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4/30/2017 While updating the Hanson's Point Trail for the new edition of Hinterlands I noticed two errors in the previous edition. In the first sentence of the last full paragraph on page 147, "continues west along" should read "continues east along." Additionally, the GPS coordinates given for Hansons Point were actually for the campsite previous to the final overlook area and should read 17S 0268801 4188719. The latter mistake shouldn't cause any serious problems, but the former one could. Sorry.
2/21/2017 Change of Plans
As previously mentioned, I had been working on updates to both Red River Gorge guidebooks. Since I didn't want to stick retailers with a bunch of older editions, I had been letting stock disappear and had not reordered books. Well, so much for best laid plans of mice, guidebook authors, and men. My work was halted by the US Forest Service. They essentially closed the Red. Tunnel Ridge Road, Chimney Top Road, and other roads were gated. As luck would have it, I had completed research on Indian Staircase, Cloud Splitter, and a large part of regions that were still accessible. I needed on the very roads that were closed. (The only other time I've seen the Red shut down like that was when Congress couldn't agree on a funding bill, so I'm just going to assume that they shut it down because they knew I was working on updates.) I cannot describe hiking areas without access, so I said to hell with it and headed south.
Soooooo, the new editions are NOT on the way. I'm making the start of 2018 my goal for having both updated, although I naturally expect to have one ready to go before the other.
Red River Gorge Trail Guide
In the 1st and 2nd editions of the Red River Gorge Trail Guide I mistakenly referred to the Whistling Arch Trail as trail #224. It is actually #234, so you may want to mark this in your older copy. Seven years after publication this is the only typo or misprint I've discovered, or that has been brought to my attention, in those early editions! All credit goes to my proofreaders and editors. I've seen major publishing companies do unspeakably worse.
I can't say the same for my later edition. To expedite the third edition I did less editing and proofreading, so don't be surprised to
see more mistakes. I've already found several myself, but I'm gambling that updated information is more important
to hikers than corrected typos. One error is on page 135, in the trail directions
for the Pebble Beach Trail. "See map on page 141" should read, "See map on
page 143". On page 261, Highlights: should read "Beautiful stream/forest settings." You'll also find some misspellings because some idiot (me) forgot to run the spell checker, or perhaps, my "dynamic" spell checker wasn't working properly . . . like it isn't now.
Fire and subsequent erosion have made access to Indian Staircase somewhat easier than it was when Hinterlands was published. Follow directions in the book until you arrive at the small "obstacle," shown in the photo on page 161 and below, but rather than climbing the obstacle directly, move left to easier (less steep) terrain and zigag up ledges. It's less adventurous, but safer.
The Hanson's Point Trail has become an obstacle course. Recent fires have resulted in many fallen trees and a decline in hiking quality.
On page 288 (Wildcat Bonus Trail), the directions end with "map page 297." That should read "map page 298."
The Swift Camp Creek Overlook Trail has been obliterated by deadfall and will not be included in future editions.
In Hinterlands I mentioned that I'd frequently stayed at the Red River Gorge Campground and wrote about Jim Shade (the proprietor) and his wonderful dog Wolf. Sadly, Jim is no longer with us and the last I heard, Wolf's health had necessitated a move to the city, where I can't imagine him having as much fun as he did running wild in the Red. Things change, I'm afraid, whether we want them to or not. It's a reality that I'm forced to deal with more and more every day. As Phillip Roth noted, "Old age isn't a battle, old age is a massacre." Thanks Jim and Wolf for the memories. I think of you both often. Jim's son now manages the campground, I believe, but I haven't visited it lately.
A reader pointed out a mistake in Hinterlands. It's in the Eagle Point Buttress area. It's subtle, so I won't get into details, but let me know if you have any trouble navigating in the area. I still can't believe how few mistakes have been found in my books. It's not like I do this for a living, but I see tons of mistakes in books by people who do. Credit goes to my wife and other proofreaders.