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If you are just beginning activities like hiking, perhaps some of the best books written on the subject are those by Colin Fletcher. He has tried to keep his editions current with trends such as equipment, but his spirit comes through in books like The Complete Walker (his beginner guide) and The Thousand Mile Summer (walking the length of California 12 years before it came popular). Excerpts from The Complete Walker: There is a cardinal rule of travel, all too often overlooked, that I call "The Law of Inverse Appreciation." It states: "The less there is between you and the environment, the more you appreciate the environment." Every walker knows, even if he has not thought about it, the law's most obvious application: the bigger and most efficient your means of travel, the further you become divorced from the reality through which you are travelling. A man learns a thousand times more about the sea from the "Kon Tiki" than from the "Queen Mary;" euphorically more about space at the end of a cord than inside a capsule. On land, you remain closer in touch with the countryside in a slow moving old open touring car than in a modern, air-conditioned, tinted-glass-window, 80-miles-per-hour-and-never-notice-it behemoth. And you come closer in touch on a horse than any car; in closer touch on foot than on any horse. But the law has a second and less obvious application: your appreciation varies not only according to what you travel "in" but also according to what you travel "over." Drive along a freeway in any kind of car and you are in almost zero contact with the country beyond the concrete. Turn off onto a minor highway and you are a notch closer. A narrow country road is better still. When you bump slowly along a jeep trail you begin at last to sense those vital details that turn mere landscape into living countryside. And not long ago, on the East African savanna -- where it was at the time not considered destructive to drive cross-country over the pale grasslands -- I discovered an extending corollary to my law: "The further you move away from any impediment of appreciation, the better it is." It is less obvious that these same discrepancies persist when you are travelling on foot. Any blacktop road holds the scrollwork of the country at arm's length: the road itself keeps stalking along on stilts or grubbing about in a trough, and your feet travel on harsh and sterile pavement. Turn off onto a dusty jeep trail and the detail moves closer. A foot trail is better still. But you do not really have to break free until you step off the trail and walk through waving grass or woodland growth or across rock or smooth sand or (most perfect of all) virgin snow. Now you can read all the details, down to the print. Drifting snow crystals barely begun to blurr the four footed signature of the marten that padded past this lodgepole pine. Or a long-legged lizard scurries for cover, kicking up little spurts of sand as it corners around a bush. . .And always, in snow or sand or rock or seascape grass there is, as far as you can see in any direction, no sign of man. That, I believe, is being in touch with the world. --Colin Fletcher "Technology gets in the way." --Don Norman, Apple Fellow, UCSD Professor Emer. "Defending Human Attributes in the Age of the Machine," Voyager First Person Books-on-CD series See "The All in One Knife" in 'The Gallery of Undefinable Things' An Exhibit from the Collection of Jacques Carelman Fletcher would like this. Back to Fletcher: Other foot notes * It would probably be a good thing if you reread this paragraph at least once -- and tried to remember it later on. This is essentially a "know-how" book, but we must never lose sight of the fact that what matters in the end is the "feel how" of walking. * Frankly, my advice to those genuinely interested in walking has always been to forget the books and to get out and get on with it. Relying on the two finest teachers in the business, trial and error. I'm not at all sure a piece of me that doesn't still stand by that advice. "Once you become a walker, you become a conservationist: no one can walk for days on-end through wild and unspoiled country and then stumble on some man-perpetrated horror without having his blood start to boil.