Arts & Leisure

Book review: Skiing with Henry Knox — by Sam Brakeley

(Islandport Press)
Vermont writer and wilderness professional Sam Brakeley (he’s an EMT, former ski patroller, search and rescue team member, trail builder, etc.) doesn’t actually ski with Henry Knox. In fact, it’s been almost 250 years since General Knox traversed the winter lands between Fort Ticonderoga and Boston to deliver artillery to the revolutionary forces fighting the British in a pivotal period in the Revolutionary War. Brakeley, faced with a pivotal moment in his own life, wanted an experience akin to that treacherous, lengthy winter journey, so he set out to ski the Catamount Trail, a 300-mile, winter-use trail open to the public for skiing and snowshoeing, on his own. Toggling back and forth between the historical feat by Henry Knox and his own description of grueling miles skied, Brakeley focuses on the similarities between his venture and Knox’s. Both are propelled by the great motivator, love. Both are compelled to complete their missions even if it means they will be away from the ones they love. Nature and geography meet heart and emotion in this wonderfully rich and well-told tale and Brakeley’s love for and knowledge about the Vermont woods is enriched by the historical underpinnings of Knox’s strategic American Revolution maneuver.
— Reviewed by Jenny Lyons of The Vermont Book Shop in Middlebury.

 

9 Historically Vermont books
The Volunteer, by Jack Fairweather
A History of Ripton, Vermont, Volume I, by Charles Billings
Lost Ski Areas of Southern Vermont, by Jeremy K. Davis
Strong Ground Mount Independence & The American Revolution, by David Wickman
Secrets of Mount Philo, by Judy Chaves
Going Up the Country, by Yvonne Daley
Someone’s Darling Slumbers Here, by Bernard W. Noble
Those Turbulent Sons of Freedom, by Christopher Wren
The Winter Army, by Maurice Isserman

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