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on 9 August 2012
Colin Mortlock's book is a staple of outdoor learning and sets out his intoxicating and attractive philosophy in an articulate and pretty thorough way. It is a book from which many can (and indeed do ...) learn much.

So why only the four stars?

Because, for me, there's just a tinge of wild-eyed fanatic about it... perhaps I am older than most readers and came to the book after some twenty years working in outdoor learning, rather than having it as a set book at college, but it seems to be a book which (at best) ignores the realities of daily living which apply to most of us, most of the time. Many don't actually have an 'adventure alternative' and must keep on looking after children, elderly relatives, the mortgage etc. rather than escaping into the wild.

It's a bit like the rather superior attitude that a few Norwegians take towards their 'frluftsliv' culture. It is perhaps the fact that their country is afloat on a sea of oil that allows such escape into the fresh air. For Mortlock, it is the existence of an advanced technological society that enables him to adventure in the wilderness ...

So, not to say this is not a good book. It is. But, much as we'd like to, we can't all be Colin Mortlock. For some, adventure is (sadly) not an alternative...
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on 24 November 1999
Mortlock's philosophy.....blah, blah, blah.... the man believes that trees have feelings...fair enough but rocks!!!! I do not mind , each to their own and all that. However Mr Mortlock, the misanthropist, has a superb view on outdoor education and life and has written these well founded opinions up in this book. To achieve a good fulfilled life you generally have to balance an awareness, love and respect between and for: The Environment, Others and Yourself. Do this and you are onto a winner!!!!
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