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Short Way Up: A classic ride through Southern Africa - 5,000 solo miles on a 1950s Ariel Hardcover – 2 Jun 2011


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Haynes Publishing (2 Jun 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1844256855
  • ISBN-13: 978-1844256853
  • Product Dimensions: 16.5 x 3.2 x 24.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 476,269 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

About the Author

Steve Wilson is a leading classic motorcycle journalist and author of the definitive six-volume British Motorcycles since 1950. He also wrote Triumph Bonneville, in Haynes's 'Great Bikes' series, and his Down The Road, a collection of his best writings about classic motorcycles, became a cult classic. He contributes monthly to Real Classic and Classic Car Mart magazines.

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By CSW on 12 July 2011
I've always been a big fan of Steve Wilson's writing in books and classic bikes magazines so was very pleased when I saw "Short Way Up" when browsing on Amazon. I bought a copy, holed up for the weekend and read solidly. Couldn't put the book down. It's about every middle-aged biker's dream and nightmare. Blimey! What a journey - mechanical, geographical, personal - there's something of Eric Newby's Hindu Kush about it. A really great book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By George on 1 Aug 2011
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As a long-time enthusiast of books by Ewan & Charley, I was keen to get my hands on a copy of Steve Wilson's latest book. It did not disappoint!
Full of almost-catastrophic mechanical failures and mishaps, I thoroughly enjoyed finding out how each event ended and who helped him out!
Of course, this book may have lacked the 'trampled by elephant' or 'eaten by lions' drama that so plagues the more commercial projects of a similar nature, but I would much rather my money go towards this than 50 middle-aged men cycling from Hampshire to Paris on push-bikes.
A brave adventure for anyone. More brave for being on motorcycle and wonderfully candidly recorded.
Steve, a credit to you.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By GFP on 29 July 2011
A fascinating book and not what you expect: a biker who dares reveal himself and his frailties. Steve Wilson shows what travelling in Africa is really like: not tussling with lions or escaping from elephants, but dealing with slow, sweaty delays, breakdowns and bureaucracy. He writes from the heart and dares to talk about his personal life. Above all he shows his abiding interest in human beings who are treated with as much affection as the machines he loves so much.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By DR on 17 July 2011
Forget your corporate-sponsored, support vehicle-backed, trips through Africa - if you want a real tale of adversity and determination read Short Way Up, then buy yourself a classic British bike and dig out your passport.

This book, like so many of the great motorcycling stories, puts you on the bike with the author. And what a bike. It's refreshing to see that not everyone chooses the big BMW adventure bike, and a half-century old classic bike with a less than reliable track record is hardly an easy option. I'd be willing to bet that half the people who've ridden around the world have had less mechanical issues and a far easier time of it than the author and his Ariel did in those 5,000 miles.

As an inspirational story Short Way Up is unbeatable. As a taste of Africa it leaves you wanting more, and as a classic motorcycling tale you have to take your hat off to one determined man.
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As an avid reader of travel literature, particularly any involving motorcycles, this book was a total disappointment to me, and I couldn't in fact finish the book. Why? I found it full of the most mundane mechanical trivia and the journey itself, through what is undoubtedly a fascinating region, ended up sounding dull as dishwater. Sorry, but definitely the poorest piece of travel literature I have ever (attempted to) read.
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canot give a review as i have not red it. it;s a presant for my husband. i am shure he will be pleased with it.
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