The Trail Provides: A Boy's Memoir of Thru-Hiking the Pacific Crest Trail


David Smart - 2018
    Bradley, his older, more adventurous, and slightly-wreckless college fraternity brother presents an enticing offer. Just a few weeks later, the two inexperienced hopefuls abandon society and plunge into a soul-searching sojourn to thru-hike the Pacific Crest Trail, a 2,650-mile Mexico-to-Canada footpath--barefoot. At the trail’s mercy from day one, the two hikers face the endless pains of walking, rising tensions, and falling behind to the coming winter. The Trail Provides is a thru-hiking memoir filled with stories about companionship and lessons learned, dreams and reality, and leaving everything behind for the desire of transformation, insight, and self-discovery. Now, let’s begin the journey…

The Summit Seeker


Vanessa Runs - 2013
    In The Summit Seeker, Vanessa Runs explores trail and ultra running on an emotional, psychological, and spiritual level. Vanessa started running to battle her demons, to heal her deepest wounds, and ultimately, to find her peace in the mountains. Her vivid descriptions of spectacular trails call you into wild places where you will find rugged beauty, expansive wilderness, and deep personal insights. Weaving her personal stories of struggle, hunger, and adventure, Vanessa tugs at our heartstrings and appeals to our most primitive drive as a species: to survive.

The Pursuit of Endurance: Harnessing the Record-Breaking Power of Strength and Resilience


Jennifer Pharr Davis - 2018
    With a storyteller's ear for fascinating detail and description, Davis takes readers along as she trains and sets her record, analyzing and trail-testing the theories and methodologies espoused by her star-studded roster of mentors. She distills complex rituals and histories into easy-to-understand tips and action items that will help you take perseverance to the next level. The Pursuit of Endurance empowers readers to unlock phenomenal endurance and leverage newfound grit to achieve personal bests in everything from sports and family to the boardroom.

Higher Love: Skiing the Seven Summits


Kit DesLauriers - 2015
    Centered on her quest to climb and ski the Seven Summits, Higher Love is a hero’s journey, rich with personal insights, life-threatening consequences, and a thrilling crescendo.Spanning seven continents in just two years, this is Kit’s personal account of the secret journey that would change her heart and her life forever. From braving Antarctica’s bone-chilling temperatures to trudging through an African rain forest, from corn snow on the continental slopes of Australia to blue ice on Everest, Kit leads you up each mountain and gives you a heart-racing ride back down.This candid, fast-paced story shows how inspiration, teamwork and honoring our true nature blazes the trail to every summit, on or off the mountain.

No Shortage of Good Days


John Gierach - 2011
    Consider this observation about fishing: "From my own experience I can say that a bad back makes you hike slower, stove-up knees keep you from wading confidently, tendinitis of the elbow buggers your casting, and a dose of giardia can send you dashing into the bushes fifteen times in an afternoon, but although none of this is fun, it's discernibly better than not fishing."Or this explanation for every fisherman's fascination with small streams: "The idea is to fish obscure headwater creeks in hopes of eventually sniffing out an underappreciated little trout creek down an un-marked dirt road. Why is another question. I suppose it's partly for the fishing itself and partly to satisfy your curiosity, but mostly to sustain the belief that such things are still out there to find for those willing to look."And perhaps the ultimate explanation for the fishing obsession: "I briefly wondered how much trouble a guy should go to in order to catch a few little trout, but then any fish becomes worth catching to the extent that you can't catch it, so the answer was obvious: Once you decide to try, you go to as much trouble as it takes."In "No Shortage of Good Days "Gierach takes usfrom the Smokies in Tennessee to his home waters in Colorado, from the Canadian Maritimes to Mexico--saltwater or fresh, it's all fishing and all irresistible. As always he writes perceptively about a wide range of subjects: the charm of familiar waters, the etiquette 27.99 of working with new fishing guides, night fishing when the trout and the mosquitoes are both biting, fishing while there is still slush on the river, fishing snobbery, and the delights of fresh fish cooked and eaten within sight of where it was caught. "No Shortage of Good Days "may be the next best thing to a day of fishing.

