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Preview — The Cactus Eaters by Dan White
The Cactus Eaters: How I Lost My Mind—and Almost Found Myself—on the Pacific Crest Trail
During a lull in his journalism career, Dan White became obsessed with hiking the Pacific Crest Trail, a 2,650-mile trek that starts at the southern tip of California and runs north all the way to the Canadian border. (This is the same trail that Cheryl Strayed wrote about in her bestselling book, Wild.) Dan is thrilled that his girlfri ...more
The part that rings the most true is the ambiguity when it is all over. There are books out there that, after the Great Feat is complete, the scales fall from one's eyes and ...more
So if you could handle reading about that little caper without flinging your computer ...more
He claims to have grown up in California and had a guidebo ...more
Enter Dan White’s book “The Cactus Eaters.” Without a doubt this is one of the best-written, funniest, and most thought-provoking accounts of a long-distance hike I’ve ever read. It outpaces and outclasses other dry accounts of P ...more
It's almost un ...more
I loved Part One, which is roughly the first three-quarters or so of the book, during which Dan and Allison make their way through most of the very long state of California and leave the trail in Ashland, ...more
It's a a bit difficult to describe the slightly ...more
“The Pacific Crest Trail stretches from Mexico to Canada, a distance of 2,650 grueling, sun-scorched, bear-infested miles. When Dan White and his girlfriend announced their intention to hike it, Dan's parents—among others—thought they were nuts. How could two people who'd never even shared an apartment together survive six months in the desert with little more than a two-person tent and some trail mix? But when these addled adventurers, dubbed "the Lois and ...more
In The Cactus Eaters, Dan White chronicles his often anything but smooth, unlucky trip. On a whim he and his then girlfriend dec ...more
Traversing broiling deserts, snowy mountain passes and dank rain forests on its crooked way from Mexico to Canada, the Pacific Coast Trail is an epic challenge for die-hard backpackers. White and his girlfriend, Melissa, set out, late in the season and bereft of experience, to tread all 2,650 miles of it, leaving behind lousy reporting jobs and hoping to find self-definition and a deepened relationship. (They call their trek the Lois and Clark Expedition.) Hilarious green...more
I loved the whole first part, and was actually crying by the end of the second. I think I see too much of myself in the author, what he did, and how his relationship with Allison went. I'm a bit of a mess right now.
p.25: "In the early stage of my infatuation with this epic western journey, it never occured to me that I might be falling in love not with a trail but with a vision of it... ...more