Alaska Wilderness, by Robert Marshall. Edited, with introductions by George Marshall, Forward by A. Starker Leoplold. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1970. 173 pages, 30 illustrations, 6 maps. Price $6.95.
There are many people who develop an overwhelming passion for the lives they lead. The exception in society, however, is the person who has the ability to write about such feelings. Robert Marshall had that passion for his explorations and tells a lovely tale about them.
Reading this book one feels that he is right with Marshall as he explores vast tracts of the central Brooks Range. The picture is further enhanced by the author’s bountiful knowledge of the flora, fauna and geology of the arctic. Six maps and thirty fine photographs complement the book.
Marshall at the end gives air to his philosophy. His attempt to climb the highest peak of the area was halted because of technical inabilities. He completely placed the disappointment of this to one side, then continued to live in the moments of the next climb. The peak moments or highs that were not achieved on the first climb were then gained on the second lesser summit.
The introduction to this second edition (formerly called Arctic Wilderness) falls short of reality by its uncompromising plea for the preservation of wilderness.