In the Wild in a Wired Age
by Ted Kerasote
Publication date: 2004
hardcover | 160 pages
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Who hasn't wanted to get away from cell phones, e-mail, roads, and traffic? And what better place to escape our wired world than the far northwestern corner of Canada's northwest territories and a river that flows through uninhabited country, 400 miles to the Arctic Ocean. But what if your canoeing partner brings along a satellite phone to use in case of an emergency? And, struck by the novelty of anywhere-on-earth communication, he proceeds to use the phone to check in with his law office, his wife, kids, sisters, father, and friends?
Ted Kerasote describes just such a situation as he journeys down the Horton River through the largest, ice-free, roadless area left on Earth, a stunning wilderness of grizzly bears, caribou, and migrating birds. Between navigating rapids, slipping around musk ox and grizzlies, and being pinned down by Arctic storms, the two friends prod each other into a finer understanding of love, marriage, parenting, and the meaning of solitude in an increasingly wired world.
Contrasting his own experiences with those of the region's earliest explorers — Sir John Franklin and Vilhjalmur Stefansson — Kerasote provides a compelling and humorous take on how travelers from any age adjust to being away from their civilizations and how getting "out there" has inevitably changed but has also remained the same — especially if you shut off the phone.
"Out There does a masterful job of debating the dichotomy of adventure travel in a wired world."
"Out There is far, far more than a macho 'there-we-were' adventure story. It's a sly, funny, wise look at a world beyond the walls that we erect to keep ourselves safe from the wilderness and to keep the wilderness safe from us. Ted Kerasote is a fine literary companion—poetic, honest and observant."
"Kerasote has thought deeply about the meaning of remoteness and solitude in an age strangling from its cyberwires."