Famous John Muir Quotes about Nature, Mountains, and More!

By: Ashley Vitiello | Last Updated on March 6, 2024

John Muir is a Scottish-American naturalist that lived 1838-1914 and is known for being a forward-thinking author, environmental philosopher, explorer, conservationist, and so many other titles. If it weren’t for him, we probably wouldn’t have Yosemite National Park as we know it today, as well as several other national parks that he was involved in creating.  In these times, he’s most popular for his writings, which have become a personal guide into nature and the mountains for many people. 

Here we’ve assembled a list of our favorite John Muir quotes, which range from his musings on nature and the mountains to his thoughts on hiking and Yosemite in particular. 

john muir quotes about nature

John Muir Quotes About Nature

1. “When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world.”

2. “As long as I live, I’ll hear waterfalls and birds and winds sing. I’ll interpret the rocks, learn the language of flood, storm, and the avalanche. I’ll acquaint myself with the glaciers and wild gardens, and get as near the heart of the world as I can”.”

3. “The sun shines not on us but in us. The rivers flow not past, but through us. Thrilling, tingling, vibrating every fiber and cell of the substance of our bodies, making them glide and sing. The trees wave and the flowers bloom in our bodies as well as our souls, and every bird song, wind song, and tremendous storm song of the rocks in the heart of the mountains is our song, our very own, and sings our love.”

john muir quotes about nature

4. Earth hath no sorrows that earth cannot heal…for the earth as seen in the clean wilds of the mountains is about as divine as anything the heart of man can conceive!

5. “Keep close to Nature’s heart… and break clear away, once in a while, and climb a mountain or spend a week in the woods. Wash your spirit clean.”

6. “Beetles and butterflies are sometimes restricted to small areas. Each mountain in a range, and even the different zones of a mountain, may have its own peculiar species. But the house-fly seems to be everywhere. I wonder if any island in mid-ocean is flyless.”

John Muir Quotes About Trees

7. “Between every two pines is a doorway to a new world.”

john muir quotes about trees

8. “Allow nature’s peace to flow through you as sunshine flows into trees.”

9. “The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness.”

10. “And into the forest I go, to lose my mind and find my soul.”

11. “Come to the woods, for here is rest. There is no repose like that of the green deep woods.”

12. “I never saw a discontented tree.”

13. “Few are altogether deaf to the preaching of pine trees. Their sermons on the mountains go to our hearts.”

John Muir Quotes About Mountains

14. “Society speaks and all men listen, mountains speak and wise men listen.”

15. “Doubly happy, however, is the man to whom lofty mountain tops are within reach.”

16. “What a glorious greeting the sun gives the mountains.”

17. “The mountains are calling and I must go.”

18. “Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature’s peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop away from you like the leaves of Autumn.”

john muir quotes about mountains

19. “Thousands of tired, nerve-shaken, over-civilized people are beginning to find out that going to the mountains is going home; that wildness is a necessity.”

20. “We are now in the mountains and they are in us, kindling enthusiasm, making every nerve quiver, filling every pore and cell of us.”

21. “Going to the mountains is going home.”

22. “There is nothing more eloquent in Nature than a mountain stream.”

John Muir Quotes on Hiking

23. “In every walk with Nature one receives far more than he seeks.”

john muir quotes on hiking

24. “I only went out for a walk and finally concluded to stay out till sundown, for going out, I found, was really going in.”

25. “Of all the paths you take in life, make sure a few of them are dirt.”

John Muir Quotes About Yosemite

26. “Another glorious Sierra day in which one seems to be dissolved and absorbed and sent pulsing onward we know not where. Life seems neither long nor short, and we take no more heed to save time or make haste than do the trees and stars. This is true freedom, a good practical sort of immortality.”

27. “No temple made with hands can compare with Yosemite. Every rock in its walls seems to glow with life…as if into this one mountain mansion Nature had gathered her choicest treasures.”

28. “Of all the mountain ranges I have climbed, I like the Sierra Nevada the best.”

29. “It is easier to feel than to realize, or in any way explain, Yosemite grandeur. The magnitudes of the rocks and trees and streams are so delicately harmonized, they are mostly hidden.”

30. “When California was wild, it was the floweriest part of the continent.”

31. “Yosemite Park is a place of rest… None can escape its charms. Its natural beauty cleans and warms like a fire, and you will be willing to stay forever in one place like a tree.”

32. “I must return to the mountains-to Yosemite. I am told that the winter storms there will not be easily borne, but I am bewitched, enchanted, and tomorrow I must start for the great temple to listen to the winter songs and sermons preached and sung only there.”

33. “I cannot tell the glow that lights me at this moment in turning to the mountains. I feel strong [enough] to leap Yosemite walls at a bound.”

Why Trust Know Nothing Nomads?

Since 2017, Know Nothing Nomads has cemented itself as the “approachable experts” in everything camping, hiking, climbing, and adventuring in the Great Outdoors.

With over 60 years of experience in the outdoors, we don’t just talk about outdoor gear or recommend a good hiking trail.

We USE the gear we talk about. We’ve hiked 1000’s of miles. We have camped 1000’s of nights in the wilderness. We have sent hundreds of boulders and projects.

We don’t just know a few things about the outdoors — WE EAT, SLEEP, AND BREATHE IT.

We are not journalists from a magazine telling someone else’s stories from behind a computer. We are the ACTUAL outdoorsmen that those people write about. 

We are not a “gear lab” that runs tests on gear in life-like conditions. We are the seasoned, “trial-by-fire” experts who have taken the gear into the wilderness and USED IT. Read about our gear testing process here

We started Know Nothing Nomads to share our passion and expertise with our readers to inspire, educate, and enable you to explore the outdoors in the way that we have. And you will be more equipped and capable than ever before with the knowledge you gain here guiding you along the way.

And the best part? We are real people that LOVE our readers and this community. If you need anything or have a question about any of the things we have to write about, just reach out. Normally, one of us can respond within 24 hours, sometimes within minutes. THAT is the approachable expert.

You should also know that advertising does not influence our gear reviews in any way, shape, or form, and it never will.

While we always focus our attention on gear that stands out to us—sometimes we discover that things aren’t up to our standards. This is exactly why we will always talk about the downfalls and compromises that we find while we are testing anything (If we find any).

About The Author

Ashley is an adventurous soul who loves all things nature, especially warm sunshine, wildflowers, scenic snacking, and mushrooms. She is an avid outdoor enthusiast who has spent years enjoying time outside doing things like hiking, camping, and rock climbing.
Her goal with Know Nothing Nomads is to make these hobbies easily accessible through knowledgeable content and how-to's based on all the stuff she's learned on her journey. If she isn't writing an article, she's probably in a forest looking at big mountain views and tiny pieces of moss on the side of the trail.

Related Posts

Hey there!

We are Derek and Ashley of Know Nothing Nomads. Whether it is hiking, camping, or just generally being outside, we love it. We are so happy that you have found our little blog and hope that you stick around a while. Feel free to contact us with any questions or get in touch with us on social media!

0 Comments

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Know Nothing Nomads