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A tour of the Seven Natural Wonders of the United States


Although the fall is the best time, generally speaking, to visit the United States, on account of the magnificent weather and the beauty of the foliage, the Yellowstone Park is only available during the summer months, on account of its high elevation. The best months in which to make the following tour are April, May and June. The lovely Yosemite Valley is then seen at its very best.

1st day
New York. As with all of the tours in the United States referred to in preceding pages, we will again take the Empire City as our starting point for this specially interesting tour, and two days, at least, may be pleasantly and profitably spent here before commencing our journey
3d day
Philadelphia (two hours by rail from New York), the solid, substantial Quaker city, and emphatically the city of homes. After visiting the relics of colonial days, a drive to Fairmount Park or a trip to Atlantic City will be refreshing
5th day
Washington, D.C. (four hours by rail from Philadelphia). The Capitol is one of the most striking buildings in the country, if not in all the world, and a thorough inspection of this mighty architectural monument is incumbent on every visitor to the center of American official life. A drive through the magnificent residential quarter, visits to the White House, the many government offices and the Congressional Library, together with a trip to Mount Vernon, will well occupy at least two busy days or more.
8th day
Louisville, Ky. (twenty hours by rail from Washington), the heart of old Kentucky, cele- bra ted the world over for the beauty of its women, the hospitality of its men, and the quality of the horses bred there. From Louisville the excursion is made to the Mammoth Caves, about four hours by rail each way. These are the largest known caves, and extend for nearly ten miles underground, while the several avenues already explored have a total length of about 175 miles. The interior contains a vast series of halls, domes, grottoes, caverns, lakes, rivers, etc., besides a few stalactites and stalagmites of immense size. The long route through the caves takes about nine hours, and the short one about four hours.
11th day
Denver, Col. (about forty-five hours by rail from Louisville via St. Louis and Kansas City). A finely laid-out city, its population mainly interested in the gold, silver and copper mines of the Rocky Mountains.
14th day
Colorado Springs, Col. (two hours and a half by rail from Denver), a beautiful summer resort. The mineral springs are at Manitou, a short distance by trolley, and near by is the Garden of the Gods, from which the ascent of Pike's Peak ( 14,147 feet) can be made by cog railroad.
16th day
Salt Lake City, Utah (twenty-four hours by rail from Colorado Springs). The rail journey is through the heart of the Rockies, passing a series of wonders, both in engineering skill and scenery, from first to last. Since the Gentile has been admitted to Salt Lake City, the city has greatly improved. A bath in the lake at Saltair will be found very refreshing after a long, and generally warm, railroad journey.
18th day
Los Angeles, Cal. (about twenty-four hours from Salt Lake City by limited train), head- quarters of the orange-growing district of southern California. A drive to Riverside and Pasadena is a revelation to persons interested in irrigation and fruit-growing in a naturally dry country.
21st day
The Grand Canon of Arizona (from twenty- four to thirty hours by rail from Los Angeles, depending on the train and season) is the most stupendous chasm in the United States. It is about two hundred miles long by more than thirteen miles across at its widest part, and about a mile deep. It consists of a terraced valley of colored rocks, from which rises a bewildering array of temples and towers of nature's building and coloring. It has been pronounced by a man who has seen most of the world's natural wonders, to be the most wonderful of them all.
25th day From the Grand Canon to Fresno (about twenty-six hours by rail from Grand Canon)

26th day

Yosemite National Park. In order to see the wonders of the Yosemite Valley to the best ad- vantage, it is best to enter from Fresno or Berenda, via the Mariposa Grove of Big Trees and Inspiration Point, and leave by Oh My Point and the Merced Big Trees. One week is required for the double journey and to see the Bridal Veil (860 feet), Vernal, Nevada and Yosemite Falls (2,600 f eet) _and the other natural wonders of the valley.
32d day
San Francisco (six hours by rail from Merced). The pioneer city of the Pacific Coast, where there is more of cosmopolitan life than in New York City. Elegant hotels and restaurants were plentiful before the earthquake, and these are being rebuilt — in many cases on a more sumptuous scale. Excursions to the Cliff House, recently burned down, Golden Gate Park, Mount Tamalpais and Monterey
  A trip from San Francisco to the Hawaiian Islands and back takes about a month, although Honolulu is only seven days distant. It is to the island of Hawaii that the traveler is attracted, on account of the volcano. A steamer leaves Honolulu every week, reaching Hilo in about thirty hours. There is a train from Hilo to Oloa, nine miles, which connects with a stage for the Volcano Hotel. Total time from Honolulu, about forty-eight hours. The highest mountains in Hawaii are Mauna Kea ( 13,805 feet) and Mauna Loa (13,675 feet). On the eastern slope of the latter, at an altitude of over 4,000 feet, is the great Volcano Kilauea, and on the summit is the crater of Mokuaweoweo.
37th day
Portland, Ore. (thirty-six hours by rail from San Francisco). Travelers should leave San Francisco by night so as to enjoy the magnificent view, in the morning, of Mount Shasta, which is in sight nearly the whole of the next day. Portland is the metropolis of the North Pacific slope, commanding a fine view of Mount Hood (11,225 feet). An excursion by rail from Portland to The Dalles, and back by steamer down the Columbia River, gives a good idea of the scenery along this great river.
40th day Seattle, Wash, (seven hours by rail from Portland), has come into considerable prominence since the Klondike gold discoveries, and it is from this city the steamers leave for Alaska.

