Sunday, August 29, 2010

Over the Edge:Death In the Grand Canyon

A Book Review of this lengthy and well written book by authors Michael P. Ghiglieri and Thomas M. Myers would really take several postings to do it justice.

Three hundred ninety pages of gripping stories, statistical data, complete bibliography leave us with no doubt the authors have done their research.
Chapters include: Falls, Environmental Deaths, Flash Floods, Killer Colorado, Air Causalities, Freak Accidents, Suicide, and lastly, Murder.

I was amazed at some of the risks people took before their deaths: perching for photos, hiking with insufficient water, bushwhacking impossible terrain, disregarding flood warnings, swimming in swirling eddies. Also amazing were the seemingly benign circumstances and easily escaped dangers had the people paid attention.

The Epilogue sums it up quite well that as a people we have become so domesticated our adventures are sought out and not everyone who is ill prepared can be protected from them.

I highly recommend this book. At times the factual parts could bog you down, at times it reads like a Hollywood thriller. The charts at the end of each chapter summarize quite nicely the trends and highlights.
A very educational book as well, its lessons can be used in all survival situations. Be prepared, do not over estimate your abilities. Never disrespect or underestimate the wilderness or Mother Nature.

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