This means that this person does not agree that something is true, but that it also is not entirely wrong. The friend asks him if weather like, what is to the friend, a perfect spring day makes him glad to be alive. Samuel does not hold the opinion that a perfect spring day makes him glad to be alive. However, by saying "I wouldn't go as far as that" he is also saying that the weather is at least very nice.
A simpler example might be if the friend said "It is a perfect spring day," and Samuel said "I wouldn't go as far as that." In this case, he simply means the weather is not quite perfect. Perhaps the temperature could be slightly warmer or cooler, and Samuel would prefer that. Whatever the case, he would not make the statement himself that the weather is perfect, but he might say that it is nearly perfect.