The Mountains Are Calling and I Must Go

As seen at The Passenger Press in Glasgow today:

The Passenger Press sells lovely hand-printed greetings cards and posters. We’ve bought some of their work before at zine fairs and online.

The quote was familiar so I looked it up when I got home. It’s from mountaineer John Muir. An informative article at Adventure Journal explains:

we should consider the full quote, which appears in an 1873 letter from Muir to his sister: “The mountains are calling & I must go & I will work on while I can, studying incessantly.” These words reveal a man who saw responsibility and purpose as well as pleasure in the mountains. Muir was a master observer who enjoyed the constant work of understanding nature.

I think that’s great and the sentiment is even more Escapological than I first thought. Obviously, “the mountains are calling and I must go” is a great thing to say as you stand up and walk out of a pointless work meeting. But it’s also about conducting yourself with decorum in real life, finding enthusiasm and intensity inside yourself and remaining true to it.

We happened upon The Passenger Press after delivering copies of my book, The Good Life for Wage Slaves to Good Press two doors along on the same street; why not get a copy in person if you happen to be nearby?

Dreamer John:


Robert Wringham is the editor of New Escapologist. He also writes books and articles. Read more at

Leave a Reply

Latest issues and offers


Issue 14

Our latest issue. Featuring interviews with Caitlin Doughty and the Iceman, with columns by McKinley Valentine, David Cain, Tom Hodgkinson, and Jacob Lund Fisker. 88 pages. £9.


Two-issue Subscription

Get the current and next issue of New Escapologist. 176 pages. £16.

Four-issue Subscription

Get the current and next three issues of New Escapologist. 352 pages. £36.

PDF Archive

Issues 1-13 in PDF format. Over a thousand digital pages to preserve our 2007-2017 archive. 1,160 pages. £25.