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  • Published: 7 June 2012
  • ISBN: 9781409051909
  • Imprint: Preface Digital
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 320

The Green Road Into The Trees


Award-winning British travel writer Hugh Thomson explores the most exotic and foreign country of them all - his own.


In the past, Hugh Thomson has written acclaimed books about Peru, Mexico and the Indian Himalaya. Now he returns to the most exotic and foreign country of them all - his own.

Walking right across England, along ancient trackways and green grass roads, Hugh explores the way the country was and the way it is today: the legends, literature and natural world that define us, and the undercurrent of regret running throughout our history; what he calls 'the unicorn disappearing into the trees'.

From coast-to-coast and through the heart of the countryside, he shows how older,forgotten cultures like the Celts, Saxons and Vikings lie much closer to the surface than we may think. It is a journey enriched and partly told by the characters he meets along the way. By taking it, Hugh casts unexpected light - and humour - on the way we live now.

  • Published: 7 June 2012
  • ISBN: 9781409051909
  • Imprint: Preface Digital
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 320

About the author

Hugh Thomson

Hugh Thomson’s travel books include The White Rock: An Exploration of the Inca Heartland and Cochineal Red, both about Peru, as well as Nanda Devi, a journey to a usually inaccessible part of the Himalaya. His memoir Tequila Oil: Getting Lost in Mexico was serialised by BBC Radio 4.

Hugh has led many research expeditions to Peru and is one of Britain's leading explorers of Inca settlements. He has also taken filming expeditions to Mount Kilimanjaro, Bhutan, Afghanistan and the Mexican Sierra Madre.

‘Thomson belongs to a rare species of explorer. He is a writer who explores and not an explorer who writes. And it is Thomson’s extreme humility in the face of both danger and extraordinary success that places him in the same tradition as Eric Newby.’ Geographical.

For The Green Road into the Trees, he returned to Britain to write about his own country. It won the inaugural Wainwright Prize for Nature and Travel Writing.

For the sequel, One Man and a Mule, Hugh decided to have ‘a South American adventure in England’ by taking a mule as a pack animal across the North.

'Everywhere Thomson goes, he finds good stories to tell.' New York Times Book Review


Also by Hugh Thomson

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Praise for The Green Road Into The Trees

He is an illuminating companion…frequently comic, his voice is original and engaging; proof that it is the walker, not the path, that counts.


An immensely enjoyable book: curious, articulate, intellectually playful and savagely candid.

The Spectator

He records more than impressions: there are fascinating excursions into neglected areas of British history, and conversations with hippies, travellers and farmers, which makes Mr Thomson’s journey a joy to follow.

Country Life

Often funny and always enlightening

Candida Lycett Green, Countryfile

I would love to walk with Thomson

John Sutherland, Financial Times

Thomson undertakes a 400-mile journey coast-to-coast along drover paths, bramble-filled ditches and half-forgotten tracks, discovering remnants of forgotten cultures in this celebration of old England and its heritage.

Daily Mail

Thomson provides a solid sense of place and the reader gets to know the route and its distinctive features.

Times Literary Supplement

This sparky account of a walk from Dorset to Norfolk had this reader nodding about the "strikingly neurotic behaviour… that often lies beneath the English skin" in the characters of Wind in the Willows, applauding the recognition that "Empire didn't suit us. It brought out the bossy, inflexible, hierarchical side" and whooping at Thomson's use of tie and clipboard to enter the officially imposed sanctum sanctorum of Stonehenge.


Gently told, with rich humour and an enjoyable sense of inquiry.

The Times

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