A fascinating tale of extreme travelling on foot and by mule in the high Andes.
The eight feet belong to Dervla Murphy, her nine-year-old daughter Rachel and Juana, an elegant mule, who together clambered the length of Peru, from Cajamarca near the border with Ecuador, to Cuzco, the ancient Inca capital, over 1300 miles to the south.
With only the most basic necessities to sustain them and spending most of their time above 10,000 feet, their journey was marked by extreme discomfort, occasional danger and even the temporary loss of Juana over a precipice. Yet mother and daughter, a formidable duo, were unflagging in their sympathetic response to the perilous beauty and impoverished people of the Andes.
In this extraordinary adventure, Dervla Murphy is at her intrepid best, facing up to the terrors, horrors and joys of her journey along the mountain paths.
One of the most joyous, positive and poetic voyages - physical, spiritual and environmental - Irish Independent
This adventure is one of Dervla Murphy's best. She remains her humorous, modest, self-mocking self. - Daily Telegraph
A tone of exuberance and generosity dominates the book ... The reader's admiration is boundless - Caroline Moorehead, The Spectator
This is the best account I have read of travel on foot in the Andes. The appreciation for scenery and people and the sheer enjoyment of the journey makes Dervla Murphy one of our outstanding travel writers - Traveller
There is nothing so dramatic as mountains rising sheer from the plain ... and Dervla Murphy responds with more than the routine rapture of the professional travel writer - Christopher Wordsworth, Observer
Dervla Murphy is always an honest and endearing companion, so stout of heart and physique that she almost belittles her achievement - Sunday Telegraph