Has anyone read this? It was recommended to me by a friend, who uses it more as a reference tool and backpacking encyclopedia.
I know it's now in its third edition... and that says a lot about a book's popularity!
I've got a copy, it is indeed a reference of some considerable detail.
The fourth edition came out last year, Paddy.
Beth is right about it, but you should be aware that it's aimed at American backpackers, so not always applicable to Uk conditions and brands.
I thought it was (is) a very good book
It's actually now in its 4th edition (published Oct 2011). I've got the first edition, and yes, it's a good book. The actual gear referenced will obviously go out of date (mine's almost a museum piece in that regard, but obviously the new edition will be relevant for a while), but the principles around gear choice and use remain valid, and Chris has a wealth of backpacking experience to pass on.
Edit: I don't believe it's aimed at American backpackers. Chris has backpacked a lot of long US routes, but also a lot in the UK and Europe. Some aspects of the advice will apply more to some locations, but most of it is pretty universal.
I stand corrected... 4th edition... which says even more about its popularity!
Ah yes I was going to mention the Americanism of it, he uses American rather than British English spellings and words, but as Matt says the advice is pretty universal. Ive done a fair bit of walking, even before buying it last year sometime, and still found many a good gem in it.
Is there anything specific the OP wanted to know about it?
I wonder if the "Americanism" has crept in over later editions to increase the potential market for the book. It certainly wasn't present in the first edition (although even then, some American gear was). I've just checked my copy and it all looks very UK English - then again, it was published in 1991 (entitled "Ye Backpacker's Handbooke" )
Ah... a 2012 Google Books preview...
Published by McGraw Hill, one of America's leading educational publishers. I guess that means they're entitled to use American spellings!
There is a growing tendency to demand 'Americanisation' of spelling by publishers, even UK publishers. I've written stuff in UK English and had it back from editors Americanised, even for publishers like Blackwells and Cambridge University Press, because of the international audience.
Also a lot of computer publishing systems were developed for the massive US market, so spellchecks all tend to use American English.
I was just looking for a good backpacking book
If you read it you will get loads of Info on backpacking.
OK, the different versions recommend different gear. Forget that, it's the basics of the rest of the book that has the Info. that doesn't change very much, if at all.
Very good book, informative and well written.
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