Far Appalachia: Following the New River North by Noah Adams

The New River is an anomaly in more ways than one.  Named the New, it is one of the oldest if not the oldest river in the United States.  It largely flows north, which is not entirely unique an occurrence, but is a rarity among comparable rivers.

In a style reminiscent of William Least Heat Moon’s Blue Highways, longtime NPR host Noah Adams comments on his travels along the length of this fascinating river from its origins in the North Carolina mountains northward through Virginia and West Virginia.   His is a trip not only of white water rafting, but also a bicycling trek and some slower passages by boat.  The characters he meets are interesting and quirky – they are white water guides, ex-miners, airplane pilots, and just plain farming folk who have lived by the New all their lives and are wise to its vagaries.

Far Appalachia is armchair traveling at its best – a quiet meditative book best read on a porch, preferably next to a river.

(William Hicks, Information Services)

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