"The question is not where did the traveller go? what places did he see?" Thoreau wrote, "but who was the traveller? how did he travel? how genuine an experience did he get?" When Thoreau stood on the flank of Maine's Mount Katahdin in 1846, he was one of only a handful who had ventured so far into wilderness for the simple purpose of seeing what was out there. This summer, thousands of tourists walking in thoreau's footsteps will climb the same mountain, stopping on the peak momentarily to pose for digital photos, consult GPS receivers, and talk on cell phones. In "North to Katahdin," Eric Pinder observes the American wilderness mob - hikers weighed down by packs, campers driving thousands of miles to see "nature," and climbers bagging peaks "because they're there" - and wonders, if Thoreau came for genuine experience, what does everyone come for now? Pinder tells stories - at times hilarious, reflective, and terrifying - of the Katahdin wilderness and the people who flock to it every summer. Paperback, 178 pages.