The Emerald Mile: The Epic Story of the Fastest Ride in History Through the Heart of the Grand Canyon

Kevin Fedarko. Scribner, $30 (416p) ISBN 978-1-4391-5985-9
Fearlessness, and possibly foolishness, compelled Kenton Grua and a small crew to launch a refurbished dory, a flat-bottomed fishing boat, named Emerald Mile into the Colorado River "on the crest of [a] flood tide" late one night in the summer of 1983. Grua used the swollen river "as a kind of hydraulic slingshot" to pitch them as fast as possible from Lee's Ferry on one end of the canyon, to the Grand Wash Cliffs on the other. In this absorbing volume, writer and part-time river guide Fedarko provides an intimate look at Grua's motivations and accomplishments. Nicknamed "the Factor" because he "injected a uniquely wild-ass variable into the river equation," Grua was implacably stubborn and combative, but also intensely playful. More importantly, he had a genuine appreciation for "the grand whole of the [canyon]"—the river, the rim rock, and the trails in between. Grua's wild ride on the Colorado, how it mirrored his mercurial personality, is just one part of Fedarko's story; however, the river, which runs through seven states, and the canyon, rich in both geological and political history, prove to be the real protagonists. Eight page photo insert. Agent: Jennifer Joel, ICM. (May)
Reviewed on: 05/13/2013
Release date: 05/01/2013
Genre: Nonfiction
Compact Disc - 978-1-4815-0912-1
Compact Disc - 978-1-4815-0910-7
Compact Disc - 978-1-4815-0911-4
Open Ebook - 416 pages - 978-1-4767-3529-0
Paperback - 417 pages - 978-1-4391-5986-6
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