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Extreme Sleeps: Adventures of a Wild Camper Paperback – 1 Apr 2013
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'This book will let you in on some of the best locations in the British Isles and shares the secret techniques that can turn a grassy moorland or disused quarry into a presidential suite. Inspiring and enjoyable, Extreme Sleeps might just change your life.'(Leo Houlding, British climber, base jumper and adventurer)
'Phoebe Smith proves that you don't need to leave our own shores to have some right royal muddy adventures in the UK. Encounters with sheep and mishaps under canvas are just as much fun at home as they are anywhere in the world!'(Julia Bradbury, presenter)
'As Phoebe Smith reveals, Britain is blessed with wilderness - and you need no more than a tent and a misplaced sense of confidence to experience it.'(Simon Calder, travel writer and journalist)
'This is an inspiring and energetic read.'(The Great Outdoors Magazine)
'the book is inspiring if you're planning your first night alone in the wilderness, particularly if you're female'(Adventure Travel)
'It can be frightening and funny but always entertaining, and even if you don't fancy following in her footsteps you'll enjoy reading about the journey.'(Camping Magazine)
'She portrays vividly the magnification of simple experiences that can make wild camping so exciting, relaxing and invigorating'(TGO Magazine)
'Inspiring book'(Walk (The Ramblers' Association magazine))
'Phoebe Smith is a splendid writer and an inspiring traveller'(Bill Bryson)
'Smith combines self-deprecating humor and an overactive imagination to enliven her story… In addition, Smith takes time to educate readers on the culture and history of wild sleeping and the philosophy of people who would rather bypass formal campsites to discover Mother Nature’s wondrous bedroom décor.'(Booklist)
About the Author
Phoebe Smith is editor of Wanderlust, the UK’s best-loved adventure travel magazine. She also writes for The Guardian, Trail, Backpacker (USA), Country Walking, and Australia and New Zealand magazine and has appeared on the BBC talking about camping.
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The book was not without its pitfalls, though. Most irritating of all was Smith's obsession with peppering the story with supposedly humourous anecdotes. Many of them were clearly either massively exaggerated or completely contrived. Her passion for wild camping and eloquence in describing the wilder corners of the UK are strong enough to stand for themselves, without the distraction of probabaly fictionalised "a funny think happened to me" stories. In particular the "I heard a noise outside my tent, thought it was a murderer, hurriedly put on my clothes with comic effect, looked out my tent and it turned out only to be a sheep/horse/rabbit/cow" story was OK on its first telling but after the fourth or fifth incarnation became positively tiresome.
As the book is clearly designed to invoke a passion for wild camping it would also have been nice to have had some insight into the practicalities of it - the kit she took, practical mistakes she made, practical lessons learned.
Also there is nothing in the book about who Smith is - we know nothing of her working life, background, how she came to go camping etc. etc. - it would have been nice to have learned a little more about the person with whom we were sharing these adventures.
The book improved as the chapters progressed and Smith found herself going on more adventurous forays in the Lake District and Scottish highlands.
I was left with a real yearning to try wild camping myself. Who knows, one day I might just do it.
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Equally fictional are some of the 5-star reviews on here, clearly written by...Read more