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jeffrey armbruster
(book) - M

Locale: Northern California
PCT movie with Reese Witherspoon coming out" on 07/13/2014 13:25:16 MDT Print View

I'm a bookseller and so read Wild when it came out in an advance reader's edition. It wasn't what I expected. In the end I thought, not bad but it'll never sell. Shows what I know.

Actually I give Strayed props for copping to her own terrible behavior towards other people.

Matthew H
(vision-quest) - F - M

Locale: Portland, Oregon
Bummer. on 07/14/2014 03:15:26 MDT Print View

This is a bummer. I was planning on hiking the PCT in 2016. I had heard about the book but didn't realize how big it was, and I'm sure a mainstream movie will send hoards of people to the PCT in the coming years.. so much for escaping the hustle and bustle!

Ian B.
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: Bummer. on 07/14/2014 09:08:14 MDT Print View

I have another seven years until I can through hike the pct so hopefully the surge from Wild will be done by then. I suspect the realities of the trail will thin the flakes from the heard.

Greg Mihalik
(greg23) - M

Locale: Colorado
Re: Re: Bummer. on 07/14/2014 09:13:08 MDT Print View

If you are NOBO you'll pass, be passed, and leapfrog with only a few.

If you are SOBO you'll see them all.

Where you camp is up to you.


I hike the JMT NOBO and say Hi&Bye to the SOBOs in less than 5 seconds ;-)
Solitude is not an issue.

Edited by greg23 on 07/14/2014 09:21:11 MDT.

Piper S.
(sbhikes) - F

Locale: Santa Barbara (Name: Diane)
Who should play Carrot on 07/14/2014 09:48:29 MDT Print View

How about Hillary Swank to play Carrot? You need a woman who can look like a 15-year-old boy. I think she could do it.

Bob Shaver
(rshaver) - F

Locale: West
read it, hiked it, liked it on 07/14/2014 13:15:43 MDT Print View

I hiked the JMT, which Strayed did not. I read her book, I read my hiking journal of my JMT trip. I did way less drugs than her, actually hiked the JMT, and climbed a lot more peaks than her, but her story and writing are a lot better than my boring trip report. The book is 70% personal history, 30% hiking, and the hiking part involves sleeping around and doing drugs. But its interesting, I enjoyed it, and the general public can read an interesting story and see a peek into a world they never would know existed otherwise. I doubt that many non-hikers get inspired to do the PCT, but some hikers who have thought about it might be inspired to finally do it. I'm good with that. They are all voters and advocates. I'll definitely go see the movie.

Bob

Ken Thompson
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: Behind the Redwood Curtain
Re: Who should play Carrot on 07/14/2014 14:59:05 MDT Print View

Swank was born in '74, too old. Carrot could play herself.

Marko Botsaris
(millonas) - F - MLife

Locale: Santa Cruz Mountains, CA
Re: Re: Who should play Carrot on 07/14/2014 15:49:25 MDT Print View

Seriously, like I said, Zoe Kazan - same age, plus with short hair could look like a boy. :-) Yes, I am a ZK fanboy.

David Thomas
(DavidinKenai) - MLife

Locale: North Woods. Far North.
Re: read it, hiked it, liked it on 07/14/2014 16:36:00 MDT Print View

> "I doubt that many non-hikers get inspired to do the PCT"

Circa 1979, I was going up Whitney out of Whitney Portal and there was a family strewn all over the trail. We passed Mom and a teenager around 11,000, another teenagers in another mile and found Dad draped over a rock at 12,000 gasping for breath (and wondering, "why is it so hard to breath up here?" between drags on his cigarette). Apparently, Dad had been watching "America's Most Amazing. . .something" from his couch in LA, saw a story about a 91-year-old grandmother who hiked Whitney each (with a support party) and declared, "We're going to do that next year." They had all the regulation K-mart gear: the bright orange pack with the glued-together pack frame, the Fiberfill bags with the duck-printed flannel lining, the Boy Scout mess kits, and the blanket-covered canteens.

Maybe the permit-issuers will start screening for experience? GCNP asks lot of info for off-corridor overnights (arguably with good reason). The Iditarod requires you to have finished a 1,049-mile Iditarod previously or to have raced 500 miles already that year. More alarming would be "minimum gear requirements" like the 1890's Chilkoot Trail, the Iditarod, or climbing Denali.

