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Other titles in the Official Guides to the Appalachian Trail series:
The Appalachian Trail Reader (Official Guides to the Appalachian Trail)by David Emblidge
Synopses & Reviews
The Appalachian Trail is the longest continuous footpath in the world. Its 2,140 miles run through 14 states--from Georgia to Maine--and vastly different natural and social environments, from the solitary splendor of mountain crags to the genial slopes frequented by dayhikers and scout packs. Each year, more than three million visitors enjoy the diverse scenery and cultures of the trail, united by a common appreciation for the outdoors. A lively and evocative introduction to this national treasure, The Appalachian Trail Reader collects stories, poems, and essays that reflect this wilderness trail across both time and geography.
Here are the works of both well-known writers and anonymous raconteurs, including Henry David Thoreau, James Dickey, Aldo Leopold, Washington Irving, James MacGregor Burns, Richard Wilbur, and many others, as well as excerpts from the diaries and letters of modern day visitors. Hikers' private journals stand next to scientists' close observations of the natural world, and these readings mingle with poets' evocations of meaningful music heard in the wind, in birdsong, or in the babbling brooks. Here, too, are historians, who remind us of how Appalachian culture developed, and early explorers, reporting the thrill of seeing uncharted territory and wildlife for the first time. Taken as a whole, this patchwork quilt of voices both eloquent and raw offers a surprisingly varied pattern of appreciation for the wilds of the Appalachians. With the addition of maps of the trail and photographs of its majesty, The Appalachian Trail Reader presents a rich introduction to the trail for those planning a trip, and a vivid scrapbook for those who've already visited.
Originally conceived as an antidote to the competitive, fast-paced, and increasingly urban civilization that America was becoming, the Appalachian Trail is more than an experience of geology and natural history; indeed, it is a vast open-air cathedral where the emotions and the senses unite. The Appalachian Trail Reader bears out this spirit, offering a heart-felt appreciation of one of our greatest natural resources while it presents an opportunity to escape the stresses of everyday life and revel in the inestimable value of a wilderness experience.
The longest continuously marked footpath in the world, the Appalachian Trail spans 2,140 miles across fourteen states--from Georgia to Maine--and travels through vastly different natural and social environments. Now, in a lively and eye-opening introduction to this national treasure, The Appalachian Trail Reader collects trail diaries, historical and personal essays, and poems that reflect the meaning of this great wilderness trail across both time and geography.
Here are the works of both well-known writers and anonymous raconteurs, including Henry David Thoreau, James Dickey, Aldo Leopold, James MacGregor Burns, Richard Wilbur, and many others. The trail's founding fathers Benton MacKaye and Myron Avery speak here, too, about their visions and plans, while excerpts from Appalachian Trail hikers' journals, from the 1930s to the 1990s, provide a firsthand, intimate portrait of walking the trail. And throughout, scientists' close observation of the natural world mingle with poet's evocations of the sweetness or the rigors of the wilderness experience.
A patchwork quilt of voices, both eloquent and raw, The Appalachian Trail Reader presents a rich introduction to the trail for those planning a walking trip, and a vivid scrapbook for those who have already hiked its mountains or valleys.
The longest continuously marked footpath in the world, the Appalachian Trail spans 2,140 miles across fourteen states--from Georgia to Maine--and encompasses vastly different natural and social environments. This lively and eye-opening introduction to this national treasure collects trail diaries and historical and personal essays which reflect the meaning of this great wilderness trail across both time and geography. 24 illustrations. 6 maps.
About the Author
David Emblidge has hiked sections of the Appalachian trail in seven states as well as other trails in North America and Europe. He writes and edits books on literary, historical, and outdoor recreation subjects. His own work has appeared in The New Republic, MD, Saturday Review, The Boston Globe, The New York Times, and The Berkshire Eagle. He serves on the board of directors of the Massachusetts Audubon Society (Berkshire Sanctuaries) and was a director of the Berkshire County Historical Society.
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