Unbound: A Story of Snow and Self-Discovery


Steph Jagger - 2017
    Dissatisfied with the passive, limited roles she saw for women growing up, she emulated the men in her life—chasing success, climbing the corporate ladder, ticking the boxes, playing by the rules of a masculine ideal. She was accomplished. She was living "The Dream." But it wasn't her dream.Then the universe caught her attention with a sign: Raise Restraining Device. Steph had seen this ski lift sign on countless occasions in the past, but the familiar words suddenly became a personal call to shake off the life she had built in a search for something different, something more.Steph soon decided to walk away from the success and security she had worked long and hard to obtain. She quit her job, took a second mortgage on her house, sold everything except her ski equipment and her laptop, and bought a bundle of plane tickets. For the next year, she followed winter across North and South America, Asia, Europe, and New Zealand—and up and down the mountains of nine countries—on a mission to ski four million vertical feet in a year.What hiking was for Cheryl Strayed, skiing became for Steph: a crucible in which to crack open her life and get to the very center of herself. But she would have to break herself down—first physically, then emotionally—before she could start to rebuild. And it was through this journey that she came to understand how to be a woman, how to love, and how to live authentically.Electrifying, heartfelt, and full of humor, Unbound is Steph’s story—an odyssey of courage and self-discovery that, like Wild and Eat, Pray, Love, will inspire readers to remove their own restraining devices and pursue the life they are meant to lead.

Free Outside: A Trek Against Time and Distance


Jeff Garmire - 2019
    Exhausted and emotionally ruined living the fast-paced life of a successful young professional it was all too easy to give up. The challenges came on the adventure of a lifetime. Months in the woods that would provide adversity, healing, and tranquility. Setting out to thru-hike the Pacific Crest Trail, Appalachian Trail, and Continental Divide Trail in a single calendar year was an audacious goal but the 8,000 mile Calendar Year Triple Crown would be the story of a lifetime. The journey was riddled with inclement weather, shady characters, wildlife attacks, and injuries. The trails crossed frozen rivers, were rerouted around wildfires, and packed with snow. The physical challenge was soon overshadowed by the mental toughness required. It became a mental battle. Free Outside is a captivating story of strength and courage. Hiking through remote areas in America, Jeff is continually overwhelmed by the kindness and generosity of strangers. Free Outside is the fascinating story of Jeff Garmire’s journey along the national scenic trails that define wild America.

Keep on Running: The Highs and Lows of a Marathon Addict


Phil Hewitt - 2012
    It’s a world that I love—a world unlocked when you dress up in lycra, put plasters on your nipples and run 26.2 miles in the company of upwards of 30,000 complete strangers." Phil Hewitt sets a fast pace in this light-hearted account of his adventures on the road. He has completed over 20 marathons in conditions ranging from blistering heat to snow and ice, and in locations from Berlin to New York. This story of an ordinary guy's addiction to running marathons looks at the highs and lows, the motivation that keeps you going when your body is crying out to stop, and tries to answer the ultimate question, "Why do you do it?"

48 Peaks: Hiking and Healing in the White Mountains


Cheryl Suchors - 2018
    All forty-eight of them. She endures injuries, novice mistakes, and the heartbreaking loss of a best friend. When breast cancer threatens her own life, she seeks solace and recovery in the wild. Her quest takes ten years. Regardless of the need since childhood to feel successful and in control, climbing teaches her mastery isn’t enough and control is often an illusion.Connecting with friends and with nature, Suchors redefines success: she discovers a source of spiritual nourishment, spaces powerful enough to absorb her grief, and joy in the persistence of love and beauty. 48 Peaks inspire us to believe that, no matter what obstacles we face, we too can attain our summits.

Kayak: The Animated Manual of Intermediate and Advanced Whitewater Technique


William Nealy - 1986
    Complete with all the details to enhance your whitewater experience, Kayak is a great resource for learning new skills for intermediate and advanced kayakers and learning rescue basics. Plus, all of this is explained in easy-to-read and understand illustrations that are as funny as they are resourceful. This book will teach you basic river courtesy rules, intermediate and advanced technique, and most importantly, how to hold on to your life and limbs and keep your sanity as well.

