Placerville, California aka Hangtown
Winter of 1890
Twilight arrived early that evening. The storm abated, and despite occasional flurries, the moon shone down at intervals through a partly cloudy sky, lending an eerie translucence to the scene and casting curious shadows on the glimmering snow. The breathtaking beauty of the mountains once more overcame me. The magnificent ponderosa pines leaned and swayed precariously, each bow hanging heavy, laden with a mantel of white. The air was still and silent, with only the occasional pop of an overburdened limb disturbing the quiet as it echoed from the canyon beyond. I stood for a long time, shivering and staring awestruck across the snow-covered Sierras. I’ve never experienced air fresher, shadows deeper, or a scene so extraordinarily quiet and pristine. You’ll laugh and think I’m crazy, but it seemed as though I could almost hear the stars.