Lodestar Books (45)

Swin Swale & Swatchway

ISBN: 9781907206306

Author: H. Lewis Jones    Publisher: Lodestar Books

The tide made up very fast, and soon we weighed and started for Havengore over the sands, but the sight of a horse and cart crossing the entrance of the creek s...


The tide made up very fast, and soon we weighed and started for Havengore over the sands, but the sight of a horse and cart crossing the entrance of the creek shewed us that we were too soon to get in; we therefore brought up again, and by-and-bye one of the light barges made a start and stood in under foresail and topsail. . . . We weighed anchor, having about four feet of water, where we were on the flat to windward of the creek, and bearing up we ran down to the beacons, sounding as we went with the boat-hook, ready to run her off if the water shoaled too much, and standing by to flatten in the sheets as soon as the water deepened, and we reached the creek. The old barge had got into the channel between the beacons all right, but having little way on, and no mainsail set, she was all the time sagging to leeward, and at last she stuck fast on the lee side of the channel, just on the point of the bend. Published in 1892 in a small and now scarce edition, Swin, Swale & Swatchway pre-dates and inspires both Maurice Griffiths and Francis B. Cooke in giving us the sailor’s experience of London’s doorstep wilderness, the Thames Estuary, and the boats and characters inhabiting it in late Victorian times. These charming adventures and human encounters have an engaging immediacy about them, and are enhanced by the author’s many photographs, which have weathered the years well to provide a priceless glimpse of a perhaps familiar territory, but in a time long gone from us. Our small hardcover edition of 2011 sold out rapidly, and we are now delighted to make this sought-after book available in our affordable, high-quality softcover format. There is a cracking video review by Dylan (Keep Turning Left) Winter, of our original hardcover edition.


Bind: paperback


Pages: 144


Dimensions: 156 x 216 mm


Publication Date: 12-05-2014


$36.00
Sail and Oar

ISBN: 9781907206238

Author: Ernest Dade    Publisher: Lodestar Books

No maritime library will be complete without a copy of this volume on its shelves, for the Yorkshire fishing coble and the Yorkshire smack of the past century w...


No maritime library will be complete without a copy of this volume on its shelves, for the Yorkshire fishing coble and the Yorkshire smack of the past century were among the finest examples of English sea-going craft ever devised, and none more fitted for the rugged coast to which they belonged or for the stormy seas on which they used to sail. —Peter F. Anson, 1933 First published in 1933, this book of a hundred of Ernest Dade’s delightful pen and ink sketches of the North Sea fishing fleet in the latter part of the nineteenth century is not only a significant artistic achievement, but also an invaluable historical record. Observed either from his own boat or from onboard the fishing boats themselves, the drawings have an immediacy rare in work of this kind—epitomized by the sketch on page 37 where it may not be too fanciful to imagine that the yawl in the foreground is Dade sailing out to meet the returning fishing fleet with pen and pad to hand. Not only do the sketches portray the boats and their gear accurately and in great detail, but they also show the fishermen at their work both offshore and inshore from most of the fishing centres of the Yorkshire coast. The facility of Dade’s pen work can only be admired and most certainly enjoyed. These pictures show all this and are true in every way. Mr. Ernest Dade lived the life, knew the men, and sailed in the various craft he draws so well. It is a record of things passed away. —Frank Wheeler, Fisherman, 1932 This new edition has an illustrated Postscript on the restored 40ft Bridlington Sailing Coble Three Brothers.


Bind: paperback


Pages: 224


Dimensions: 156 x 216 mm


Publication Date: 27-11-2013


$36.00
Snow on the Equator

ISBN: 9781909461147

Author: H. W. Tilman    Publisher: Lodestar Books

To those who went to the War straight from school and survived it, the problem of what to do afterwards was peculiarly difficult.' For H.W. 'Bill' Tilman, the s...


To those who went to the War straight from school and survived it, the problem of what to do afterwards was peculiarly difficult.' For H.W. 'Bill' Tilman, the solution lay in Africa: in gold prospecting, mountaineering and a 3,000-mile bicycle ride across the continent. Tilman was one of the greatest adventurers of his time, a pioneering climber and sailor who held exploration above all else. He made first ascents throughout the Himalaya, attempted Mount Everest, and sailed into the Arctic Circle. For Tilman, the goal was always to explore, to see new places, to discover rather than conquer. First published in 1937, Snow on the Equator chronicles Tilman's early adventures; his transition from East African coffee planter to famed mountaineer. After World War I, Tilman left for Africa, where he grew coffee, prospected for gold and met Eric Shipton, the two beginning their famed mountaineering partnership, traversing Mount Kenya and climbing Kilimanjaro and Ruwenzori. Tilman eventually left Africa in typically adventurous style via a 3,000-mile solo bicycle ride across the continent - all recounted here in splendidly funny style. Tilman is one of the greatest of all travel writers. His books are well-informed and keenly observed, concerned with places and people as much as summits and achievements. They are full of humour and anecdotes and are frequently hilarious. He is part of the great British tradition of comic writing and there is nobody else quite like him.


