Tuesday, December 14, 2010

In The Shadow of Denali-final review

I finished the book, and my final take is if you're into mountain, outdoor skills, Alaska, or survival stories, its a good read.
At times the author seems to whine a little, especially in chapters 7 and 8, telling how his climbing buddies left him behind, his broken bones and exclusions.
In the last chapter we get a taste of rescue operations from the rangers point of view. Jon Waterman, having served in this role for many years, tells of climbers going up unprepared and when things go a bit wrong, or they break a minor bone call in for rescue.
Now, I'm not sure if the taxpayer still foots the bill for these harrowing acts of courage, but Jon quotes some figures that are astounding when he worked in the late 70's.
He also is obviously critical of the apathetic attitudes, lack of gratitude and self sufficiency.
I have to agree with the author on our need for self sufficiency.
If you're going into the wild, on an adventure, or even just driving down the road, bring some stuff and learn some skills. Plan on surviving every ordeal on your own.
In the Shadow has its heroes and villains. Has its survivors and wimps.

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