Published: August 2012
"When I traced my finger along the squiggly line on the map, I had been imagining more than a journey down the river, from the source to the mouth. This was to be a journey into the soul, to help me understand who we Hunter people are, and how, like the rocks in the current, the river has shaped us."
'Bevan writes with an easy, informative style and mixes an entertaining brew by combining well-researched history, reminiscences (he has previously rowed more than 300 kilometres of the Hunter), chats with those he meets on the way and thoughtful, evocative descriptions of the landscape.' - Bruce Elder, Sydney Morning Herald After navigating Russia, ABC journalist Scott Bevan decided to come home - via the river which ran through his childhood, the Hunter. In his curiously named kayak, Pulbah Raider, Scott sets out to paddle the river's length, from near the headwaters high in the Barrington tops hundreds of kilometres to the Pacific Ocean at Newcastle. the river carries him through time, connecting him to the people who live and work on its banks, some doing it tough, others enjoying the good life. As he learns, the Hunter is not just a region, it's a place that has helped to shape the nation. From it comes the food and wine many of us consume to the electricity in our homes. the river itself has inspired artists, poets and storytellers. It has helped realise dreams and make fortunes, from mining to farming. And during floods, it has washed away livelihoods - and lives. Now, as the competition for its resources intensifies, the river's health - and the region's lifeblood - are at risk. told with humour and panache, the Hunter takes readers on an engaging ride into the soul of Australia itself.