Ramble On: A History of Hiking

How did hiking evolve from the upper-class European sport of alpinism and the publication of an English travel guide into an activity that now has millions of participants all over the world? Who built the thousands of miles of trails that now crisscross America? What did early hikers wear, and what were some of the key inventions and innovations that led to our modern array of hiking gear and apparel? How was information about hiking, trails and gear disseminated in the early years? And what were some of the reasons why people hiked, and how have those changed over time?

For answers to those questions, and more, check out Ramble On: A History of Hiking, by Jeff Doran, a name many Smokies hikers should be familiar with. This is the first broad historical overview of hiking in one volume. Among the variety of topics discussed about the early years of hiking, the book also includes anecdotal stories of trail development in some of our oldest and most iconic national parks.

This book chronicles hiking’s roots in alpinism and mountaineering, the societal trends that fostered its growth, some of the early hikers from the nineteenth century, the first trails built specifically for recreational hiking, the formation of the first hiking clubs, as well as the evolution of hiking gear and apparel.

This book also takes a look at some of the issues that currently impact hikers and trails, such as overcrowding and social media, and takes a peek into the future on how some of these trends could unfold.

You can pick up a copy here…

 

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