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Over the years we’ve read and been inspired by a wide variety of books. In the list below are some of our favorites that have informed and entertained us. We hope you will enjoy them, too.

In most cases, the links provided connect to a way to purchase the books through IndieBound, an organization that supports independent bookstores. We encourage you to always support your local bookstore when you can.


Patagonia, La Última Esperanza
by Mary Heebner & Macduff Everton

In this spectacular collection of panoramic images, award-winning photographer Macduff Everton proves why Chile's Last Hope Province, in the extreme southern corner of Patagonia, is a landscape that inspires.

On the Blue Shore of Silence: Poems of the Sea
by Pablo Neruda

At times passionate and at other times peaceful, the poems chosen for this collection – presented in bilingual format – are meant to offer readers the experience of what it would have been like to sit with Neruda at Isla Negra, the view of the sea endless, the pulse of the waves, eternal.

Fifty Classic Ski Descents of North America
by Chris Davenport, Art Burrows & Penn Newhard

A compilation of iconic and aesthetic ski descents from Alaska to Mount Washington. Created by ski mountaineers Chris Davenport, Art Burrows and Penn Newhard, the book taps into the local knowledge of contributors such as Andrew McLean, Glen Plake, Lowell Skoog, Chic Scott and Ptor Spricenieks.

Activism

The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals
by Michael Pollan

The Botany of Desire explores the ecology of eating to unveil why we consume what we consume in the 21st century by tracing the impact of meals from four distinctly different origins.

Confessions of an Eco-Warrior
by Dave Foreman

A book that will set the course for the environmental movement for years to come, Confessions of an Eco-Warrior is an inspiring ecological call-to-arms by America's foremost and most controversial environmental activist.

Harvest for Hope: A Guide to Mindful Eating
by Jane Goodall with Gary McAvoy and Gail Hudson

Renowned scientist and bestselling author Goodall delivers an eye-opening and empowering book that explores the social and personal significance of the food people produce and consume.

Through a Window
by Jane Goodall

Through aWindow is the dramatic saga of thirty years in the life of an intimately intertwined communityone that reads like a novel, but is one of the most important scientific works ever published.

Defending The Earth: A Debate Between Murray Bookchin & Dave Foreman

A book that will set the course for the environmental movement for years to come, Confessions of an Eco-Warrior is an inspiring ecological call to arms by America's foremost and most controversial environmental activist.

The Wildfire Reader: A Century of Failed Forest Policy
by George Wuerthner

Wildfires are an awe-inspiring natural phenomenon, a force that we cannot really control, and thus understanding, appreciating, and learning to live with wildfire is ultimately our wisest public policy.

Adventure/Travel

This Cold Heaven: Seven Seasons in Greenland
by Gretel Ehrlich

For the last decade, Gretel Ehrlich has been obsessed by an island, a terrain, a culture, and the treacherous beauty of a world that is defined by ice. In This Cold Heaven she combines the story of her travels with history and cultural anthropology to reveal a Greenland that few of us could otherwise imagine.

Patagonia: Notes from the Field
ed. Nora Gallagher

Patagonia: Notes from the Field is a collection of photographs and essays that stir the senses. Commissioned for Patagonia, the outdoor clothing and gear company, and with an introduction from its legendary founder, Yvon Chouinard, Notes from the Field delivers in both image and word.

Below Another Sky: A Mountain Adventure in Search of a Lost Father
by Rick Ridgeway

A renowned adventurer travels to Tibet with a young woman in search of her father's memory and gains a fresh perspective on his life. Combining gripping adventure writing with intimate memoir, Rick Ridgeway takes readers to the mysterious mountain domain of Tibet, and into the remote corners of his past.

My Family and Other Animals
by Gerald Durrell

When the unconventional Durrell family can no longer endure the damp, gray English climate, they sell their house and relocate to the sunny Greek isle of Corfu. My Family and Other Animals is a delightful account of Durrell's family's experiences, from the many eccentric hangers-on to the ceaseless procession of puppies, toads, scorpions, geckoes, ladybugs, glowworms, octopuses, bats, and butterflies into their home.