Bind: paperback


Pages: 215


Dimensions: 159 x 218 mm


Publication Date: 01-09-2015


$36.00
Mischief in Patagonia

ISBN: 9781909461161

Author: H. W. Tilman    Publisher: Lodestar Books

'So I began thinking again of those two white blanks on the map, of penguins and humming birds, of the pampas and of gauchos, in short, of Patagonia, a place wh...


'So I began thinking again of those two white blanks on the map, of penguins and humming birds, of the pampas and of gauchos, in short, of Patagonia, a place where, one was told, the natives' heads steam when they eat marmalade.' So responded H.W. 'Bill' Tilman to his own realisation that the Himalaya were too high for a mountaineer now well into his fifties. He would trade extremes of altitude for the romance of the sea with, at his journey's end, mountains and glaciers at a smaller scale; and the less explored they were, the better he would like it. Within a couple of years he had progressed from sailing a 14-foot dinghy to his own 45-foot pilot cutter Mischief, readied for her deep-sea voyaging, and recruited a crew for his most ambitious of private expeditions. Well past her prime, Mischief carried Tilman, along with an ex-dairy farmer, two army officers and a retired civil servant, safely the length of the North and South Atlantic oceans, and through the notoriously difficult Magellan Strait, against strong prevailing winds, to their icy landfall in the far south of Chile. The shore party spent six weeks crossing the Patagonian ice cap, in both directions, returning to find that their vessel had suffered a broken propeller. Edging north under sail only, Mischief put into Valparaiso for repairs, and finally made it home to Lymington via the Panama Canal, for a total of 20,000 nautical miles sailed, in addition to a major exploration 'first' all here related with the Skipper's characteristic modesty and bone-dry humour, and many photographs.


Bind: paperback


Pages: 202


Dimensions: 156 x 216 mm


Publication Date: 01-09-2015


$36.00
The Ascent of Nanda Devi

ISBN: 9781909461185

Author: H. W. Tilman    Publisher: Lodestar Books

I believe we so far forgot ourselves as to shake hands on it. H. W. Tilman , on reaching the summit of Nanda Devi. In 1934, after fifty years of trying, mountai...


I believe we so far forgot ourselves as to shake hands on it. H. W. Tilman , on reaching the summit of Nanda Devi. In 1934, after fifty years of trying, mountaineers finally gained access to the Nanda Devi Sanctuary in the Garhwal Himalaya. Two years later an expedition led by H.W. Tilman reached the summit of Nanda Devi. At over 25,000 feet, it was the highest mountain to be climbed until 1950. The Ascent of Nanda Devi , Tilman s account of the climb, has been widely hailed as a classic. Keenly observed, well informed and at times hilariously funny, it is as close to a conventional mountaineering account as Tilman could manage. Beginning with the history of the mountain ( there was none ) and the expedition s arrival in India, Tilman recounts the build-up and approach to the climb. Writing in his characteristic dry style, he tells how Sherpas are hired, provisions are gathered (including a mouth-blistering sauce containing 100 per cent chillies ) and the climbers head into the hills, towards Nanda Devi. Superbly parodied in The Ascent of Rum Doodle by W.E. Bowman, The Ascent of Nanda Devi was among the earliest accounts of a climbing expedition to be published. Much imitated but rarely matched, it remains one of the best.


Bind: paperback


Pages: 212


Dimensions: 156 x 216 mm


Publication Date: 16-12-2015


$36.00
Mischief among the Penguins

ISBN: 9781909461208

Author: H. W. Tilman    Publisher: Lodestar Books

‘Hand (man) wanted for long voyage in small boat. No pay, no prospects, not much pleasure’ So read the crew notice placed in the personal column of The Time...


