My collection of outdoor quotes I’ve gotten from trail journals on The Appalachian Trail, Pacific Crest Trail and CDT and elsewhere. –Keith Drury  www.keithdrury.com


Thunder is good, thunder is impressive,

but it is the lightning that does the work.

        -Mark Twain


I like trees because

they seem more resigned

to the way they have to live

than other things do.

        -Willa Cather, O Pioneers


It is unfair

to blame man too fiercely for being pugnacious;

he learned the habit from nature.

        -Christopher Moreley, Inward Ho!


Never does nature say one thing

and wisdom another.

               -Juvenal, Satires


Silently one by one,

in the infinite meadows of heaven,

blossomed the lovely stars,

the forget-me-nots of the angels.

        -Longfellow, Evangeline


The whole secret of the study of nature

lies in learning how to use one's eyes.

                   -George Sand


Someone said to Socrates

that a certain man had

grown no better by his travels.

"I should think not," he said:

"he took himself along with him."

                  -Michel de Montaigne


A traveler.

I love his title.

A traveler is to be reverenced as such.

His profession is the best symbol of our life.

Going from--toward;

it is the history of every one of us.

                   -Henry David Thoreau


One touch of nature makes the whole world kin.

                -Shakespeare Trollus and Cressida


People from a planet without flowers would think

we must be mad with joy the whole time to have such things about us.

                 -Iris Murdoch A Fairly Honorable Defeat


The wind shows us how close to the edge we are

                         -Joan Didion


Rocks do not recommend the land

to the tiller of the soil,

but they recommend it

to those who reap a harvest of another sort

--the artist, the poet, the walker, the student,

and lover of all primitive open-air things.

                     -John Burroughs


Thanks to the interstate highway system,

it is now possible to travel across the country

from coast to coast without seeing anything.    

                 -Charles Kuralt, On The Road


Sweet is the breath of morn, her rising sweet,

With charm of earliest birds.

                  -John Milton Paradise Lost


The wind blows where it chooses,

you hear the sound of it,

but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes.

                  -John 3:8


To make a prairie it takes clover and one bee,

One clover and a bee,

And revery.

The revery alone will do,

If bees are few.

                -Emily Dickinson


There can be no very black melancholy to him

who lives in the midst of nature and has his senses still.

There was never yet such a storm

but it was Aeolian music to a healthy and innocent ear.

                  -Henry David Thoreau, Walden


Every formula which expresses a law of nature

is a hymn of praise to God.

                              -Maria Mitchell


For my part, I travel not to go anywhere, but to go.

I travel for travel's sake.

The great affair is to move.

          -Robert Loius Stevenson, Travels with a Donkey


A road is a dagger placed in the heart of a wilderness.

               -William O. Douglas, in Ghost Grizzlies


Do not look to the ground for your next step;

greatness lies with those who look to the horizon.

                      --Norwegian Proverb


I do not own an inch of land,

but all I see is mine.

           Lucy Larcom


I have been one acquainted with the night.

I have walked out in the rain.

I have outwalked the furthest city light.

        -Robert Frost, Acquainted with the Night.


I chatter, chatter, as I flow,

To join the brimming river,

For men may come and men may go,

But I go on forever

         --Alfred Lord Tennyson The Brook


The clearest way into the universe

is through a forest wilderness.

                            -John Muir


The mountains lie in the curves so tender

I want to lay my arm around them

as God does.

             -Olive Dargan, Twilight


The substance of the winds is too thin for human eyes,

their written language is too difficult for human minds,

and their spoken language mostly too faint for the ears.

                                                    -John Muir


Here I am, safely returned

over those peaks from a journey far more beautiful and strange

than anything I had hoped for or imagined

--how is it that this safe return brings such regret?

        -Peter Matthiessen


A man does not climb a mountain

without bringing some of it away with him,

and leaving something of himself upon it."

                             -- Sir Martin Conway


 "We don't stop hiking because we grow old,

we grow old because we stop hiking." 

                                 -- Finis Mitchell,


 email: keith.drury@indwes.edu

web: www.KeithDrury.com