Sunday, 7 August 2011

Quick Book Review - The Abels Volume Two

This book has finally been published. I've been waiting about 12 years since I bought the first one, but it's 15 since that was published. Anyway, it is terrific, and worth every penny, especially when you're lucky and catch Fullers on a "20% off everything"day!
They've put a series of articles about Tasmanian mountains in the front, then there's a good article about each Abel, mostly more substantial than the articles in the first volume, and some additions and changes to articles from the first volume. The photos are really well chosen, and all-in-all a lot of work has gone into this. Most heartening for me is the recognition of Sharlands Peak as an actual Abel, no doubt as a result of my extensive campaign for this status...;-)

I strongly expect that the Parks and Wildlife service have attempted to keep this book unpublished. It provides a good number of walk descriptions which are not easily obtainable elsewhere, including that for Nevada Peak which I provide on email request. (More importantly for that walk, it provides road directions for navigating the bewildering array of forestry roads out behind Lonnavale.) P&W have put quite a lot of effort in past years into stopping the publication of walk descriptions for walks that were rated as 4 or 5 (as I recall) under their track rating scheme. Many of the walks in this book would be rated as such. On balance, while I might personally like to hide Nevada Peak to protect its fragile alpine plateau, it's not possible to stop the publication of walk descriptions. Probably the answer is that we need to manage all these places to maximise both the capacity for people to visit them and their capacity to withstand that.

Nevertheless, the book is great, and should stimulate some expeditions with its enthusiastic and evocative descriptions of such wonderful places. $39.95 at Fullers Bookshop, Hobart, and other sellers of Tasmaniana.

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