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Steep Trails Paperback – March 11, 2010

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Editorial Reviews


"Muir's writing has survived for a century because he was not afraid to wear his heart on his sleeve. He didn't hunt or fish in the wilderness, sell trees or snag nuggets, and thus in a sense he has only been freshened for us by the passage of time." -- Edward Hoagland, from his Foreword

"To read this book is like going on a joyous holiday through the most picturesque parts of America." -- The New York Times, December, 1918 --Review --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 432 pages
  • Publisher: BCR (Bibliographical Center for Research) (March 11, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1117870103
  • ISBN-13: 978-1117870106
  • Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 1 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #13,377,466 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Edward Bosnar on December 27, 2001
Format: Paperback
Long before the late David Brower's environmental activism at the helm of the Sierra Club and after led to his designation as the `arch-druid,' John Muir was making epic journeys through the (then much more truly wild) wilderness of the U.S. western states and jotting down his observations as well as his thoughts on Nature and life in general. "Steep Trails" is a collection of pieces covering Muir's various travels through and about Northern California, Nevada, Utah, Oregon, Washington and the Grand Canyon. Writing mainly in the second half of the 19th century, Muir describes the terrain and its characteristics in simple and effective prose, but with the meticulous attention to detail and accuracy of a hard-nosed naturalist. One also cannot help but be impressed with the fact that Muir usually set off on his wilderness treks (often during the winter) with only the most meager of supplies and without the high-tech equipment and various Gore-Tex accoutrements deemed indispensible by today's rugged outdoorsmen. What comes out of Muir's writings and sets him apart from most of his contemporaries is his view that America's vast natural wealth and beauty should be appreciated in and of themselves, above and beyond their functional and economic value as natural resources to be exploited. Despite his firm belief in `progress' and `civilization' as these terms were understood in the nineteenth century (hence his often disparaging commments about the local Indians), at several points Muir showed that he understood the potential dangers of excessive economic development and industrialization.
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