41st day
50th day

The voyage from Tacoma, Seattle or Victoria to Sitka and return, by tourist steamer, occupies about ten days, and the voyage is full of interest. First there are the island-dotted channels until The din of the Treadwell 900-stamp mill on Douglas Island, farther north, can be heard miles before it is reached. From Skaguay a trip by rail can be made over the White Pass (3 ,000 feet) , which proved so disastrous to the Klondike gold-seekers in the winter of 1897-98. The great features of the trip, however, are the glaciers, which discharge their bergs directly into the sea. By the tourist steamer three of these glaciers are visited, — the Davidson, the Muir and the Taku. The turning point of the trip is the old Russian sealing station, — the town of Sitka. Other attractions are the Indian totem poles and the nightless days, although the sun is absent for about four hours.
51st day
Yellowstone National Park (about forty hours by rail from Seattle) is about 50 miles wide by 60 miles long, and comprises 3,312 square miles. In this area there is a wonderful collection of $$ geysers, besides the Grand Canon of the Yellow- stone, which is about 20 miles long, 1,200 feet deep and 2,000 feet wide, where the weird effect of abandon and wantonness of color in everything visible is enhanced by the grandeur of the falls and the mad frenzy of the roaring river. The Park is national property, and has fine roads and hotels, besides being an immense preserve for native wild animals.
59th day
St. Paul, Minn, (twenty-four hours by rail from Yellowstone Park). The grain center of the Northwest. Across the Mississippi River is its twin city, Minneapolis. The two cities are close commercial rivals.
61st day
Chicago, Ill. (ten hours by rail from St. Paul). The great railroad center of the West, and the provider of food (much of it in cans) for a large proportion of the meat-eaters of the human race. A handsome, breezy city, with grand boulevards and parks. The great features, however, are the stockyards and slaughter-houses of Armour & Co. and others.
63d day Niagara Falls. The second-largest known falls in the world, the Victoria Falls of the Zambesi ranking first. Above and below the falls are rapids, which are almost as awe-inspiring as the falls themselves
64th day
Leave Niagara Falls by the Gorge route, skirt- ing the Niagara River a few miles, for Lewiston ; thence by steamer across Lake Ontario for Toronto, the capital of the province of Ontario. Leave Toronto by afternoon steamer for Kingston, arriving early next morning, when a change of steamer is made for the Thousand Islands and the Rapids of the St. Lawrence, reaching Montreal in the evening.
66th day Montreal, P.Q. The commercial capital of Canada. Notre Dame Cathedral, the old Chateau de Ramsey and the French Market are well worth a visit, while a magnificent drive is to the top of Mount Royal
67th day
Quebec, P.Q. (six hours by rail, or overnight by steamer, from Montreal). The fortress city commanding the passage of the St. Lawrence, and wrested from the French under Montcalm by General Wolfe, on the Plains of Abraham. An interesting excursion by carriage is to the Montmorency Falls, the shrine of Ste. Anne de Beaupre (the Lourdes of America), and, on returning, to the field of battle where fell the two great generals, September 13, 1759
69th day Return by rail via Montreal, and thence to Bluff Point or Plattsburg, on Lake Champlain.
70th day By steamer through Lakes Champlain and George to Saratoga. Lake George is the most beautiful and historically interesting sheet of water in the Eastern States, and during these last few days the whole journey is filled with the history of the English-French colonial life so graphically described by Francis Parkman and James Fenimore Cooper.
71st day Saratoga. The most fashionable spa in the United States.
72d day Leave Saratoga by early train for Albany, thence by steamer on the famous Hudson River for New York, which we reach by 6 P.M.
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