Act III in Patagonia, People and Wildlife
by William Conway

Patagonia connotes the exotic and seems nearly mythical. Tucked toward the toe of South America, this largely unsettled landscape is among the most varied and breathtaking in the world, aching in its beauty as it sweeps from the Andes through broad, arid steppes to pristine beaches and down to a famously violent sea.

Enchanted Vagabonds by Dana Lamb
by Dana Lamb

Dana and Ginger Lamb had no motive but adventure when they left California in the autumn of 1933 and headed south in a 16-foot vessel they had built themselves, the Vagabunda, a frail combination of sailboat and canoe. Not wanting to overload themselves the young newlyweds brought a minimum of equipment and less than five dollars between them.

The Big Open: On Foot Across Tibet's Chang Tang
by Rick Ridgeway

On foot and on their own, four adventurers brave the challenges of nature on a 275-mile trek through one of the most beautiful—and most remote—regions of the world.

Last Step: The American Ascent of K2
by Rick Ridgeway and Yvon Chouinard

In September 1978, Rick Ridgeway, Jim Wickwire, Lou Reichardt and John Roskelley stood on the summit of K2, the first Americans ever to achieve this victory. Under the leadership of Jim Whittaker, they had spent 67 days above 18,000 feet, where the stresses of high-altitude living, of monotonous food, of confinement in tiny tents, of frustrating storms had worn them down to the core.

Grizzlies of Pilgrim Creek
by Thomas Mangelsen and Todd Wilkinson

Nature photographer Thomas D. Mangelsen and environmental writer Todd Wilkinson team up to tell the remarkable and compelling story of a bear and her generations of offspring. Tracking this charismatic band of bears for nearly a decade, Mangelsen has amassed an incomparable photographic portfolio that offers an intimate glimpse into the lives of this celebrated bear family.

Agriculture/Ranching

The Fatal Harvest Reader
by Andrew Kimbrell

Fatal Harvest takes an unprecedented look at our current ecologically destructive agricultural system and offers a compelling vision for an organic and environmentally safer way of producing the food we eat. It gathers together more than forty essays by leading ecological thinkers including Wendell Berry, Wes Jackson, David Ehrenfeld, Helena Norberg-Hodge, Vandana Shiva, and Gary Nabhan.

The Soil Will Save Us!: How Scientists, Farmers, and Foodies Are Healing the Soil to Save the Planet
by Kristin Ohlson

Thousands of years of poor farming and ranching practices and, especially, modern industrial agriculture, have led to the loss of up to 80 percent of carbon from the world's soils. In The Soil Will Save Us!, journalist and bestselling author Kristin Ohlson makes an elegantly argued, passionate case for "our great green hope,"a way in which restore our planet.

 
Anthropology

Guns, Germs and Steel
by Jared Diamond

Jared Diamond convincingly argues that geographical and environmental factors shaped the modern world. Societies that had had a head start in food production advanced beyond the hunter-gatherer stage, and then developed religion --as well as nasty germs and potent weapons of war --and adventured on sea and land to conquer and decimate preliterate cultures.

 
 
Business and Philanthropy

Wildlands Philanthropy: The Great American Tradition
by Tom Butler, Antonio Vizcaino and Tom Brokaw

In Wildlands Philanthropy, veteran conservation writer Tom Butler and world-class landscape photographer Antonio Vizcaíno take readers on a visually spectacular tour of natural landmarks from Alaska to Tierra del Fuego and around globe.

Swim Against the Current: Even a Dead Fish Can Go With the Flow
by Jim Hightower and Susan DeMarco

America's most irascible and hilarious curmudgeon turns a kind and benevolent eye toward brave, hardy, and hardworking souls around the country who have found ways to break free from corporate tentacles; redefine success in business, politics, and life in general; and blaze new pathways toward a richer and happier way of life.

 
Climbing/Mountaineering

The Shadow of Kilimanjaro
by Rick Ridgeway

In one of the most acclaimed travel and adventure books of 1999, Rick Ridgeway chronicles his trek from the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro to the Indian Ocean, through Kenya's famed Tsavo Park. His tale is, according to The Boston Globe, "a gripping account of how it feels to be charged by an incensed elephant and kept awake at night by the roaring of stalking lions."