‘Hand (man) wanted for long voyage in small boat. No pay, no prospects, not much pleasure’ So read the crew notice placed in the personal column of The Times by H W ‘Bill’ Tilman in the spring of 1959. This approach to selecting volunteers for a year-long voyage of 20,000 miles brought mixed seafaring experience—‘Osborne had crossed the Atlantic fifty-one times in the Queen Mary playing double bass in the ship’s orchestra’. With unclimbed ice-capped peaks and anchorages that could at best be described as challenging, the Southern Ocean island groups of Crozet and Kerguelen provided obvious destinations for Tilman and his fifty-year-old pilot cutter Mischief. His previous attempt to land in the Crozet Islands had been abandoned when their only means of landing was carried away by a severe storm in the Southern Ocean. Back at Lymington, a survey of the ship uncovered serious Teredo worm damage. Tilman, undeterred, sold his car to fund the rebuilding work and began planning his third sailing expedition to the southern hemisphere. Mischief among the Penguins, Tilman's account of landfalls on these tiny, remote volcanic islands, bears testament to the development of his ocean navigation skills and seamanship. The accounts of the island anchorages, their snow-covered heights, geology, and in particular the flora and fauna, pay tribute to the varied interests and ingenuity of Mischief's crew, not least after several months at sea when food supplies needed to be eked out. Tilman's writing style, rich with informative and entertaining quotations, highlights the lessons learned with typical self-deprecating humour, while playing down the immensity of his achievements. From the Foreword by Libby Purves: [Tilman] was not only an adventurer, brave and only rarely reckless, but a tremendous writer. He has that educated, unselfconscious late-Victorian facility and economy with words, sharpened further by his military youth. The sailing chronicles cover 140,000 miles of Arctic and Antarctic travels, and two shipwrecks, the loss of his beloved Mischief being the most wrenching. But he sailed on … This voyage was one of his finest: 20,000 miles of it to the Îles Crozet, where few have been and fewer still have sailed under their own mast. Libby Purves is a well-known British radio presenter, journalist, author and critic. A long-time sailor, she writes a column in Yachting Monthly and in 1982 edited an anthology drawn from Tilman’s sailing books. Tom Cunliffe has contributed an Afterword on the Bristol Channel Pilot Cutter. Tom has been sailing for most of his life and is one of the maritime world’s most popular writers and broadcasters. He is the author of numerous books, including the definitive work on the history of sailing pilot vessels.


Bind: paperback


Pages: 192


Dimensions: 156 x 216 mm


Publication Date: 10-12-2015


$36.00
When Men & Mountains Meet

ISBN: 9781909461222

Author: H. W. Tilman    Publisher: Lodestar Books

We had climbed a mountain and crossed a pass; been wet, cold, hungry, frightened, and withal happy. One more Himalayan season was over. It was time to begin thi...


We had climbed a mountain and crossed a pass; been wet, cold, hungry, frightened, and withal happy. One more Himalayan season was over. It was time to begin thinking of the next. ‘Strenuousness is the immortal path, sloth is the way of death.’ First published in 1946, the scope of H.W. ‘Bill’ Tilman’s When Men & Mountains Meet is broad, covering his disastrous expedition to the Assam Himalaya, a small exploratory trip into Sikkim, and then his wartime heroics. In the thirties, Assam was largely unknown and unexplored. It proved a challenging environment for Tilman’s party, the jungle leaving the men mosquito-bitten and suffering with tropical diseases, and thwarting their mountaineering success. Sikkim proved altogether more successful. Tilman, who is once again happy and healthy, enjoys some exploratory ice climbing and discovers Abominable Snowman tracks, particularly remarkable as the creature appeared to be wearing boots—‘there is no reason why he should not have picked up a discarded pair at the German Base Camp and put them to their obvious use.’ And then, in 1939, war breaks out. With good humour and characteristic understatement we hear about Tilman’s remarkable Second World War. After digging gun pits on the Belgian border and in Iraq, he was dropped by parachute behind enemy lines to fight alongside Albanian and Italian partisans. Tilman was awarded the Distinguished Service Order for his efforts—and the keys to the city of Belluno, which he helped save from occupation and destruction. Tilman’s comments on the German approach to Himalayan climbing could equally be applied to his guerrilla warfare ethos. ‘They spent a lot of time and money and lost a lot of climbers and porters, through bad luck and more often through bad judgement.’ While elsewhere the war machine rumbled on, Tilman’s war was fast, exciting, lightweight and foolhardy—and makes for gripping reading.


Bind: paperback


Pages: 260


Dimensions: 156 x 216 mm


Publication Date: 01-03-2016


$36.00
Mischief in Greenland

ISBN: 9781909461246

Author: H. W. Tilman    Publisher: Lodestar Books

Only a man in the devil of a hurry would wish to fly to his mountains, forgoing the lingering pleasure and mounting excitement of a slow, arduous approach under...


