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INTO THE
CARPATHIANS

"The Carpathian Mountains—legendary land of Gothic castles, eerie accents, and the depredations of vampires and werewolves. But what are the Carpathian Mountains really like? Do Western readers know what really lurks in the dense forests blanketing the steep mountain slopes? (The most significant populations of wild animals remaining in Europe west of Russia.) Do they know what survives in the scenic valleys and on the lofty meadows? (The “old life” of rural Europe.) Do they know what diverse forms the craggy ridges have given to the many cultures and nations of Central and Eastern Europe, and to human imaginations the world over? (Too varied to summarize on a cover.) Do they know how it feels to explore the landscape’s challenging contours? (Invigorating, rewarding, exasperating, enlightening...) Enter Into the Carpathians to discover a beautiful and enchanting world of adventure, history, mystery, and more!"
Into the Carpathians cover Into the Carpathains Part 2 cover
A compelling chronicle of a hiking and wildlife research expedition along the length of the Carpathian Mountains, from Romania to Poland, some 800 miles as the crow flies. On the trail of wolves, we are led deep into the dark forests, misty hills, and intriguing history of this fabled landscape, where encounters with wolves, bears, and lynx; werewolves, vampires, and witches; lumberjacks, shepherds, and recluses; poets, tyrants, and saints; deities, demons, and sirens; and such imposing historical figures as Attila the Hun, Vlad the Impaler, Volodymyr the Great, Marcus Aurelius, Prince Svatopluk, Stephen the First, Bolesław the Brave, and Jan Sobieski provide broad insight into the natural, historical, and mythological forces that have shaped, and continue to shape, the cultures, nations, and psyches along the way. Beautiful color photographs also emblaze this memorable trek.
Alan E. Sparks is the award-winning author of Dreaming of Wolves and Into the Carpathians, and has written articles about wolves for International Wolf Magazine and other publications. As a teacher of English as a second language, commercial actor, and web designer — and as an avid walker, hiker, backcountry skier, animal tracker, and student of history and culture — he has lived, worked, and trekked extensively in the Carpathian Mountain region of Central and Eastern Europe.