only a few hundred feet, their surfaces being high table lands, which
can be cultivated; others are mountains, the highest peaks towering
3,000 feet high, while others are apparently the rocky tops of
submerged mountains.

[Illustration: Log Cabin, Mount Lowe Springs.]

The position of Mount Lowe is such that with one sweep of the eye they
will pass in review on a clear day (which in this region is the normal
condition of the atmosphere), giving a panorama of ocean, island,
mountain and canyon scenery which cannot be equaled on the globe.

Looking from Mount Lowe Over the Valley.

The San Gabriel Valley and the mesa lands lying between the Mission
Hills and the ocean are choice bits of God's creation, as are also the
interior valleys which radiate from them.

This stretch of fertile land, all of which can be seen from some point
of view on Mount Lowe, already contains two hundred and fifty thousand
people, and yet only a small portion of the soil is cultivated. It is
capable of sustaining a population of several million from the products
of the soil alone, not to say anything of its superior location for
manufacturing and commerce. Probably before the new century is half a
decade old more than a million people will have their homes here.

The portion of this region lying immediately at the foot of Mount Lowe
is the most thickly populated section of Southern California. Directly
underneath, within a few miles of its base, is the beautiful city of
Pasadena, with its sixteen thousand people, and just beyond the Mission
Hills, the metropolis of the southwest, Los Angeles, is located, with
one hundred and forty thousand population. These two cities show a
greater annual per cent. of development than can be found in any
other portion of the United States. The upper or western portion of the
San Gabriel valley is cut up into fruit farms, which look from the
mountains like well kept gardens, and the whole scene is one of busy
activity. These cities, towns, orchards and farms give added charms to
the landscape.

[Illustration: Swimming in the Pacific Ocean at Long Beach on New
Year's Day.]

Through a good opera glass or a field glass the celebrated avenues of
Baldwin's Ranch, the Mission San Gabriel, the Convent at Ramona, a
portion of the Industrial School at Whittier, many of the public
buildings of Los Angeles, and other objects of interest may be seen. A
score or more of cities, towns and villages are clearly discernible,
and the course of their streets well outlined. The Puente Hills, the
Mission Hills, the San Rafael Hills and their surrounding mountain
heights, with the peaks of Santiago, San Antonio, San Bernardino, San
Gorgonio, San Jacinto, Santa Monica, Santa Inez and San Fernando are
all in sight, and beyond these fertile valleys and highlands can be
seen the peaceful waters of the Pacific sparkling and glimmering in the
warm sunshine, studded here and there with some of the most beautiful
islands in the world, the headlands of Santa Catalina standing out in a
clear day like the bold cliffs of Gibraltar, and San Clemente, St.
Nicholas, Santa Rosa, San Miguel, Ancapa, and Santa Barbara bedecking
the ocean like the isles of the Grecian Archipelago.

From Alpine Snow to Semi-Tropical Sea.

On several New Year's Days I have made this wonderful and memorable
trip. The climatic conditions are so peculiar that within three
hours' time of enjoying a swim in the warm waters of the Pacific one
may be snowballing his friends, sleighriding or tobogganing on the
heights of Mount Lowe. The accompanying pictures give some faint idea
of the unrivaled charm of this unique trip. Sometimes I have started at
the snow in the mountains, but on New Year's Day, 1897, I first took a
swim in the Pacific Ocean at Long Beach. This, "the Atlantic City of
the West," is twenty-one miles southeast of Los Angeles, and the beach
is one of the finest in the world. It has a gentle slope, is of firm
sand, and is equally as good for horseback riding and driving as for
bathing. Its great length of solid sand is what suggested the name,
hence it is an ideal spot for those who love the ocean and the sands.
Here, with several friends, I reveled in the surf and beyond, and then
returned to the hotel with an appetite vigorous and healthy. The
cravings of hunger satiated, the train whirled me back towards the
mountains. Now the electric cars of the Pacific Electric Railway, over
a broad-gauge track, surpass even the steam cars in their speed and
easiness of motion. The green lawns of Long Beach were left behind,
that the eye might feast upon the rich green of the alfalfa fields and
sugar beet ranches. The old Dominguez Ranch was passed, the mesa upon
which the last fight with the Mexicans took place before California was
secured to the United States, and the interesting gardens of the
industrious "heathen Chinee." Never for a moment were we out of sight
of the majestic Sierra Madre Range, while hoary San Antonio (so
inappropriately and disrespectfully called "Old Baldy," by the
uncouth and irreverent), lifted his sentinel head in watchfulness over
the ever-verdant and glorious San Gabriel Valley. To the right and
somewhat to the rear was the cloud banner mountain of Southern
California, Mt. Santiago, while further away to the east were the giant
peaks of San Bernardino, San Gorgonio and San Jacinto.