* *At least, I used to think this was so. I'm afraid I am no longer so sure. Appendix IV: Pleasant Quotes for Contemplative Walkers While some people take dispute with the above as being "elitist," counters those those call of elitism exist. Those counters are not included at this point for several reasons which not be elaborated. See the "natural" debate. ----- From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Terry Morse) Subject: The Noise Needers The Noise Needers excerpted from _Journey Into Summer, by Edwin Way Teale (NY: Dodd, Mead, 1960, pp. 21-22) ". . . It is, no doubt, a measure of the stillness of that day that, for a time, the noisiest creatures on the mountaintop were flies. Sitting relaxed, aware of all the little sounds around me, enjoying the peaceful calm of these mountain heights, I remembered the young barber who had cut my hair in a small town a few days before. His great amibition he said, was to work in New York. There was a city! For a good many years, he explained, each summer he had visited his grandfather on his farm in the country. But he couldn't stand it any more. Everything was so quiet! It gave him the creeps. He felt like going out and blowing a trumpet or pounding a drum - anything to make a racket. He represented that new breed, growing in numbers, the Noise Needers. From the outboard motor to the jet airplane, through the radio and TV, the electric razor and the power lawnmower, almost every mechanical advance has added to the noise of the world. Each successive generation lives in a less quiet environment. In consequence, evolution is at work in massed urban centers. For evolution concerns the present as well as the past, ourselves as well as the dinosaurs. Noise is evolving not only the endurers of noise but the needers of noise. Those whose nervous systems are disturbed by uproar are handicapped under such conditions. They are less fitted to maintain good health, to endure and to increase their kind than are those who thrive on clamor. What is strain and distraction to one is a stimulant and a tonic to the other. In step with noisier times, the number of Noise Needers is growing. I was told recently of the art editor of a chain of magazines who carries a pocket radio with him all day long and even places it, turned on, under his pillow when he goes to bed at night. Noise is comforting and reassuring to him. He seems in his proper environment when quiet is eliminated. The metallic clangor of rock-and-roll music is, perhaps, symptomatic of the steady rise in the number of Noise Needers. For them, quiet is somehow unnatural, stillness is somehow unfriendly. They feel better, more at home, when they are surrounded by a din -- any kind of din. They do not merely tolerate noise. They like noise. They need noise. Their world, and those who inhabit it, were far away as I sat in the hush of the mountain glade. . . ." Terry Morse email@example.com ********************************************************************** "Snowmobiles, jet skis, dirt bikes, ATVs - ah for the days when people lived lives of _quiet_ desperation." -- Terry Morse ********************************************************************** ----- Rachel Carson was perhaps the most influential environmentalist to have lived in the modern era. She wrote simply and clearly, and when her ideas came under attack, she was ultimately vindicated. If you want to learn about the backcountry environment, you will find no finer set of books. They rank with Darwin's Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection. She died in 1963 of breast cancer. "We still think in terms of conquest. We still haven't become mature enough to think of ourselves as only a tiny part of a vast and incredible universe. Man's attitude toward nature is today critically important simply because we have now acquired a fateful power to alter and destroy nature. But man is a part of nature and his war against nature is inevitablly a war against himself. The rains have become an instrument to bring down from the atmosphere the deadly products of atomic explosions. Water, which is probably our most important natural resource, is now used and reused with incredible recklessness. Now, I truly believe that we in this generation must come to terms with nature, and I think we're challenged as mankind has never been challenged before to prove our maturity And our mastery, not of nature, but of ourselves." --Rachel Carson "The Silent Spring of Rachel Carson" Copyright \(co 1963 CBS Reports, Columbia Broadcasting System, Inc. *After publication of Silent Spring, certain spokesmen for the pesticide industry claimed that Rachel Carson was not a trained biologist. For them should be reserved a special corner in the Library of Hell, equipped with a barnacle-covered bench and a whale-oil lamp, by whose light they would be compelled to read out loud her masters thesis: "The Development of the Pronephros During the Embryonic and Early Larval of the Catfish (Inctalurus Punctatus)." --Paul Brooks "The House of Life: Rachel Carson at Work," 1972,1989 Her editor TABLE OF CONTENTS of this chain: 8/ Fletcher's Law of Inverse Appreciation and Rachel Carson <* THIS PANEL *> 9/ Water Filter wisdom 10/ Volunteer Work 11/ Snake bite 12/ Netiquette 13/ Questions on conditions and travel 14/ Dedication to Aldo Leopold 15/ Leopold's lot. 16/ Morbid backcountry/memorial 17/ Information about bears 18/ Poison ivy, frequently ask, under question 19/ Lyme disease, frequently ask, under question 20/ "Telling questions" backcountry Turing test 21/ AMS 22/ Words from Foreman and Hayduke 23/ A bit of song (like camp songs) 24/ What is natural? 