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Thoreau's Walden Pond

Listed under Literary Locations in US East Coast, United States.

  • Photo of Thoreau's Walden Pond
  • Photo of Thoreau's Walden Pond
  • Photo of Thoreau's Walden Pond
Photo of Thoreau's Walden Pond
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Living basically in the woods at Walden Pond inspired Henry David Thoreau to write his classic work on simplification and ‘living deliberately‘ “Walden”, which now draws crowds to the very places he came to for solitude and reflection. There is even a ‘Walden tour’ visiting a replica of Henry’s sparse one roomed house and some of his favourite spots, which seems to go against the grain of the book, but then maybe it is helpful to some people to see exactly as he did rather than to find their own corner of the world in which to consider their existence. There is more than 2500 acres of woods and reservation here so there is no reason to crowd each other, even less because they have limited the numbers of people who can enter the Reservation section at any time to 1000.

Cynicism aside this is a very beautiful place and it is understandable why Thoreau took Emerson up on the offer to live and work here, it is also easy to see why his work was so focused on the natural world, many scholars tribute Thoreau and his experiences here as beginning the conservation movement. Building his own dwelling, gardening, studying the area and writing weren’t Walden’s only activities and he wasn’t the total hermit people assume, he did however manage to pare back his life to the necessities which is still something that visitors can take away from their visit to Walden Pond if they can find their own piece of solitude to reflect on Thoreau’s message.

These days it’s a popular destination for swimming, walking and fishing, which Thoreau would probably approve of, it is also one of the best looked after pieces of woodland I could imagine, so at least Thoreau’s ‘live deliberately’ message lives on here.

Written by  Sophie Edgerton.

Other expert and press reviews

“Depth and Purity: Communing With Thoreau at the Pond ”

By JAY ATKINSON for The New York Times First Published October 2nd, 2009 I ARRIVE at Walden Pond State Reservation here just after sunrise, recalling that a certain local resident named Thoreau once wrote that “morning brings back the heroic ages… Read more...

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