[Illustration: At the Pasadena Tournament of Roses, New Year's Day.]

On reaching Los Angeles change was made to the Pasadena cars and a
thirty minutes' ride conveyed me to the flower-embowered streets and
avenues of Pasadena, where a score of thousands of citizens and
visitors were assembled to enjoy the annual Tournament of Roses. This
great mid-winter festival fully illustrates the climatic felicities of
this God-blessed region. It is a midsummer fête, where, generally,
flowers are lavishly expended in a wealth of floral decorations that to
an eastern mind seems incredible. Floats, carriages, tally-hos,
bicycles, horses and burros, decorated with choicest flowers, pass in
procession through the streets and avenues, cheered by enthusiastic
visitors. After reveling in the scene, the electric cars whirled
myself, a solitary unit among several hundreds of people, to the
heights of Echo Mountain and Alpine Tavern. Here, taking horse, and
accompanied by a distinguished medical professor of the University of
Minnesota, we were soon on the north slopes of Mount Lowe, where scores
of patches of snow were seen. In the mid-winter air we rode without any
inconvenience from cold, even light overcoats being unnecessary.
Returning to Echo Mountain, we enjoyed there a concert, and then the
doctor and I returned to Pasadena and Los Angeles, respectively, he
delighted with the novelty of his trip, and I satisfied that in no
other country in the world can such a three-hours' New Year's Day trip
be enjoyed than in our "Land of the Sun Down Sea."

[Illustration: Mr. Andrew McNally's Gardens on New Year's Day.]

[Illustration: In the Snow, overlooking Great Bear Canyon, Mount Lowe.]

From the Mountains to the Sea.

Although the trip so briefly described above was taken on New Years'
Day it must not be thought that it is a trip specially confined to that
day. Snow generally is to be found on the north slopes of Mount Lowe
from the end of November (after the first rains) until the middle of
May, so that thousands of visitors may enjoy this unique trip. Stopping
over night at Alpine Tavern, one may revel in the snow in the morning
and be photographed at an elevation of 5,000 feet, taking a sleigh-ride
to Inspiration Point, where he may stand or sit and look over the
blossom covered orange and lemon groves and flower gardens of Pasadena.
In three-quarters of an hour he may be driven in a carriage near those
very orchards and gardens, where snow has fallen but twice in eighteen
years. After dinner, a little over another hour's ride brings him to
the shore of the semi-tropical Pacific, and here he may enjoy a swim,
or, if he prefers, stand on the beach and watch a hundred people
sporting in the warm breakers. This is no unusual experience for the
delectation not only of those who are robust and strong, but even the
delicate may, with perfect impunity, make such a trip, and thus be
enabled to write to Eastern friends, shivering in the rigorous cold of
an Alpine winter, of the pleasures of this almost unbelievable three
hours' journey "from the mountains to the sea."

[Illustration: Outlook from one of the Bedroom Windows, Alpine Tavern,
Mount Lowe, March, 1896.]


     Looking southward to the sunlands,
       On the ocean's ebb and flow,
     Keeping watch o'er Echo Mountain,
       Dwells the spirit of Mount Lowe--
     In the glowing light of noonday,
       In the midnight calm and lone,
     Gazing outward from the summit
       Like a ruler from his throne.

     At his feet sits Pasadena,
       Framed with fields of fruit and grain
     Where the valley of San Gabriel
       Slopes in beauty to the main--
     Pasadena, decked with roses
       And with gems of gold and green,
     Resting on the landscape's forehead
       Like a crown upon a queen.

