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Backpacking: One Step at a Time Paperback – March 12, 1986


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Backpacking: One Step at a Time + Mountaineering First Aid: A Guide to Accident Response and First Aid Care (Mountaineers Outdoor Basics)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 496 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage; 4 edition (March 12, 1986)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0394729390
  • ISBN-13: 978-0394729398
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.5 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #306,029 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

YA Current information on hiking gear and clothing plus all of the essentials of striking out into the wilderness on one's own. Not only does the book clearly explain how to enjoy hiking and walking, but also how to minimize the impact of this popular activity on the natural environment.
Copyright 1986 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From the Inside Flap

Recent innovations in backpacking gear and clothing are all covered in this new revision which continues to contain everything you need to know to strike out in the wilderness. Illustrated. A classic!

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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I most highly recommend this book for the beginner or experienced hiker.
Keith R. Bridgman
I strongly recomend this book to any novice backpackers, along with Karen Berger's new Hiking and Backpacking.
Robert Whitney
Equipment information is out of date now, but is still an excellant book.
Louis Sabo

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Keith R. Bridgman on January 25, 2006
Format: Paperback
I purchased one of the first editions of this classic way back in 1973 or 1974. I still have that book, dog-eared pages and all and consider it the best book on the subject ever written. The hilarious cartoon drawings hit the nail on the head in how they demonstrate visually what the author was trying to convey in words. My edition is somewhat dated now, but the concepts and techniques never really change. This book in my opinion set the standard. During those times I am confined to house and home, I often pull this book off the shelf and thumb thru it. Just looking thru it is enough to get one fired up about getting out. It is a well done...well thought out book with wonderfully creative writing highlighted with comical illustrations. It goes beyond the mechanical technical aspects of backpacking and explores the how and why of the endeavor. I most highly recommend this book for the beginner or experienced hiker.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Kauaijohn on November 23, 2000
Format: Paperback
Before I ever set foot into the wilderness, I read Harvey Manning's book cover to cover (several times). It prepared me for a lifetime of low environmental impact adventures in the ever more crowded wild parts of the country. Though the equipment advice may now be dated, his approach to living and playing in the great outdoors is timeless. "TAKE ONLY PHOTOGRAPHS, LEAVE ONLY FOOTPRINTS" is more important now than ever before. Mr. Manning's book teaches/reminds us that there is a limited amount of wilderness out there to be enjoyed by an always growing number of people. Following the advice in this book will help prepare the reader for a more safe, comfortable and, ultimately, more enjoyable experience outdoors.
Sure, there are more up-to-date guides on equipment. Buy the ultimate hiking boot and six months later there's a new, improved model available. Equipment guides are that way. The wilderness, however, is different. Trash a meadow, cut down a 500 year old tree, scrawl your name on a rock face and the special feeling that you are in a pristine, untouched place is gone. That place has been ruined for every backpacker and hiker who follows. This book shows how to enjoy what is out there without destroying the reason we escape into the wilderness in the first place!
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Gregory R Waldrop on July 5, 2002
Format: Paperback
I have tried numerous backpacking books and this is the best one. It has a lot of information and should help you get started in backpacking.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Jim Morrison on November 16, 2007
Format: Paperback
Ok, I wasn't sure how to rate this item. Yes it is outdated (I think the last (updated) printing was 1985, I have that one and the First Edition). Nevertheless, like the artwork of an old master, it's beauty isn't spoiled by time. In addition, certain things haven't changed at all. Sure the manufacturers would like you to think you can hike with only expensive state-of-the-art gear, but that simply is not so. Manning has a pleasant writing style so you can read this cover to cover, or you can use it as reference since it is very well organized. The cartoons are splendid. He gets into technical aspects to an adequate degree without dragging down the flow of information. Now Fletcher/Rawlins' "The Complete Walker IV" (2002, Knopf)is an excellent reference also, but treats the subject from a different perspective, so while it duplicates much of Manning, it doesn't cover everything Manning covers, at least in the same style. So in conclusion, you can't go too far wrong with Manning's "Backpacking one Step at a Time" as your guide to backpacking. If you want to know more up to date information you can find all that on the internet at hundreds of sites and forums.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Robert Whitney on March 30, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this book ar EMS in Boston in 1973 when I first started backpacking. the priciples he teaches this book still hold true today. I strongly recomend this book to any novice backpackers, along with Karen Berger's new Hiking and Backpacking. My grandson is learning and enjoying from this edition now. This book is timeless. It is a must read!
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful By David Hostetler on December 3, 2005
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am on my second copy of Backpacking One Step At A Time, and have used it for years on end to help fine tune the art of whittling down my weight, and improving the art of backpacking. When friends ask what I would reccomend gear wise, I toss them a copy of this book. But there have been so many advances in ultralight gear over the last 20 + years since the release of this book, that it is woefully behind the times. I love the book, I love the writing style of Mr. Manning, I just wish that there was a 5th or so Edition. I would hate to see the wonderful, and helpful information in this book go to waste because gear technology has changed. There is just too much priceless information to let it slide into oblivion.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By RopeMan on August 23, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Bought this for my 27 year old son who slowly finds himself turning into me. He wanted to do some backpacking to I bought him a couple books that I used when I was younger. Very up to date and a good introduction to a life-time activity.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 18, 1997
Format: Paperback
Manning's book covers everything you need to know about venturing into the out of doors. From equipment selection to breaking camp, this book is packed with information for beginners and experience outdoorsmen alike. -Mike Harmer, Editor of Scouting Onlin
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