High Infatuation: A Climber's Guide to Love and Gravity
by Steph Davis

Davis, one of the most accomplished climbers in the world, writes on universal themes of life, love, friendship, and personal empowerment as expressed through a career in climbing. By following this young woman's journey, readers learn what it means to live a truly adventurous life.

Seven Summits
by Dick Bass, Frank Wells, and Rick Ridgeway

Frank Wells was the head of a major motion picture studio. Dick Bass had made his fortune as an energy and resort entrepreneur. In middle age, both men left home, family, and successful careers to share an impossible dream: be the first to climb the highest mountain on each of seven continents, from McKinley to Kilimanjaro to Everest.

Spirit of the Rock
by Ron Kauk

With the experience and passion of a seasoned Yosemite climber, Ron Kauk uses concise vignettes to share his thoughts on the natural world and our collective responsibility to care for the planet upon which we all rely. Peppered throughout Kauk's insightful observations are practical applications, lessons really, culled from twenty-five years spent dangling from sheer rock walls and granite overhangs around the world.

 
 
Environment/Ecology/Conservation

The Devil's Teeth: A True Story of Obsession and Survival Among America's Great White Sharks
by Susan Casey

A journalist's obsession brings her to a remote island off the California coast, home to the world's most mysterious and fearsome predators-and the strange band of surfer-scientists who follow them.

The Essential Grizzly: The Mingled Fates of Men and Bears
by Doug Peacock and Andrea Peacock

In The Essential Grizzly, Doug and Andrea Peacock argue that the conservation of big, wild, sometimes dangerous animals is of absolute importance to modern humans, to the survival of our own species, and for rational thought.

Eating Stone: Imagination and the Loss of the Wild
by Ellen Meloy

An inspired reflection on the bond between wild creatures and the human imagination, told as a chronicle of four seasons with a band of rare desert bighorn sheep.

ClutterFree Revolution: Simplify Your Stuff , Organize Your Life, & Save the World
by Evan Michael Zislis

This is a tough-love pep talk for American families. It is the quintessential pocket guide for clearing out, getting organized, and thriving with less stuff and more life.

 
 
Falconry

Eagle Dreams: Searching for Legends in Wild Mongolia
by Stephen J. Bodio

A fascinating account of the ancient–and still living–Mongolian tradition of hunting with eagles; a memoir of days spent in the company of the hunters, both human and avian.

On the Edge of the Wild: Passions and Pleasures of a Naturalist
by Stephen J. Bodio

Passionate outdoorsman Stephen Bodio manages to pull off an important feat in these collected nature writings: he makes the natural world fresh and new. With a seemingly small detail or minor twist, Bodio takes us to the edge of wildness and beyond.

H Is for Hawk
by Helen Macdonald

An experienced falconer, she'd never before been tempted to train one of the most vicious predators, the goshawk. But she saw that the goshawk's fierce and feral temperament mirrored her own. Resolving to purchase and raise the deadly creature, she adopted Mabel. Projecting herself "in the hawk's wild mind to tame her" tested the limits of Macdonald's humanity and changed her life.

A Rage for Falcons
by Stephen Bodio

A beautifully written account of the people involved in the sport of falconry and of the magnificent birds of prey that are the objects of the author's fascination and devotion. Enhanced with original line drawings.

 
 
Fiction

Letters from Chamonix
by David Stevenson

International climbing tales from by gone eras to the present that speak of the essence of mountain adventure and hint at those things that prowl just outside of our consciousness, how we deal with falls from great heights, and the sublime difference between an accident and revenge.

The Lobo Outback Funeral Home
by Dave Foreman and Doug Peacock

A hard-hitting, action-packed eco-thriller set in New Mexico and centered around active conservation issues.

On the Edge of the Wild: Passions and Pleasures of a Naturalist
by Stephen J. Bodio

Passionate outdoorsman Stephen Bodio manages to pull off an important feat in these collected nature writings: he makes the natural world fresh and new. With a seemingly small detail or minor twist, Bodio takes us to the edge of wildness and beyond.

