Saturday, April 11, 2020

Stay-at-home shelfie #14

And now we transition from things that go bump in the night to the great outdoors...

I wrote in June 2018 about the Appalachian Trail and how I once had Big Plans™ for embarking on such a trek. An excerpt:
"When my friend Mike McCombs and I were copy editors at the Spartanburg Herald-Journal in the late 1990s, we shared the dream of thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine. While editing and designing the pages for the sports section, we would discuss taking six months off from work, acquiring backpacks and gear, mailing supplies ahead and enjoying life on the Trail."
I think the only way I'm better-suited today for the Appalachian Trail than I was two decades ago is that I have a better photographic eye. So I'd be able to expertly document the six or seven miles I'd traverse before collapsing into a middle-aged heap. But I still have some of the books. The Rodale books are gems of first-person accounts of life on the trail before it was truly packed with over-equipped adventurers. Here's an excerpt from P.J. Wetzel's 2013 Goodreads review:
"At just under 2000 pages (almost five inches thick), this is a real undertaking to read, yet I found nearly every page worth my while. This is a compendium of forty six through-hike trail memoirs written by the hikers themselves. The list of authors is a veritable Who's Who of AT pioneers, including Grandma Gatewood who hiked the entire trail three times starting at age 66 wearing ordinary sneakers and carrying a denim sack slung over her shoulder. ... Writing styles are as varied as the characters who populate the trail itself. ... If you want a compendium that truly gets you in on the ground floor and fully immerses you in the history and flavor of the priceless institution that the Appalachian Trail has become, then this work is the definitive one, and worth the time to read cover-to-cover."
This section of shelf is definitely themed on the idea of wandering outdoors, with authors ranging from Arthur Machen to W.G. Sebald to Robert Macfarlane. The skinny staplebound booklets are by Dr A and Dr H of And the buttons are from Oak Crest Lane, collected over the decades by Greta Miriam Chandler Adams. They were in an old tin and I transferred them to a more visually interesting container for display.

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