Learning to Fly: An Uncommon Memoir of Human Flight, Unexpected Love, and One Amazing Dog


Steph Davis - 2013
    That coincidence of timing really wasn’t.”Steph Davis is a superstar in the climbing community and has ascended some of the world’s most awe-inspiring peaks. But when her husband makes a controversial climb in a national park, the media fallout—and the toll it takes on her marriage—suddenly leaves her without a partner, a career, a source of income...or a purpose.In the company of only her beloved dog, Fletch, Davis sets off on a search for a new identity and discovers skydiving. Though falling out of an airplane is completely antithetical to the climber’s control she’d practiced for so long, she turns each daring jump into an opportunity to fly, first as a skydiver, then as a base jumper, and finds herself indelibly changed. As she opens herself to falling, she also finds the strength to open herself to love again, even in the wake of heartbreak. And before too long, she fortuitously meets someone who shares her passions.Learning to Fly is Davis’s fascinating account of her transformation. From her early tentative skydives, to zipping into her first wingsuit, to surviving devastating accidents against the background of breathtaking cliffs, to soaring beyond her past limits, she discovers new hope and joy in letting go. Learning to Fly isn’t just an adventure but a woman’s story of risk-taking and self-discovery, with love at its heart.

A Walk for Sunshine: A 2,160 Mile Expedition for Charity on the Appalachian Trail


Jeff Alt - 2000
    As Alt walked more than 5 million steps through freezing temperatures, driving rain, and sunny skies, he was constantly buoyed by the knowledge that his walk was dedicated to his brother who has cerebral palsy. Alt's adventure inspired an annual fundraiser which has raised over $500,000 for Sunshine, the home where his brother lives. This is the 20th anniversary edition. As you walk along with Alt, experience the success of turning dreams into goals and achieving them. Alt's lessons from the trail celebrate family, stewardship of the earth, good health, and the American spirit.

The Trail Life: How I Loved it, Hated it, and Learned from it


Julie Urbanski - 2010
    She begins the trail with the sole purpose of getting to Canada and quickly realizes she has a lot to learn not only about backpacking, but more importantly, about herself. Much more than an account of meals, miles and mammals, this book takes key aspects from life on the trail and relates them to how they impact her on a deeper level through valuable lessons learned while traveling one of America's most beautiful and rugged hiking trails. From the simple lessons regarding the importance of food and water to the deeper questions about personal fulfillment and happiness, Stopwatch covers the gamut, sharing the trail experience with all its joys and challenges. This book is for those who enjoy and appreciate challenging, life-altering experiences. Even if you never step foot on the trail, the thought-provoking and entertaining stories from Stopwatch's hike will call on you to evaluate the way you look at yourself, your choices, and the life around you.

Starlight and Storm


Gaston Rébuffat - 1954
    . . who has discovered through the medium of mountains the true perspective of living." --Sir John Hunt, author of The Conquest of Everest Known for his lyrical writing and his ability to convey not only the dangers of mountaineering but the pure exaltation of the climb, Gaston Rebuffat is among the most well-known and revered Alpinists of all time. He rose to international prominence in 1950 as one of the four principal stalwarts in the first ascent of Annapurna, the highest mountain climbed at that time. Yet his finest feat as a mountaineer was to be the first man to climb all six of the legendary great north faces of the Alps--the Grandes Jorasses, the Piz Badile, the Dru, the Matterhorn, the Cima Grande di Lava-redo, and the Eiger.With this elegant book, first published in 1954, Gaston Rebuffat transformed mountain writing. His insistence on seeing a climb as an act of harmonious communion with the mountain, not a battle waged against it, seemed radical at the time, though Rebuffat's aesthetic has since won the day. Through storms, avalanches, rock fall, unplanned bivouacs, and even the deaths of companions, we follow the Chamonix guide to the altar of his communion, on dark, icy walls that struck terror into the hearts of Europe's finest mountaineers. Nor are these deft narratives mere recitations of dangers faced and obstacles overcome, for Rebuffat pays as keen attention to the joys of comradeship won on these faces as he does to the climbs themselves. In our own day of corporate sponsorships, online expeditions, and eco-vacations, the purity of Rebuffat's vision of the Alps as (in the epithet of the title of another of his books) an "enchanted garden" shines forth in prose as fresh and stylish as any ever lavished on mountaineering.

Paddlenorth: Adventure, Resilience, and Renewal in the Arctic Wild


Jennifer Kingsley - 2014
    They battle raging winds, impenetrable sea ice, treacherous rapids, and agonizing sores and blisters while contending with rising tensions among the group. But they also experience the lasting joy of grizzly sightings, icy swims, and the caribou’s summer migration. Woven through this spellbinding narrative are often-harrowing accounts of the journeys of earlier explorers, some of whom never made it back home. Paddlenorth paints an indelible portrait of the spectacular Arctic landscape, rendered with a naturalist’s eye and an artist's sensibility, and offers an eloquent exploration of how wilderness changes us.