     And the "City of the Angels,"
       On her hills of bronze and gold,
     Stands amidst her groves of olives
       Like Jerusalem of old;
     With the purple Sierra Madres
       Smiling downward from the dawn,
     As Mount Hermon smiled on Zion,
       In the ages that are gone.

     West and south the blue Pacific,
       Hemmed with surf and fringed with spray,
     Bathes in floods of molten silver
       Headland, island, beach and bay;
     East and north the inland deserts,
       With their ever shifting sands--
     More unstable than the waters--
       Fade in distant mountain lands.

     Oh! that vision of the sunlands
       Where the skies are ever fair,
     And the Autumn woos the Winter
       With young rosebuds in her hair--
     Where the orange blooms forever
       And its leaf is never sere,
     And the mocking bird is singing
       To his mate the livelong year.

     It has haunted me in slumber,
       It has gleamed and throbbed again
     In my solitary musings,
       And in crowded throngs of men;
     Like a vanished revelation
       Floats the memory back to me
     Of that dawn upon the mountain
       'Twixt the desert and the sea.

                   JAMES G. CLARK.

[Illustration: Mount San Antonio, July 4, 1895, As Seen from Mount

Tri-Crested Summit of Mount Lowe.

No photograph or engraving can give any adequate conception of the
grand proportions of this majestic mountain. Seen from Los Angeles,
Pasadena, or the intermediate or surrounding points, its three crests
are clearly outlined against the sky, and it stands--the proud monarch
of the Sierra Madre range--centrally located and immediately
overlooking Pasadena and the head of the San Gabriel Valley. The bridle
road of the "Mount Lowe Eight" reaches its topmost crest, where there
are delightful mountain parks surrounded by live oaks, pines, firs,
sycamore and other trees.

The climatic and atmospheric advantages of this site for astronomical
and meteorological observations have been enthusiastically expatiated
upon by such scientific experts as President Eliot and Prof. Pickering
of Harvard, Profs. Barnard and Burnham of the Lick Observatory, Prof.
Kent of Chicago and many others. No more suitable site could be
selected in the whole domain of the American continent.

A Forest of Pines.

Along the Alpine division the cars pass through a forest of giant
pines, which covers all the northern slopes of the Sierra Madre. The
symmetrical branches weave a network against the background of blue
sky. These hardy trees grasp the granite rocks with their gnarled roots
and send a lacework of delicate fibres down the almost imperceptible
fissures for nourishment. The roots of pines and oaks have penetrated
the crevices to a depth of twelve to fifteen feet below the surface.

The Name.

The "naming" of Mount Lowe was quite an interesting ceremony. A large
party of distinguished citizens of Los Angeles and Pasadena had ridden
to the summit to see the progress made in the construction of the
railway and bridle roads, and an article written at the time by one
member of the party and published in an Eastern paper, the Anglaise
County (Ohio) _Republican_, says:

      "While in the enjoyment of the beauties and grandeur on this
      magnificent elevation more than 6,000 feet above the sea,
      some one inquired the name of this grand and lofty mountain,
      and then it was discovered that until this time this giant
      peak, the monarch of the Sierra Madre, was unnamed. One of
      the party suggested that whereas Professor T. S. C. Lowe,
      the great scientist, had first ridden to the top, had made
      the first trip to its lofty summit, was the first man to
      have planted the stars and stripes on its highest point, and
      was the first man to conceive the project of reaching its
      dizzy height with a railroad, and with courage and means to
      put such a project into execution, as was now being done, no
      more fit and appropriate name could be given this mountain
      than the name of 'Mount Lowe.' The motion to so name it was
      put and carried without a dissenting vote, and so, there
      above the clouds, it was named; and it will continue to be
      so named, when every one of the party present at the
      christening shall have been laid away in Mother Earth; and
      generations yet unborn shall trace its rugged outlines on
      their physical geographies and call it Mount Lowe."

[Illustration: "Gut Heil" Loop, Mount Lowe Railway, Looking from Winter
to Summer.]

[Illustration: Rounding Sunset Point, Mount Lowe Railway.]

How to see Mount Lowe.

