Into the Mist, Volume 1 depicts men and women in extreme situations, struggling to survive against brutal and often lethal adversity. These are the real stories of events and circumstances that directly threatened—and in some cases, claimed—human lives, and they all take place against the backdrop of the wild and exquisite Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The book’s 13 chapters relive a hiker’s lonely death from hypothermia, the first fatal bear mauling in park history, a massive and successful rescue operation by park rangers, killers at large in the park, lightning strikes on the Appalachian Trail and other true and harrowing incidents. Includes a comprehensive appendix of all known fatalities that occurred in the park between 1931 and 2013 and lists the park’s leading causes of death and most dangerous places.
David Brill’s articles on science, ecology, the environment, business, health, fitness, parenting, and adventure travel have appeared in more than 25 national and regional magazines, including National Geographic Traveler and Men’s Health. Brill has written extensively for and about Great Smoky Mountains National Park for nearly 20 years and has been a regular contributor to Smokies Life magazine since the publication’s launch in 2007.
Into the Mist is Brill’s fifth book. “These are stories about human beings—fathers, mothers, children, friends—who suffered mightily before they succumbed in some cases, or were rescued in others,” he writes in the book’s introduction. Brill spent two years on Into the Mist, including a large amount of time consumed with researching and selecting the stories that would be featured in each of the book’s 13 chapters, which include dangerous snowstorms, a powerful lightning strike, a deranged killer and a murder mystery, all occurring in Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
Brill has published four other nonfiction books, including As Far as the Eye Can See: Reflections of an Appalachian Trail Hiker (UT Press-Appalachian Trail Conservancy, 2013), A Separate Place: A Father’s Reflection on Building a Home and Renewing a Family (Plume, 2001), Desire and Ice: Searching for Perspective atop Denali (National Geographic Adventure Press, 2002) and Cumberland Odyssey: A Journey in Pictures and Words along Tennessee’s Cumberland Trail and Plateau (Mountain Trail Press, 2010).
Brill, his wife, Belinda, their dog, Zebulon, and two cats, Elle and Tater Tot, live in a cabin in Morgan County, Tennessee.