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In Wilderness: The Gateway To The Soul author Scott Stillman takes the reader to his favorite hiking destinations, most of them in the western US, to answer the questions of why wilderness and why it should be saved. His purpose is to get you, the reader, out into your closest wilderness area to be still and to contemplate.
Stillman hiked 24 designated wilderness areas in Utah, Oregon, Colorado, Wyoming, Idaho, Arizona, Nevada and California plus a national recreation area in Tennessee, alone most of the time, to describe the beauty, the stillness and solitude of these road less places.
Wilderness is a book to be read slowly more than once. The reader accompanies Stillman on his pilgrimage into canyons, forests, deserts and mountain tops in his quest for beauty and solitude. Some of his descriptions are poetic and others are about the trials of venturing into the wilderness alone: being lost, the heat and thirst, the wind and rain and cold and snow as well as the color and shape of nature. Often he questions why he is doing it and what he is searching for.After a night of camping in the Powderhorn Wilderness, Colorado, Stillman realizes why he is there: “I look around and see the world with a powerful new sense of compassion. A true empathy. We understand each other. A heartwarming love develops, not just inside of me, but all-encompassing of everything around me. I’m a visitor but welcome. We share the same space: the trees, the sun, the flowers, the water, the sky, the breeze. We all buzz with energy.”
Wilderness is an invitation to leave behind computers, phones, and the drone of machines, worries and insecurities to find peace. Even if you live in the eastern US there is such a place nearby.