John Hillaby, who died in 1996, was an English travel writer and explorer.
I’ve read two of his books, ‘Journey through Britain’ and ‘Journey through Europe’.
The joy of Hillaby’s work is his old-school approach to hiking and travel writing.
He doesn’t go on endlessly about gear, make tediously unfunny quips or bitch about the lack of WiFi access (the two books above are both pre-internet).
Oh, and he can actually write; with wit, charm and intelligence, now that is a rarity!
Hillaby also enjoyed roughing it a bit, he’d walk a 25 mile day (fuelled by fried eggs and pints from local pubs), find a wooded space and settle down for a good sleep. A wild camper in all senses.
Here’s a quote from ‘Journey through Britain’:
On the brow of the Quantocks that night I settled down on a little platform of heather where the coast of Wales could be seen across the splendour of Bridgewater Bay…An owl called a roll through the pine trees; swifts screamed and hinds grazed in the dingle below. For a little time there seemed to be no time that I could recall with greater pleasure. I slept for nine hours.
Both books mentioned above are out of print but easy to find via the usual channels, I can’t recommend them highly enough.