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About the Author: Enos A. Mills

Enos Abijah Mills was born in Kansas but moved to Colorado early in his life during a bout with digestive illness. At age 15, he made his first ascent of the 14,255-foot Longs Peak. Over the course of his life, he made the trip 40 times by himself and nearly 300 additional times as a guide.

In 1887, after returning to health, he moved to Butte, Montana. There he lived and worked intermittently until 1902, spending more summers traveling the West Coast of the United States, Alaska, and Europe. In 1889, he had a chance encounter with famed naturalist John Muir on a San Francisco beach, and from that point on Mills dedicated his life to conservation activism, lecturing, and writing.

In 1902, Mills returned to Colorado and purchased from his cousin the Longs Peak House in Estes Park. He eventually homesteaded in the surrounding area and later turned the Longs Peak house into the Longs Peak Inn, from which he treated guests to excursions into the wilderness and evening nature talks.

From 1902-1906, Mills also served as the Colorado State Snow Observer, a position that took him into the wild he so loved. His job was to measure the snow depths to predict spring and summer runoff. Following this position, he served as government lecturer on forestry from 1907-1909. During this time, he also authored several articles and books on nature and Estes Park area.

Throughout his time in various assignments, Mills was also leading the fight to preserve the area around Longs Peak as a national park. Aided by groups such as the Sierra Club and the Daughters of the American Revolution, Mills succeeded and Congress established Rocky Mountain National Park in 1915. Called the "Father of Rocky Mountain National Park," Mills continued to lecture and write books until his untimely death at age 52 in 1922.

From: National Park Service Founders: Enos Mills

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ISBN10: 1444668099 | ISBN13: 9781444668094

This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text. Purchasers can usually download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated. 1915 edition. Excerpt: ... /vvot until one year of drought did I realize how dependent the beaver is upon a constant water-supply that is both fresh and ample. A number of beaver colonies close to my cabin were badly afflicted by this dry period. I was already making special studies of beaver ways among the forty-odd beaver colonies that were within a few miles of my mountain home, and toward the close of this droughty summer I made frequent rounds among the beaver. By the middle of September I confined these attentions to five of the colonies that were most affected by low water. Two were close to each other, but upon separate brooks. The other three were upon one tumbling streamlet. Autumn is the busiest time of the year in beaver world. Harvest is then gathered, the dam is repaired, sometimes the pond is partly dredged, and the house is made ready for winter, --all before the pond freezes over. But Q oc6g (fltounfmn TUonbetfanb drought had so afflicted these colonies that in only one had any of the harvest been gathered. This one I called the Cascade Colony. It was the uppermost of the three that were dependent upon this one stream. Among the five colonies that I observed that autumn, this one had the most desperate and tragic experience. Toward the close of September the colonists in each of the five colonies gave most of their attention to the condition of their dam. Every leak was stopped, and its water face was given a thick covering of mud, most of which was dredged from the bottom of the pond. The beaver is intimately associated with water. He is not a landsman, and only necessity will cause him to go far from the water. The water in a main beaver pond is usually three or more feet deep, a depth needed all the year around. Where nature has provided a..

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