Changing Light
by Nora Gallagher

A love story set in Los Alamos in 1945, in the shadow of the creation of the first atomic bomb. A young painter, Eleanor Garrigue, discovers a delirious man lying by the river. He is Leo Kavan, a physicist who has fled Los Alamos after a deadly radiation accident. As their pasts and the present unfold in tandem, they find they are connected and changed in unexpected ways by the brutal radiance of the war.

The Monkey Wrench Gang
by Edward Abbey

Ex-Green Beret George Hayduke has returned from war to find his beloved southwestern desert threatened by industrial development. Joining with Bronx exile and feminist saboteur Bonnie Abzug, wilderness guide and outcast Mormon Seldom Seen Smith, and libertarian billboard torcher Doc Sarvis, M.D., Hayduke is ready to fight the power taking on the strip miners, clear-cutters, and the highway, dam, and bridge builders.

The Milagro Beanfield War
by John Nichols

The tale of Milagro's rising is wildly comic and lovingly tender, a vivid portrayal of a town that, half-stumbling and partly prodded, gropes its way toward its own stubborn salvation.

Fishing

Hooked: Pirates, Poaching, and the Perfect Fish
by G. Bruce Knecht

Hooked: A True Story of Pirates, Poaching and the Perfect Fish is the extraordinary story of a remarkable fish, the men who prey upon it, and the people who battle to save it from extinction.

The Case of the Missing Cutthroats
by Jean Craighead George

This mystery begins when Spinner, a New York City native who would rather pirouette than fly cast, catches the family prize––much to her boy cousins' dismay. The prize fish, a huge cutthroat trout, had been thought to be extinct in the river, and Spinner and her cousin set out to solve the mystery of how this one spectacular cutthroat survived until Spinner reeled him in.

 
Food

In Defense of Food: An Eaters Manifesto
by Michael Pollan

Food. There's plenty of it around, and we all love to eat it. So why should anyone need to defend it? Because in the so-called Western diet, food has been replaced by nutrients, and common sense by confusion--most of what we're consuming today is longer the product of nature but of food science. The result is what Michael Pollan calls the American Paradox: The more we worry about nutrition, the less healthy we see to become

 
 
Memoir

Politics, Pollution & Pandas: An Environmental Memoir
by Russell E. Train

Train recounts his experience as a major player in environmental developments in the US government during the late 1960s and early 1970s, and before and after that in the nongovernmental environmental community, particularly as head of the World Wildlife Fund in the US.

Finding Beauty in a Broken World
by Terry Tempest Williams

In her most original, provocative, and eloquently moving book since Refuge, Terry Tempest Williams carefully constructs a skillful, nuanced mosaic of stories and observations to convincingly make the connection between racism and specism and sensitively argues for respect for life in all its myriad forms.

Climbing Free: My Life in the Vertical World
by Lynn Hill

In Climbing Free Hill describes her famous climb and meditates on how she harnesses the strength and the courage to push herself to such extremes. She tells of her near-fatal 80-foot fall, her youth as a stunt artist for Hollywood, her friendships with climbing's most colorful personalities, and the tragedies and triumphs of her life in the vertical world.

Arctic Dance: The Mardy Murie Story
by Charles Craighead and Bonnie Kreps

The Cherokees' poignant story is one that is difficult to believe: from their shameful treatment at the hands of the Colonial settlers, to their ""Removal"" west over the Trail of Tears in the 1800s, to their resurgence and current prosperity as a distinct nation. Presented in this elegant volume, the tale of the Cherokees' courage and endurance is at once remarkable, stirring, and enlightening.

Walking It Off: A Veteran's Chronicle of War and Wilderness
by Doug Peacock

Edward Abbey and Doug Peacock had an at-times stormy, almost father and son relationship that was peacefully resolved in Abbey's last days before his death in 1989. This rich recollection of their relationship and the dry places they explored are recalled in Peacock's honest and heartfelt style in this poignant memoir.