There are various ways of "doing" Mount Lowe, but many people do not
give themselves time enough to fully enjoy the various attractions
which are to be found along the route. To people of leisure who desire
to thoroughly explore the canyons, enjoy the scenery in all its varied
manifestations, many days can be profitably and most pleasantly passed,
the varied scenery furnishing new enjoyment every day. Those whose time
is limited should come prepared to stop at least twenty-four hours. By
taking an early train Echo Mountain is reached in time to take a ride
over the Alpine division, and also to the summit of Mount Lowe, going
over the bridle roads from Alpine Tavern on saddle animals. The
afternoon can be profitably spent in exploring the many canyons of the
"Mount Lowe Eight," and viewing the sunset from Echo Mountain.

In the evening there can be witnessed the operation of the great
World's Fair Searchlight and telescopic views of the Moon and the
Planets, the great Milky-way, with its millions of Suns as large as our
own; Saturn, with its beautiful rings; Jupiter, with its grand belts
and Moons, and many other celestial objects.

The Lick Observatory at Mount Hamilton is reached by a tedious round
trip by stage of 54 miles without a chance to stop over night at the
observatory. After viewing the splendid telescopic views from Lowe
Observatory, all are invited to inspect the Incline machinery,
elsewhere described.

[Illustration: Observation Car, Descending from Grand Circular Bridge,
Mount Lowe.]

Summer on Mount Lowe.

The Sierra Madre Range has long been regarded as the most beautiful
location in which to escape from the heat of midsummer, or to make the
change of climate and scenery. Heretofore the seashore has been more
largely patronized on account of its ease of access, but many hundreds
of people have annually made pilgrimages to remote mountain resorts
because of the pure air and healthful surroundings there to be found.

The building of the Mount Lowe Railway into the very heart of the
mountains, and the erection of a modern hotel at Alpine has drawn the
attention of the people to these attractions, and the trend of travel
is now turned mountainward. Accommodations at the Tavern are not
surpassed by any on the Coast, and the liberal policy of the company to
those who desire to pass the summer here has so greatly reduced the
expense of living that it costs no more, railway fares included, than
at the seashore, and far less than by traveling long distances where
they can find nothing to compare with this resort.

Other mountain resorts are hard to attain, and the cost in money, time
and exertion places them beyond the reach of most people. But here, all
the enchanting pleasures of mountain life can be enjoyed with the same
ease and comfort and at no greater exertion than in the lowlands. For
those who are affected by the heat and dust of the valley it is an
ideal retreat, where complete exemption is to be had from all
complaints of the respiratory organs, especially asthma and hay fever.
The healthy and robust also find a variety of scenery and exercise
which made life glow with new vigor, attaining in a large degree all
needed rest and recuperation.

[Illustration: Around the Great Fire Place, at "Ye Alpine Tavern,"
Mount Lowe Springs.]

At Mount Lowe Springs the Alpine Tavern affords excellent
accommodations at an elevation of 5,000 feet above the sea, in the
giant pines which crown the summit of the first range, in which, also,
are opportunities for cottage and tent life in a region in which are
found the purest water, air which is perfectly adapted to delicate
lungs, and innumerable opportunities for the physical and intellectual
upbuilding of overtaxed minds and bodies. Here one can find rest and
sleep as they have never slept before, awaking refreshed with the tonic
of mountain air and sweet repose.

The Summing Up.

In closing the history of this remarkable enterprise, one thought
overshadows all others as we contemplate the author and his work.

It is the thought of the unsolved mysteries and sublimities and
beauties of these mountains--their inaccessibility, their
remoteness--had it not been for the persevering efforts of Prof. Lowe.
The dark curtain that had hung for ages over these craggy chasms, these
phenomenal canyons, these magnificent forests, these abysmal depths and
cloud piercing heights, these grottoes and glens, these solitary
habitations of bird and beast would still be drawn down but for his
enterprise and genius--thus shutting out a thousand delights to the
multitudes who have already looked upon them, and the myriads in the
coming century who are yet to rejoice in their glories.

The Beauties of Mount Lowe.

And no words of mine can express the charms, delights and beauties of
Mount Lowe better than the following apt and eloquent summary by Dr. J.
H. Barrows, of Chicago, the well-known President of the Parliament of
Religions at the World's Fair, and later, until his lamented death, the
honored President of Oberlin College, Ohio:

      "Thousands of trees grow out of its sold granite slopes;
      soft mountain breezes sing luring songs to the trees, the
      birds reply in a perfect ecstacy of liquid melody, the
      cataracts here and there dash and boom in accompaniment, and
      the rippling streams gossippingly carry the joyous news of
      the mountain heights and solitudes to the sweet mesas and
      plains below.