25/ A romantic notion of high-tech employment 26/ Other news groups of related interest, networking 27/ Films/cinema references 28/ References (written) 1/ DISCLAIMER 2/ Ethics 3/ Learning I 4/ learning II (lists, "Ten Essentials," Chouinard comments) 5/ Summary of past topics 6/ Non-wisdom: fire-arms topic circular discussion 7/ Phone / address lists Article 57347 of rec.backcountry: From: firstname.lastname@example.org (jeffrey trust) Newsgroups: rec.backcountry Subject: Re: Hiking philosophies Organization: California State University Northridge Message-ID: <33k3b0$171@nic-nac.CSU.net> References: <email@example.com> <firstname.lastname@example.org> <email@example.com> Robert Pirsig, quoted in _The_Earth_Speaks_: Mountains should be climbed with as little effort as possible and without desire. The reality of your own nature should determine the speed. If you become restless, speed up. If you become winded, slow down. You climb the mountain in an equilibrium between restlessness and exhaustion. Then, when you're no longer thinking ahead, each footstep isn't just a means to an end but a unique even in itself. *This* leaf has jagged edges. *This* rock looks loose. From *this* place the snow is less visible, even though closer. These are things you should notice anyway. To live only for some future goal is shallow. It's the sides of the mountains which sustain life, not the top... [end] Can't say I'd always agree with this, but when I'm in a rambling mood.... -- Jeffrey Trust (firstname.lastname@example.org). Student, Dept. of Geological Sciences, California State University, Northridge (for which I don't speak). "The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop off like autumn leaves." -John Muir Newsgroups: rec.backcountry Subject: [l/m 6/28/96] Eco-warriors Distilled Wisdom (22/28) XYZ This note is not an endorsement of certain techniques which might be construded as illegal. It is provided purely for informational and amusement purposes only. From Dave Foreman Strategic Monkeywrenching: Monkeywrench alone or with few and absolutely trusted partners. Keep a low profile Avoid sporting "Hayduke Lives" bumperstickers or patches or other visible emblems. Keep "Ecodefense" out of sight. Keep a closed mouth. Do not draw media attention. Avoid targeting national security-related targets or major industrial facilities. Avoid those who talk about monkeywrenching. Avoid or ostracize lunatics, advocates of violences, or immature, macho bigmouths. Minimize the use of monkeywrenching techniques that might be characterized as "violent." Avoid public statements or writing that can be construed as advocating violence. Be willing to disavow stupid acts. Avoid the use or possession of illegal drugs. Remember: Monkeywrenching is nonviolent. Monkeywrenching is not organizaed. Monkeywrenching is individual. Monkeywrenching is targeted. Monkeywrenching is timely. Monkeywrenching is dispersed. Monkeywrenching is diverse. Monkeywrenching is fun. Monkeywrenching is not revolutionary. Monkeywrenching is simple. Monkeywrenching is deliberate and ethical. Intellectual masturabation provides philosophical counters to monkeywrenching. By checking the written literature, the reader will find all the counters to these arguments (some over 200 years old): The destruction of property is wrong. Breaking the law is wrong. Current resource management is sound; these is no bioloigcal crisis; so monkeywrenching is unnecessary. Monkeywrenching is undemocractic, and imposes extremist beliefs on others. [One of the best sounding and most misguided old arguments is the belief in "multiple-use." It isn't.] Monkeywrenching is a tactic of poor losers. Monkeywrenching isn't playing fair. Monkeywrenching threatens human being with injury or death: it is "eco-terrorism." [Foreman says it up there. Read it yourself. You have just heard propaganda.] Monkeywrenching turns one into a criminal. Monkeywrenching leads to vandalism, disrespect for law, and