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We know where the snow lies deepest,
We know where the storm clouds rise,
Where the mist comes down from the mountain
And the treasure that all men prize.
New Zealand Mountain Flora.
I can recall the time when my idea of a mountain was of huge rocks piled up wedged together, dreary to behold and impossible to climb.
In those days our splendid Alpine ranges were known only to a few hardy explorers, now they are visited by thousands. Great was my surprise when first I realized that the mountains were not all storm swept, snow-clad giant rocks and stones, but that their rugged sides were often clothed with vegetation, grass, moss, tiny flowers and hardy shrubs, while in sheltered places and valleys a more luxuriant growth springs up, larger flowers and magnificent leaves charm the eye and cause one to marvel how they can exist on such scanty soil; a botanist would understand, but how few of us are botanists, and even when described in plain language a vivid imagination only could picture them as they are.
During a visit to Taranaki I went to the Egmont ranges and found a number of flowers, Ourisia macrophilla, Anthericum Hookeri, Everlastings and others. I camped for five days at the foot of Mount Egmont.