      "Four varieties of scenery are here combined: The beautiful
      San Gabriel Valley pastoral scene; the sublime ocean and
      pearl-like island views; the Alpine, Swiss, Norwegian and
      Himalayan effects, the circle of magnificent peaks from San
      Antonio to San Jacinto. Here we have Italy and Switzerland,
      both together! Snow and orange groves! Icicles and
      heliotrope! Sleigh-riding and rose gardens! Toboganning and
      humming birds! Skating and butterflies! Snowy mountains and
      pearly faced ocean, hazy islands and Eden's garden, all held
      in the bottom of God's hand, in the sight of one man's eyes,
      at one and the same moment!"

Other Picturesque Trips on the Pacific Electric Railway.

It was from Mount Lowe that the President of the Pacific Electric
Railway gained his first insight or "oversight" of the vast
possibilities of the region in and around the city of Los Angeles. When
it was suggested to him that the time was not far distant when the
whole of this region, from the mountains to the sea, would be threaded
over with electric railways, he was inclined to regard the suggestion
as chimerical. Time has made his the hand to perform the improbable.
Nowhere in the civilized world is such a suburban and interurban system
of electric railways to be found as radiates from the city of Los
Angeles to the cities, towns, seaside and mountain resorts of this
portion of Southern California. Visitors to the Mount Lowe Railway
should request the conductors to point out from the summit of Echo
Mountain the location of the following places.

Long Beach.

One of the most interesting trips out of Los Angeles is over the
Pacific Electric Railway to Long Beach. This enterprising city is
located twenty-one miles southeast of Los Angeles on the shores of the
Pacific Ocean. Its location is such that the natural advantages make it
the finest seaside resort in California. Taking the cars at the corner
of Sixth and Main Streets, the city of Los Angeles is soon behind us
and we are "spinning" along at sixty miles an hour over the smoothest
piece of broad-gauge track ever built, in cars that are large and

[Illustration: Long Beach, Reached by the Pacific Electric Railway.]

Many points of interest are passed en route--the extensive fields of
the Co-operative Colony, vegetable ranches with their picturesque
Mongolian workmen; through the prosperous town of Compton, which is
situated in the centre of a fertile district, where sugar beets, garden
truck, alfalfa and other products of the soil are raised; thence by the
old Dominguez Ranch, famous for the old Spanish bull fights held there,
also the old chapel where every Catholic bishop in this State has held
Divine services. The surrounding Mesa was the field of one of the
fights of the Mexican War.

The track is so straight that the poles, rails and wires converge and
the vanishing point is seen. The miles are slipping by at a rapid rate.
Over bridges, through fields, by shady nooks and deep pools we go. Rich
fields of alfalfa, with their valuable herds of cattle grazing in the
foreground, while in the distance San Antonio rearing its hoary head to
the skies, the sentinel of the tropical San Gabriel Valley, makes a
picture long to be remembered.

Passing over a most attractive lagoon and up a slight grade--the
steepest on the trip--we are nearing the city of Long Beach. Houses
with their beautiful lawns appear on every hand. Situated on the right
is the new high school building, an example of the Old Mission
architecture. Turning from American Avenue on to Ocean Boulevard, the
broad Pacific greets our unobstructed view. Hundreds are enjoying the
bracing air and delightful surf. The large building to the left is the
open air pavilion, in which concerts are given every day in the year,
dances being held tri-weekly. From here the broad pleasure pier runs
out through the roaring surf to the distance of eighteen hundred feet.
Fine fishing is had from this point of vantage, although by going out
in boats one may enjoy the pleasures of deep sea fishing. The world
renowned leaping Tuna and June fish are taken, some running as high as
200 pounds.

Among the attractions of the beach is the new $90,000 bath house.
Finely equipped in every respect, it is the best appointed and largest
bath house in the South. The warm plunge is 60×120 feet, graded to all
depths. Here one may enjoy still water bathing and acquire the art of
swimming more readily.

