Photos of Edward Abbey during his mid-century heyday reveal a man who could easily be deemed a caricature of the average environmentalist. But, there’s nothing ironic about Abbey’s style. Few outdoors men lived their ideals as intensely as Abbey. As a part time Park Ranger, part time writer, and full time radical, Abbey was a true environmentalist, who believed that we should save the earth at all costs, even if it meant denouncing democracy or landing on the FBI watch-list. Abbey was an unabashed anarchist, an alleged womanizer, and an all around ecological badass. With his stomping cowboy boots, dual pocket work shirts, suede western vests, and beat up bush hats, Abbey looked straight off the reservation, which was fitting as so many considered him to truly be off the res. Abbey’s clothes were utilitarian first and foremost, as they needed to protect him out in the wild, and so his garb earned a sand-beaten, sun-burnt quality that money just cannot buy. Edward Abbey lived hard, and thought big, which is why nearly twenty-five years after his death he remains an inspiration.
A classic Abbey outfit:
Filson Tin Cloth Bush Hat
Best Made Co. Field Shirt
Red Wing Heritage 6″ Round Toe Boots
Save Khaki Corduroy Jeans
Jake Gallagher is a writer currently living in Manhattan. He focuses on back stories and the historical side of menswear at his site Wax-Wane.com. You can also follow him on Twitter.