the breakdown of society. By advocating monkeywrenching, one is liable for all excesses -- even those where someone has obviously strayed from published guidelines. If you monkeywrench, you should take credit for your actions and accept punishment as one does for any act of civil disobedience. Monkeywrenching "lowers the standards of civility another notch." By using economic loss as a deterrent, monkeywrenchers buy into the materialistic system. Destroying machines is wrong. Monkeywrenching costs jobs. [E. Abbey: "Cancer causes jobs."] Monkeywrenching is ineffective. Monkeywrenching give the entire environmental movement a bad name and causes an antienvironmental backlash. Read Foreman for elaborations on all of the above. Advice from George Washington Hayduke: 1. Prepare a plan. 2. Gather intelligence. 3. Buy away from home. 4. Never tip your hand. 5. Never admit anything. 6. Never apologize; it's a sign of weakness. *Published in several of his books. Check Books-in-Print for current books. A couple of suggested additions to your distilled wisdom: 1. Monkeywrenching is illegal. 2. Monkeywrenching is deliberate damage to property so as to make it unusable to various legal uses. 3. Monkeywrenching is deliberately placing the life and property of a human being at risk. 4. Monkeywrenching is deliberately violating the constitutional rights of another human being (if done in the USA). 5. Monkeywrenching is an aspect of intellectual arrogance. Notes: 1. This should be obvious, given the advice of Foreman that you cite, but you probably should clarify it. 2. This again should be obvious -- but it points up WHY monkeywrenching is illegal. 3. "Ethical" monkeywrenchers seek to minimize the risk to life -- but they can't escape the fact that people have been seriously injured due to their actions. (Anyone killed yet?) 4. See "due process" and "protection of property rights" decisions of the Supreme Court. 5. As in "I know better than any opponent what should be done here." Conclusary note: Even given all of the above, there may be times when Monkeywrenching is all that remains to prevent an atrocity. But remember what happened to the Luddites and be prepared to suffer likewise! Tim "Here be monsters." "Beware all ye gods who dare to better the fate of mankind, For yours is the fate of Prometheus...." ... You miss one of the more powerful intellectual arguments against monkeywrenching, which is: It gets certain people mad enough to shoot you. Since you're sneaking around avoiding everybody anyway, nobody will see him do it. In fact you'll be lucky if anybody ever finds your corpse. Good luck finding a counterargument for that one in the 200+ years of printed literature. -- Norman Yarvin email@example.com "I never refuse to be on speaking terms with anybody; you lose so many opportunities of saying disagreeable things." -- Lord Fisher. From: Richard Walker <walker@Starbase.NeoSoft.COM> Message-Id: <199409221333.IAA08630@Starbase.NeoSoft.COM> Subject: Re: [l/m 7/26/94] Eco-warriors Distilled Wisdom (22/28) XYZ : This note is not an endorsement of certain techniques which might : be construded as illegal. It is provided purely for informational : and amusement purposes only. Maybe something to add... If you monkeywrench some logging equipment, it can be repaired or replaced and they can come back later. If in reprisal, someone dynamites a scenic waterfall, how will you repair this? "Anything worth fighting for is worth fighting dirty for." # well, I don't believe Foreman would quite go along with this, # but I will add it. old TABLE OF CONTENTS of this chain: 22/ Words from Foreman and Hayduke <* THIS PANEL *> 23/ A bit of song (like camp songs) 24/ What is natural? 25/ A romantic notion of high-tech employment 26/ Other news groups of related interest, networking 27/ Films/cinema references 28/ References (written) 1/ DISCLAIMER 2/ Ethics 3/ Learning I 4/ learning II (lists, "Ten Essentials," Chouinard comments) 5/ Summary of past topics 6/ Non-wisdom: fire-arms topic circular discussion 7/ Phone / address lists 8/ Fletcher's Law of Inverse Appreciation / advice and Rachel Carson 9/ Water Filter wisdom 10/ Volunteer Work 11/ Snake bite 12/ Netiquette 13/ Questions on conditions and travel 14/ Dedication to Aldo Leopold 15/ Leopold's lot. 16/ Morbid backcountry/memorial 17/ Information about bears 18/ Poison ivy, frequently ask, under question 19/ Lyme disease, frequently ask, under question 20/ "Telling questions" backcountry Turing test (under construction) 21/ AMS old TABLE OF CONTENTS of this chain: -- Looking for an H-912 (container).
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