Up and down the beach for miles as far as the eye can see is the broad
expanse of hard, white sand--fourteen miles long at low tide--making
one of the finest drives imaginable, while off shore the white winged
yachts add an enchantment to the scene. The city in itself is very
attractive, the parks, public and private buildings, broad, well laid
out streets, show prosperity everywhere. Roses, calla lilies, violets,
carnations and other flowers are always in bloom. The Chautauqua
Assembly of the Pacific Coast is held here every summer, in a large
Tabernacle built for that purpose, and interesting lectures are given
by men of national repute.


The great Quaker poet has here his California namesake, a beautiful
town nestling on the lower slopes of the Puente Hills. Here Pio Pico,
the last Mexican Governor of California, built a home for his young
bride, and here, forty years later, three Quakers decided upon this as
the location for a town they had decided to establish. That was fifteen
years ago. Now it is a prosperous town of fully six thousand
inhabitants. In 1900 it had but one thousand five hundred and sixty
inhabitants; in 1902, three thousand; in 1903, six thousand. In the
same time bank deposits in the city have increased from $90,000 to
$275,000. In the first six months of 1903 more than $90,000 have been
invested in buildings; a $12,000 church, two $12,000 school buildings,
a $15,000 Odd Fellows Hall, besides scores of beautiful residences. A
fire department has been organized, a building erected and an ample
equipment secured. The city has been lighted with electricity and
25,000 feet of gas mains have been laid. New $25,000 high school
building, a city hall, and a dozen miles of cement sidewalks are not
far in the future.

A ride out to Whittier, therefore, cannot fail to be of interest to
traveler and stranger. In the Whittier oil fields great activity is
manifested, and on the journey one may see some of the finest of orange
orchards, walnut groves and field after field of monster "small"
fruits, such as blackberries, loganberries and the like. The old Pico
Mansion is one of the historic landmarks of the State that all should
see. Here also is located the State industrial school for both sexes.
Cars run regularly from Depot, Sixth and Main Streets, Los Angeles.

San Gabriel.

This historical landmark was founded by the Franciscan Fathers Padres
Benito Cambon and Angel Somero September 8, 1771, for the purpose of
converting the Indians in that territory to the Christian faith. The
Indians readily yielded to the teachings of the mission Fathers, at one
time there being 1,700 Indians under their supervision at this Mission.

[Illustration: Mission San Gabriel, Reached by the Pacific Electric

The old Mission structure is substantially built of brick, covered over
with adobe as plaster. The walls are from four to six feet thick.
To-day one can see it, as of old, standing as a monument to the men who
braved death and sacrificed their lives to bring religion to a heathen
people. It is one of the best preserved of all the old Missions, and
contains many interesting old frescoes, hand carved images and
paintings which were brought to this country from Spain.

The old bells, of which originally there were six (at present only
four), still chime forth the Angelus, and peal forth their summons to
mass. They were brought from Spain and traded for in hides, beeswax and

Among the numerous attractions is the old Mission Grape Vine, over 100
years old; the cactus hedge and the Campo Santo or old Spanish burial

The Pacific Electric Cars en route to this picturesque spot pass many
points of interest to the traveler. Majestic pepper trees line the way.

After leaving the junction of the Pasadena Short Line the Raymond Hotel
stands out in bold relief against Mount Lowe, many miles distant. The
cars then pass in front of the famous San Gabriel Winery, one of the
largest in the world. Visitors are allowed to sample freely of the rare
old vintages.

Thence the cars wend their way through the main street of the town of
Alhambra, which is noted for its fine villas and fruit products of all
kinds. Beautiful villas greet the eye on every hand, and the beauty of
the flowers is everywhere;--thence to San Gabriel, the home of the
oldest inhabitants of the San Gabriel Valley.

Monrovia and Baldwin's Ranch.

About sixteen years ago an enterprising citizen of Los Angeles, Mr. W.
N. Monroe, realizing the beauties and natural advantages of the
foothill country, developed water where the town of Monrovia now
stands, and laid the foundations of the enterprising city of that name.
It stands to-day a marvel of beauty; verdure surrounds you on every
hand. The agricultural possibilities that have laid dormant through the
ages have been brought to a reality, and this section is now considered
one of the richest sections of Southern California.

