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17 Down Under: 17 DOWN UNDER. "A celebration of moderate grade climbing in Victoria". 184 pages. 285 images. Father & son team, Steve & John Morris, embark on a journey to climb and photograph 50 of the best rock climbs in Victoria, grade 17 & under. Inc bookmark  $50.00
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Alone Across Australia
One mans trek across a continent.

Format Book  (Australian) Category Non-Fiction
Title Alone Across Australia  Pages 225 
Author Jon Muir  RRP $25.00 AUD 
Publisher Penguin Books  Reviews
Edition Softcover 2003  Ave Rating ***** (4.50 of 5)


User Comments

The price of $25 is a guess, as I have had the book quite a while, but not got around to reading it until recently.

Jon Muir had already summited Mt Everest, and trekked to the South Pole (amongst other adventurous things), prior to this undertaking.

As a document of the only feat of its kind to date, of crossing Australia unsupported, on foot, through some of its harshest and remotest regions, it stands alone as a testament to ingenuity and tenacity.

It is comprehensive in describing circumstances surrounding the event, in all its stages from leading up to it, during same, and post journal logs / equipment list.

The writing style is candidly forthright / honest, but I found the engagement for me, was more from the task undertaken than the writing style, which is a bit dry at times.

It consists of Jon's daily journal notes from the 128 day trek, and reflects his moods and thoughts at the time, as well as detailing some of the odd things he experienced or came across.
It is more than documenting the physicality and tactics of the undertaking though; as scattered throughout the writings (about 45 instances), were gems of insight into the character / makeup required, for a challenge this huge; regarding; mindset / will power, mental condition / appreciation, balance / focus, limits / adjustments, reflections / perspective.

All up very inspirational, as there was more than one occasion where he felt that what he was doing was harder than his summit day on Mt Everest.

I bought the book at the Blue Mtns Climbing Festival some years back, where Jon was a guest speaker. I heard him speak about his quest, and I saw his film footage taken on that mission-journey. By comparison, the book lacks some detail that came through in his speaking and film footage at that event, but is worth reading nevertheless, especially if the Adventure (with a capital A), genre of book is your thing.

Not long after completing his unsupported crossing of Australia, he sucessfully journeyed to the North Pole.


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