Forest Under My Fingernails: Reflections and Encounters on the Long Trail

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Press:Ingram Pub Services Heron Dance Press; First Edition edition (March 1, 2006)
Author Name:Mclaughlin, Walt/ Maciver, Roderick (ILT)


Forest Under My Fingernails is a beautifully written book about a 267 mile, 33 day backpacking trip. 
At different times gently introspective, humorous, and thought-provoking, this book explores the changes we go through as we gradually immerse ourselves in the deep woods, and the different rhythms we experience there.
Walt's work is relatively unknown, but we regard him as one of the most eloquent nature authors and poets writing today.


Travel,United States,Vermont,Science & Math,Nature & Ecology,Nature Writing & Essays,Travel Writing

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Comment List (Total:12)

  •     A wonderful book to read before you go backpacking to grasp what might be expected on a long trip. It was packed with information about the interactions between people and...
  •     Personally I prefer writings that are more descriptive of what was seen along the way.
  •     Helpful book in preparing to hike the trail. Discriptive and entertaining. Truely enjoyable. Can't wait to hike it this summer with my daughter and sister!
  •     I read this book while hiking on the Long Trail, and it was a great companion for a rough part of the trail. McLaughlin's writing helped me focus my journey and go from mile-chugging to slowing down, really taking in the scenery and enjoying the journey immensely. I loved reading about places I had hiked through, and comparing my experience with the writer's. His approach at the beginning (fishing, napping, truly enjoying the trail) sadly gives way to a desire to do more miles and finish... maybe just for the sake of finishing? It's a very common experience on the trail, though, and McLaughlin captures the feelings perfectly.This is a great book if you are thinking about hiking in Vermont, or if you just enjoy reading about hiking.
  •     Excellent, love it. Great descriptions of the wilderness, nature, and the great outdoors and what he was going through during his hike. Recommended reading.
  •     I have not read a book that more accurately describes the long (medium)distance hiking experience better. In addition it is one of the best descriptions of the LT found.
  •     I very much enjoyed the metaphorical walk on the LT with Walt. I have done many back-country week long hikes and could easily relate to his appreciation of the solitude of the...
  •     Like taking a walk in the wood with a friend. Much better writing than I typically find when picking up this type of book. Will definitley be reading another of Mr. McLaughlin's books!
  •     I enjoyed McLaughlin's trek on the Long Trail through Vermont. His slow pace allows him to see the best that nature has to offer.
  •     I am preparing for a through hike on the Long Trail this fall. This is the first "journal-style" book I've read about the Long Trail, but I really enjoyed it.If I had any quibbles with it at all, I wish it was longer, and that the author had told us more about the flora and fauna he saw along the way, and about his experiences as a GMC member and Long Trail lore.This is absolutely not a gear list or a substitute for the GMC's Long Trail Guide, but it does give a wonderful sense of what its like to be on this trail. It also reminded me of several issues that need to be dealt with as I plan, like achy knees and uncertain water sources.
  •     Good read. Makes me want to hike the Long Trail. As a social person, I wanted to learn more from other people and characters he met on the trail, yet he seemed more intent from hiding from them then learning about them. I liked the little side info on each area he was in. I'll probably buy another book from this writer.
  •     As I stood in the book store, blankly staring at a shelf of self help books, I tried to remind myself that I did not want to attempt suicide again that day.

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