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View Full Version : anyone read "Dead Men Hike No Trails"??



lloyd528
09-23-2009, 11:33
I am planning a thru hike in 2011. My wife and I did Springer-Vermont in 78' but had to leave the trail unfortunately. There are so many books out there related to thru hiking. I want a philosophical book, by a "writer", not a nuts and bolts one. Years ago we read Applalachian Odessy. Would anyone reccomend "Dead Men Hike No Trails" by Rick Mckinney?....sounds interesting but I wouldn't mind a referral before reading it. Anyone have a couple in mind that are contemporary, philosophical and well written? Please, I don't want Bill Byson's book for a laugh.

Thanks, Lloyd

Donnie
09-23-2009, 12:06
I have read DMHNT and, although it started off rather entertaining, it quickly became laborious to read. The things I found interesting in the beginning (such as his battle with depression, his substance/alcohol abuse, and interesting interpretation of the world through rants) became boring to read because they repeated CONSTANTLY throughout the book. The writing is decent although it is sometimes a little hard to follow the train of through of the writer. As with most books, spend the dough and give it a shot -- you may like it. When I purchased the book from Amazon, it had 15 or so reviews and all were 5-star. Maybe I am looking for a different read than most?

The first book I read on the AT, and still my favorite to this day, it On the Beaten Path: An Appalachian Pilgrimage by Robert Alden Rubin. I could give a brief description of the nature of the book but I doubt I could say anything different from what numerous other reviewers had already said. I would suggest checking out this book before McKinneys.

As always, YMMV and HYOH,
Donnie

Rain Man
09-23-2009, 12:44
... I want a philosophical book, by a "writer", not a nuts and bolts one....

Definitely then, "As Far As The Eye Can See" by David Brill

Also, "Walking North, A Family Hikes the Appalachian Trail" by Mic Lowther

And perhaps "Story Line: Exploring the Literature of the Appalachian Trail" by Ian Marshall.

All very fine, not just nuts and bolts, but a thinking-person's read.

Rain:sunMan

.

sbhikes
09-23-2009, 13:12
If you're willing to read about the PCT you might enjoy A Thru-Hiker's Heart by "No Way" Ray Echols. He has a lovely way of describing the inner thoughts and feelings of hiking a long trail.

mrc237
09-23-2009, 14:28
I enjoyed DMHNT and Rick is a great guy!

Jack Tarlin
09-23-2009, 15:11
I know Rick well and he really is a great guy.

energy_turtle
09-23-2009, 15:14
Definitely then, "As Far As The Eye Can See" by David Brill

Also, "Walking North, A Family Hikes the Appalachian Trail" by Mic Lowther

And perhaps "Story Line: Exploring the Literature of the Appalachian Trail" by Ian Marshall.

All very fine, not just nuts and bolts, but a thinking-person's read.

Rain:sunMan

.

2nd on Lowther's book...really enjoyed that one. AWOL on the App Trail is another good read.

Blue Jay
09-23-2009, 17:57
Model T Tate is my favorite AT writer, Rick is a close second, with AWOL a close third. Liteshoe would be in the running, possibly the winner, however her AT book is waaay overdue.

robmurphy
09-24-2009, 02:01
Just about all the other books on the AT experience seem to be based more or less on real experiences.

DMHNT felt like it was written in a psych ward or as a freshman college assignment - hard to separate fact from fabrication. IMHO there are many other books that are far superior. To each his own, though.

Blue Jay
09-25-2009, 10:26
DMHNT felt like it was written in a psych ward or as a freshman college assignment - hard to separate fact from fabrication. IMHO there are many other books that are far superior. To each his own, though.

Other than the, to each his own, I could not disagree more. You much not read all that much as it is almost always difficult to separate fact from fabrication in any nonfiction work. If you read two different reports of the same event, often they read as two completely different events, perception changes everything. I find it interesting that you did not name a single one of the many, that is superior.

Blue Jay
09-25-2009, 10:36
After my last post I realized I never said why I liked DMHNT. Most AT books are about external events, I was here, I did this, I saw that. Nothing wrong with that for me, as I like reading about others impressions of places I have been. DMHNT was often about internal events, his emotions and feelings about the hardships and pleasures of a LD hike. He also pulled no punches about serious personal shortcomings which rarely happens outside old moldy attempts at humor. This made the work so much more unique and interesting. This is also why I love Liteshoes book "Ordinary Adventurer" although her personal shortcomings were, and as far as I know still are, fictional.

Mags
09-25-2009, 14:08
Personally, my favorite book on the AT (for a personal memoir) is ON THE BEATEN PATH by Robert Rubin. The Appalachian Trail as a pilgrimage. Both by going north on the trail and the mental one within.

My overall favorite book, though, is THE APPALACHIAN TRAIL READER

A collection on the geology, folklore, history and culture of the the AT and surrounding Appalachians. But also the writings about the Appalachian experience from the eloquent voices of Thoreau and Berry to the raw and passionate voices of everyday hikers.

My copy is very dog-eared.


More books then you ever knew existed can by found at:
http://www.booksforhikers.com/appalachian-trail/

lloyd528
09-27-2009, 18:12
I started this thread by asking about DMHNT by Rick Mckinney. I have now read both books, Dead Men and On the Beaten Path by Robert Rubin. I loved both and for very different reasons....for reasons stated by previous postings. I liked the concept of "pilgrimage" in Rubin's book a lot. Now I would like to know if anyone has written a book about a thru hike in spiritual terms...how the trail experience may have solidified one's faith, whatever faith that might be. I would be open to reccomendations....thanks for the input on "Dead Men".