Refuge: An Unnatural History of Family and Place
by Terry Tempest Williams

In the spring of 1983 Terry Tempest Williams learned that her mother was dying of cancer. That same season, The Great Salt Lake began to rise to record heights. One event was nature at its most random, the other a by-product of rogue technology: Terry's mother had been exposed to the fallout of atomic bomb tests in the 1950s.

Naturalists/Natural History

The Third Chimpanzee: The Evolution and Future of the Human Animal
by Jared Diamond

Jared Diamond states the theme of his book up-front: "How the human species changed, within a short time, from just another species of big mammal to a world conqueror; and how we acquired the capacity to reverse all that progress overnight."

Desert Solitaire: A Season in the Wilderness
by Edward Abbey

he noted author's most enduring nonfiction work, Desert Solitaire is an account of Abbey's seasons as a ranger in some of the desert Southwest’s most stunning national parks, offering a clear-eyed vision of lands on the verge of being loved to death.

Grizzly Years: In Search of the American Wilderness
by Doug Peacock

For nearly twenty years, alone and unarmed, author Doug Peacock traversed the rugged mountains of Montana and Wyoming tracking the magnificent grizzly.

Yellowstone: Land of Fire and Ice
by Gretel Erlich

In the summer of 1883 Belgian travel writer Jules Leclercq spent ten days on horseback in Yellowstone, the world's first national park, exploring myriad natural wonders: astonishing geysers, majestic waterfalls, the vast lake, and the breathtaking canyon. He also recorded the considerable human activity, including the rampant vandalism.

Down the River
by Edward Abbey

"Be of good cheer," the war-horse Edward Abbey advises, "the military-industrial state will soon collapse." This sparkling book, which takes us up and down rivers and across mountains and deserts, is the perfect antidote to despair.

A Garden of Bristlecones: Tales of Change in the Great Basin
by Michael Cohen and Robert D. McCracken

An engaging, well-illustrated natural and cultural history of the oldest living tree -- the bristlecone pine.

Patagonia

Corcovado National Park
by Antonio Vizcaino

Corcovado National Park: Chile’s Corcovado National Park is one of the last great wilderness areas on Earth. In Corcovado National Park, renowned landscape photographer Antonio Vizcaíno captures the beauty and diversity of a magical setting almost un¬touched by modern humans.

Monte Leon National Park
by Antonio Vizcaino

Monte Leon National Park: In Monte León National Park, photographer Antonio Vizcaíno takes readers on a visual tour of the park’s natural features, exploring the wildlife, landforms, textures, and sublime quality of light where land meets sea.

Perito Moreno National Park
by Antonio Vizcaino and Douglas Tompkins

Perito Moreno National Park: Perito Moreno National Park presents a stunning collection of images, from renowned landscape photographer Antonio Vizcaino, of where the windswept Patagonian steppe meets the Andes. A stronghold of wild nature in a region so alluring that is has become synonymous with beauty at the end of the Earth.

Yendegaia National Park
by Antonio Vizcaino

Yendegaia National Park: Yendegaia National Park offers a visually spectacular tour of one of Earth’s most remote and scenic national parks.

Overdevelopment, Overpopulation, Overshoot
by Tom Butler

Overpopulation, Overdevelopment, Overshoot: Isn’t it time to start talking about the equation that matters most to the future of people and the planet? Overpopulation + Overdevelopment = Overshoot

 
Surfing

The Finest Line: The Global Pursuit of Big-Wave Surfing
by Rusty Long

Big-wave surfing has long been a part of the sport, but with more watermen pushing the boundaries, this subculture of the surf world is now moving out of the fringes. The current generation of surfers is continually reinventing the limits, making this the most advanced, dynamic, and exciting period in big-wave surfing history. This stunning coffee-table book captures the essence of the sport through breathtaking images and stories, as well as exclusive interviews with the surfers who play the starring roles during these rare, large-swell events.

 
 
Journals

American Alpine Journal

Published annually since 1929, the American Alpine Journal is internationally renowned as the world's journal of record for major climbs of all kinds. Feature articles include the most compelling stories, told by the climbers themselves. In Climbs & Expeditions, we document the year's greatest first ascents, from Antarctica to Afghanistan, and from Patagonia to Pakistan.