Only a man in the devil of a hurry would wish to fly to his mountains, forgoing the lingering pleasure and mounting excitement of a slow, arduous approach under his own exertions. H.W. ‘Bill’ Tilman’s mountain travel philosophy, rooted in Africa and the Himalaya and further developed in his early sailing adventures in the southern hemisphere, was honed to perfection with his discovery of Greenland as the perfect sailing destination. His Arctic voyages in the pilot cutter Mischief proved no less challenging than his earlier southern voyages. The shorter elapsed time made it rather easier to find a crew but the absence of warm tropical passages meant that similar levels of hardship were simply compressed into a shorter timescale. First published fifty years before political correctness became an accepted rule, Mischief in Greenland is a treasure trove of Tilman’s observational wit. In this account of his first two West Greenland voyages, he pulls no punches with regard to the occasional failings, leaving the reader to seek out and discover the numerous achievements of these voyages. The highlight of the second voyage was the identification, surveying and successful first ascent of Mount Raleigh, first observed on the eastern coast of Baffin Island by the Elizabethan explorer John Davis in 1585. For the many sailors and climbers who have since followed his lead and ventured north into those waters, Tilman provides much practical advice, whether from his own observations or those of Davis and the inimitable Captain Lecky. Tilman’s typical gift of understatement belies his position as one of the greatest explorers and adventurers of the twentieth century.


Bind: paperback


Pages: 216


Dimensions: 156 x 216 mm


Publication Date: 01-03-2021


$36.00
Mount Everest 1938

ISBN: 9781909461260

Author: H. W. Tilman    Publisher: Lodestar Books

Whether these mountains are climbed or not, smaller expeditions are a step in the right direction. It’s 1938, the British have thrown everything they’ve got...


Whether these mountains are climbed or not, smaller expeditions are a step in the right direction. It’s 1938, the British have thrown everything they’ve got at Everest but they’ve still not reached the summit. War in Europe seems inevitable; the Empire is shrinking. Still reeling from failure in 1936, the British are granted one more permit by the Tibetans, one more chance to climb the mountain. Only limited resources are available, so can a small team be assembled and succeed where larger teams have failed? H.W. Tilman is the obvious choice to lead a select team made up of some of the greatest British mountaineers history has ever known, including Eric Shipton, Frank Smythe and Noel Odell. Indeed, Tilman favours this lightweight approach. He carries oxygen but doesn’t trust it or think it ethical to use it himself, and refuses to take luxuries on the expedition, although he does regret leaving a case of champagne behind for most of his time on the mountain. On the mountain, the team is cold, the weather very wintery. It is with amazing fortitude that they establish a camp six at all, thanks in part to a Sherpa going by the family name of Tensing. Tilman carries to the high camp, but exhausted he retreats, leaving Smythe and Shipton to settle in for the night. He records in his diary, ‘Frank and Eric going well—think they may do it.’ But the monsoon is fast approaching... In Mount Everest 1938, first published in 1948, Tilman writes that it is difficult to give the layman much idea of the actual difficulties of the last 2,000 feet of Everest. He returns to the high camp and, in exceptional style, they try for the ridge, the route to the summit and those immense difficulties of the few remaining feet.


Bind: paperback


Pages: 216


Dimensions: 156 x 216 mm


Publication Date: 01-05-2016


$36.00
Mostly Mischief

ISBN: 9781909461284

Authors: H. W. Tilman, Roger D. Taylor    Publisher: Lodestar Books

However many times it has been done, the act of casting off the warps and letting go one’s last hold f the shore at the start of a voyage has about it somethi...


However many times it has been done, the act of casting off the warps and letting go one’s last hold f the shore at the start of a voyage has about it something solemn and irrevocable, like marriage, for better or for worse. Mostly Mischief ’s ordinary title belies four more extraordinary voyages made by H.W. ‘Bill’ Tilman covering almost 25,000 miles in both Arctic and Antarctic waters. The first sees the pilot cutter Mischief retracing the steps of Elizabethan explorer John Davis to the eastern entrance to the Northwest Passage. Tilman and a companion land on the north coast and make the hazardous crossing of Bylot Island while the remainder of the crew make the eventful passage to the southern shore to recover the climbing party. Back in England, Tilman refuses to accept the condemnation of Mischief ’s surveyor, undertaking costly repairs before heading back to sea for a first encounter with the East Greenland ice. Between June 1964 and September 1965, Tilman is at sea almost without a break. Two eventful voyages to East Greenland in Mischief provide the entertaining bookends to his account of the five-month voyage in the Southern Ocean as skipper of the schooner Patanela. Tilman had been hand-picked by the expedition leader as the navigator best able to land a team of Australian and New Zealand climbers and scientists on Heard Island, a tiny volcanic speck in the Furious Fifties devoid of safe anchorages and capped by an unclimbed glaciated peak. In a separate account of this successful voyage, Colin Putt describes the expedition as unique—the first ascent of a mountain to start below sea level.


Bind: paperback


Pages: 216


Dimensions: 156 x 216 mm


Publication Date: 16-06-2016


$36.00
© 2022 Nationwide Book Distributors