Cover image for Isabella Lucy Bird's "A lady's life in the Rocky Mountains" : an annotated text
Isabella Lucy Bird's "A lady's life in the Rocky Mountains" : an annotated text
Bird, Isabella L. (Isabella Lucy), 1831-1904.
Uniform Title:
Lady's life in the Rocky Mountains
Publication Information:
Norman : University of Oklahoma Press, [1999]

Physical Description:
xii, 276 pages : illustrations, map ; 24 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
F782.R6 B55 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



The watershed year of Isabella Lucy Bird's life was 1873. In autumn of that year, the forty-one-year-old English gentlewoman embarked by rail from San Francisco's east bay, bound for the Colorado Rockies. A challenging journey, it drove Bird to the utmost physical effort and initiated her lifelong career in what today is called adventure travel. More than one hundred twenty years after their first publication, Isabella Bird's letters to her sister continue to thrill readers with their account of the then-untamed and largely unknown American mountain wilderness.

This elegant illustrated edition of Bird's A Lady's Life in the Rocky Mountains, annotated by Ernest S. Bernard, sheds fresh light on ambiguities and obscurities in Bird's letters and contains new details about the frontier Rocky Mountain West -- a region Bird found so beautiful that she gently chided "nature for her close imitation of art".

Readers will share Bird's joy and terror as she scales the nearly sheer face of Longs Peak; her wistfulness and wonder in the company of the dashing, doomed mountain man, "Rocky Mountain Jim"; and her unalloyed rapture as she glories in "the rushing winds, the piled-up peaks, the great pines, the wild night noises, the poetry and prose" of her beloved mountains.

In addition to a map of Bird's 1873 route and contemporary photographs, this new annotated edition includes an appendix that illustrates and charts the course of Bird's historic ascent of Longs Peak, allowing travelers -- real and armchair -- to share the dangers and discoveries of Isabella Lucy Bird's amazing journey.