William Brewer
Led the first and most widespread exploration of California’s landscape in history – 2005

A geologist/botanist/naturalist, Brewer led the first and most widespread exploration of California’s landscape in history. His trek from 1860-64 by foot, horseback and boat explored virtually every part of California’s topography in detail, along with its plants and wildlife. His small team, including legendary geologist Josiah Whitney, carried bulky gear and 5-foot barometers to calculate elevations and, as part of the expedition, climbed all of California’s highest peaks.Brewer recorded his findings, analysis, elevation calculations and amazing personal reflections in a massive diary that still sells today, titled “Up and Down California.” He documented the biggest flood in the past 200 years, when the Central Valley was covered with water from Red Bluff to Bakersfield, 70 miles wide. When the Los Angeles basin had only 12,000 residents, he predicted the massive population increase that followed. This diary is still considered the bible of California outdoors, and has inspired thousands to explore many of the same places Brewer recorded on his trek.