A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail – Bryson and his friend Katz, unprepared and out of shape, decide to hike the 2,200 mile trail through the endless eastern woods of the United States. Bryson details their experiences along with the history of the trail. This hike is more than either can take. They start skipping sections of the trail. Katz and Bryson leave the trail for home. Bryson continues with some day long hikes, often commuting from his home. Katz returns in August and the two try one last abortive hike in Maine. The best parts of the book dealt with the unique culture of the long distance hikers. The book was funny in spots: Bryson dwells on his unnatural fear of black bears, which Katz makes fun of. They are awakened one dark night by a large animal drinking from a stream. Bryson is convinced it’s a bear…
I nervously threw a stick at the animal, and it didn’t move, whatever it was. A deer would have bolted. This thing just blinked once and kept staring. I reported this to Katz.
“Probably a buck. They’re not so timid. Try shouting at it.”
I cautiously shouted at it: “Hey! You there! Scat!”
The creature blinked again, singularly unmoved.
“You shout,” I said.
“Oh, you brute, go away, do !” Katz shouted in merciless imitation.
“Please withdraw at once, you horrid creature.”