In a ravine near by was a large flowing spring of alum water, and several of sulphate of copper. Springs of this latter class are always clear and deep, with beautiful basins, raised slightly at the rim, and lined with incrustations of brilliant colors. Scattered over the whole area of one-fourth of a mile in diameter, in addition to the above, were hundreds of small spouts of vapor, water, and mud. In a basin by itself was a black mud spring, 20 by 40 feet, throwing mortar a distance of 70 feet; this substance was so strongly impregnated with sulphuric acid as to burn the tongue like fire in its intense sourness. All the mud springs are double, and most of the water springs also; each one having, in addition to its crater, and generally in the margin thereof or near it, a honey-comb vent in the ground, or rock, through which sulphur vapor escapes with a frying sound; doubtless a vent for the internal fires below. This rule applies in all localities in the basin. The amount of pure crystaline sulphur deposited in this locality is very great, probably one hundred tons could be gathered in sight on the surface. The continuous supply will one day be turned to account, in the manufacture of acids on a large scale.
There being no water fit to drink in the vicinity, we moved on up the valley, about five miles, through grassy hills and level bottoms, passing several isolated caldrons of gray mud on the way, and camped in a group of them, on the river bank, at the head of the valley. Here trout were caught in abundance, and we fared sumptuously, with the single exception that the river water tasted strongly of chemicals, and that all other available water tasted still worse than the river. Those of the party who sported silver watches now discovered that they were no longer silver, but a greasy, pinchbeck yellow; discolored by the gases in the atmosphere of the spring. Arms were also affected, the polished surfaces becoming spotted with black. Distance, 12 miles.
Barometer, 22.75; thermometer, 60°; elevation, 7.487 feet.
Twelfth day -- September 2. -- We remained
in camp on the river, and visited springs in the neighborhood. Along the
bank of the stream Go
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