>"They are all voters and advocates."

+1. Even if they don't hike, they can be voters and advocates. Next week, I'll go into Gates of the Arctic NP with BPL's much more studly Manfred & Sons party. I'm among maybe 1% of Alaskans who have been and perhaps 1 in 10,000 Americans. Yet, the CONCEPT of remote wilderness has enough support to have created and maintained a NP there, despite the dig-it/log-it/drill-it crowd.

Ken Thompson
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: Behind the Redwood Curtain
Re: read it, hiked it, liked it on 07/14/2014 16:39:15 MDT Print View

"Next week, I'll go into Gates of the Arctic NP with BPL's much more studly Manfred & Sons party."

Screwed Wild, that's a trip report I'll be waiting for.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: read it, hiked it, liked it on 07/14/2014 16:42:19 MDT Print View

">"They are all voters and advocates."

+1. Even if they don't hike, they can be voters and advocates."

But that's a double edged sword. They may vote to keep the woods, but they won't necessarily vote to keep the wilderness - instead voting for cell towers and nice cabins every so many miles to sleep in and kiosks of some sort to buy burgers along the way.

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
Re: Re: Who should play Carrot on 07/14/2014 16:56:05 MDT Print View

"Swank was born in '74, too old. Carrot could play herself."

Eight years difference. That is nothing in Hollywood.

Paul Magnanti
(PaulMags) - MLife

Locale: People's Republic of Boulder
PCT movie with Reese Witherspoon coming out on 07/14/2014 18:42:29 MDT Print View

Because of the commentary on this, many (!) other websites and even Facebook, wrote my own nickel's worth of thoughts:
http://www.pmags.com/that-book-cheryl-strayeds-wild

I am lazy and putting it up in one place. :D

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
pmags on 07/14/2014 19:55:03 MDT Print View

I can't pretend to know why anybody else dislikes the book. I know that I read it pre-Oprah and didn't like it.

You can claim it isn't "about" the PCT, but it is set there, covers many aspects of the trail, and uses the PCT in the tagline on the cover. Read the description on the website. It sure puts itself out there as a journey with the PCT as the backdrop. Considering the numerous books "about" the PCT I have read, I'd say most are like Wild. They are about the people with the PCT as the setting. It could be the CDT, AT, or another trail. But considering the limited number of books on the PCT, any book that is set on it, can reasonably be considered "about" it in my humble opinion.

Any way, back to my view. I didn't care for it. I didn't like her. Her "journey" didn't seem to heal or strengthen her. At the end, I was left with the same impression of a selfish short-sighted woman that I started with. I complained about the book after reading it long before it could be considered a "backlash" since nobody else had read it. I just feel it is a poor book.

Ian B.
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: pmags on 07/14/2014 20:39:46 MDT Print View

My experience has been that some of the best stories come from people who behave uncoventially or experienced something that didn't go according to plan. Case in point, no one talks about all of the SF teams that did things right during Desert Storm. They talk/write about Bulldog's team and how they were compromised or Bravo Two Zero's hellaciously long e and e and eventual capture.

Regarding Pmag's article, I think calling the critics (not by Paul), mysogynistic, is a bit weak but likewise, calling Ms Strayed a nymphomaniac is likewise cheap.

In her own words, she fully admits that she has a male-like sexual appetite. Why is that worthy of criticism? I realize the hiking community comes from all walks of life but the puritans are free to watch Veggie Tales instead of reading this book.

I just got around to watching Walkumentary last week. POD recognized another triple Crowner's trail tail accomplish!ent when awarding him his crown. Don't see anyone slut shameing him.

I agree with the three star rating. Not a great book but not horrible either. Some light reading that I categorize under brain candy.

Paul Magnanti
(PaulMags) - MLife

Locale: People's Republic of Boulder
PCT movie with Reese Witherspoon coming out on 07/14/2014 20:43:01 MDT Print View

***"It sure puts itself out there as a journey with the PCT as the backdrop"

No kidding. That's what I said. Notice, you too, said a BACKDROP. :)

The sub-line is "From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail".