The new double-track broad-gauge electric line from Los Angeles to
Monrovia, eighteen miles long, passes through the famous San Gabriel
Valley, with the peaks of the Sierra Madre range, Mount Lowe 6,100;
Wilson's Peak, 6,700 feet, and San Antonio 10,000 feet, standing in
bold relief against the blue.

Starting from Los Angeles we go over the new Pasadena Short Line to
Monrovia Junction, where we turn to the east, the Short Line continuing
in a northerly direction to Pasadena. A grand view of the Raymond
Hotel, with its dark background of mountains, is to be had as we turn
east onto the "Orange Grove Route." This is through orange groves all
the way, one may say, for we are riding through all kinds of fruit
groves and orchards until Monrovia is reached. Here and there we see
stretches of pasture, dotted with live oak trees, with herds of cattle
grazing peacefully under their scraggly but picturesque branches.
Country roads guarded by tall eucalyptus and graceful pepper trees,
wineries and vineyards add to the scene. Passing through the L. J. Rose
and Chapman ranches we now enter the famous ranch of the West,

Arcadia is the station we stop at for Baldwin's ranch. Tallyhos meet
the cars, and the nominal price of 50 cents is charged for the drive
through the ranch. On this drive all points of interest are visited--the
house, winery, race track and stables.

Twenty-five years ago, Mr. E. J. Baldwin, better known as "Lucky"
Baldwin, took up land and secured ownership to the vast acreage, now
comprising 54,000 acres. It stands, actually a principality in itself,
the finest ranch in the West. Time and money have not been spared to
beautify the grounds and orchards. The Ranch House is situated in the
midst of an immense orange grove, surrounded with artificial lakes and
pools, majestic palms and drooping boughs of the weeping willows. Roses
are in profusion; giant cacti and stately pines show a contrast of
production. The scene challenges description. Nestling under this
canopy of beauty is the old Log Cabin, a relic of the early days, and
the first house occupied by Mr. Baldwin when the surrounding country
was claimed by the greatest land owner of all, the Desert.

[Illustration: The Lake at Baldwin's Ranch, Reached by the Pacific
Electric Railway.]

At the stables are to be seen the best thoroughbred horses in the West,
all with records for their fleetness. The Emperor of Norfolk, a most
knowing animal, won the Derby of '89, winning in one race $44,000. This
horse won in two years more than any other horse living, winning over
$200,000 for his owner.

Cars leave Sixth and Main streets every half hour.


For literature, descriptive of
.... the trips, write ....

General Passenger Department



[Illustration: (ad)]


$1.00 A DAY FOR $1.00




Ostrich Farm        }  _PARLOR_
San Gabriel Mission }    _CAR_
Baldwin's Ranch     }  _"POPPY"_


Los Angeles, 6th and Main, 9.30 A. M.


Arriving in Los Angeles, 1.55 P. M.

_Stopping at all points via_




       *       *       *       *       *

Transcriber's Notes

Page 55: Changed "covererd" to "covered."
  (Orig: The "cities of the plain" are covererd with this)

Page 63: Changed "sierrate" to "serrate."
  (Orig: depths of Millard and Grand Canyons sierrate the mountains)

Page 72: Changed "mazanita" to "manzanita," and removed duplicate "the."
  (Orig: maple, sycamore, mazanita ... in the the adjacent canyons.)

Page 77: Changed "Mounain" to "Mountain."
  (Orig: from whence can be seen Echo Mounain,)

Page 77: Changed "guest" to "guests."
  (Orig: and the guest were seated at will about the board.)

Page 89: Changed "montain" to "mountain."
  (Orig: stragglers loitering on the montain march,)

Page 98: Changed "surpasss" to "surpass."
  (Orig: surpasss even the steam cars in their speed)

Page 114: Changed "abyssmal" to "abysmal."
  (Orig: these abyssmal depths and cloud piercing heights,)

Page 122: Changed "Mision" to "Mission."
  (Orig: The old Mision structure is substantially built)

Retained spelling variations of chaparral, chapparal, and chapparral.

Standardized some hyphenated words.

Made minor punctuation corrections.

Moved some illustrations to paragraph breaks.

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