Now that I think about it, I am very disappointed in the movie Casablanca. Nothing about the culture of north Africa...it only featured the city as a BACKDROP to the story. Awful movie.... ;)



***" any book that is set on it, can reasonably be considered "about" it in my humble opinion."

That's a rather broad brush you are painting with there sir.

One Tom Clancy book mentions the Appalachian Trail, (I frankly forget which)..Just saying.

***" I just feel it is a poor book."

And that is perfectly fine. I give it a "C" myself. So why do you feel it is a poor book? Is it because you didn't like her? The writing style? Not what you anticipated? Honestly curious.

***"I complained about the book after reading it long before it could be considered a "backlash" since nobody else had read it"

Good for you. Do you read the website Pitchfork on a regular basis and/or work in record store by any chance? :D

Edited by PaulMags on 07/14/2014 20:46:41 MDT.

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
Re: PCT movie with Reese Witherspoon coming out on 07/14/2014 21:48:28 MDT Print View

----"No kidding. That's what I said. Notice, you too, said a BACKDROP. :)

Now that I think about it, I am very disappointed in the movie Casablanca. Nothing about the culture of north Africa...it only featured the city as a BACKDROP to the story. Awful movie.... ;)"

I'm saying that there is enough related to the PCT it is a "Pct Book". You might be right that no backlash would have occurred if the setting was different. Your Casablanca example is a stretch though. I'm going by her own website. And I don't remember Casablanca being billed as a story about Africa. Tom Clancy mentioning the AT surely doesn't qualify.

----"And that is perfectly fine. I give it a "C" myself. So why do you feel it is a poor book? Is it because you didn't like her? The writing style? Not what you anticipated? Honestly curious."

In large part, it is probably because I dislike the main character. She is dislikable. I don't mind flaws, but as I have previously mentioned, she has the same issues post hike. I didn't see any character growth. She recognizes her mistakes in her personal life, and repeats them. She really seems to be a crappy person. Her husband sticks by her and she treats him like crap again....after seemingly realizing she blew it.

She doesn't learn from her on trail experiences in what I would anticipate is a normal time frame. I don't like childish actions. She throws a boot away since she lost one? She doesn't lighten up despite knowing she needs to? When your pain is self inflicted, I have a hard time being sympathetic.


I thought the writing was pedestrian. But this is relatively normal for hiking books. I thought she went overboard with her writing. Shattered. You can't just say tired and depressed? I thought the language didn't flow and she tried too hard writing. I'm sure I had more complaints, but I ready it 2 years ago. I just left feeling bummed. I hope everybook I read it great. I went in with no expectations, it was just another PCT book I ordered to read in my free time. I have read all kinds of PCT books. Stories about the people, about the trail, about the internal journey. I don't have a favorite. Just didn't care for this book. I'd go 2/5.

-----"Good for you. Do you read the website Pitchfork on a regular basis and/or work in record store by any chance? :D"

Not at all! I'm just saying my reaction was not based on anything other than the actual writing. This feeds into your last reason I think. I have read better books. Even of the same kind of "journey".

I will admit my anti Wild book is stronger when confronted with fans of the book. The same way I get annoyed by Harry Potter love. I enjoyed the books, but adults thinking they are great writing is annoying... ;)

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
discussion on 07/14/2014 21:50:18 MDT Print View

But I also love discussing books and debating their merits. I don't regret reading Wild. I do regret giving her money though. She seems to play up her tragedies and to me is a sorry individual. And now she has my money....

Reading and hiking are two passions of mine!

Ian B.
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: discussion on 07/14/2014 22:27:37 MDT Print View

It's been over a year since I read the book. I thought the man she's married to now is different than the one she divorced in the book. I don't keep up with her personal life but was there an article or something indicating that she's fooling around on him? I guess I thought she got off the dope after the hike. I don't know her and what she does with her personal life is none of my business but the story is supposed to be about how the trail helped her transform her life. There's much less of a story here if that didn't happen.

Matthew H
(vision-quest) - F - M

Locale: Portland, Oregon
Re: Re: Re: Bummer. on 07/14/2014 22:43:18 MDT Print View

Glad to hear you don't think the peace and quiet it ruined too much! I hope it's the same in a couple of years.