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Summer Reads (Outdoor Edition)

We’ve said it a lot… we LOVE the great outdoors.  Whether we are under a roof of shingles or stars, we love to read about exciting outdoor places, great events, nerdy research, and so much more.

Here’s a selection of our favorite outdoorsy books:


  • Last Child in the Woods- Saving Our Children from Nature-Deficit Disorder by Richard Louv.  Need a reminder on the importance of nature for our children?  This book is a great read that will make you want to get outside NOW.


  • The Wild Trees. By Richard Preston.  A story all about finding and climbing big trees. Of course it’s on our list!


  • The Gift of Good Land. By Wendell Berry.  “In the twenty-four essays of this collection, Well Berry stresses the carefully modulated harmonics of indivisibility in culture and agriculture, the interdepence, the wholeness, the oneness, of man, animals, the land, the weather, and the family. To touch one, he shows, is to tamper with them all.”¹

  • The Monkey Wrench Gang By Edward Abbey.  Outrageous characters bent on sabotaging environmentally damaging practices in the west.  Author Edward Abbey himself was well known for his advocacy of environmental issues, criticism of public land policies, and anarchist political views.


  • The Big Burn: Teddy Roosevelt and the Fire that Saved America. By Timothy Eagan. The author retells the dramatic story of a forest fire the likes of which had not ever been recorded.  This devastating fire led to the creation of the National Forest Service.


  • A River Runs Through It. by Norman Maclean.  Many have likely seen the movie.  Both are excellent, but the book really takes you to the scene: the Western Rocky Mountains.  Semi-autobiographical the book depicts the relationship of two Montana brothers finding their way in the world in the early 20th century.


  • The Botany of Desire. By Michael Pollan.  I liked the Amazon description for this one:

      “He masterfully links four fundamental human desires―sweetness, beauty, intoxication, and control―with the plants that satisfy them: the apple, the tulip, marijuana, and the potato. In telling the stories of four familiar species, Pollan illustrates how the plants have evolved to satisfy humankind’s most basic yearnings. And just as we’ve benefited from these plants, we have also done well by them. So who is really domesticating whom?”

Next on our reading list:

  • Grandma Gatewood’s Walk: The Inspiring Story of the Woman Who Saved the Appalachian Trail
  • The River of Doubt: Theodore Roosevelt’s Darkest Journey
    by Candice Millard
  • The Wild Muir: Twenty-Two of John Muir’s Greatest Adventures
    by Lee Stetson

Just writing this has me excited to set up a hammock under a couple trees and crack open a good book.  What are you reading this summer?  Comment below for titles we should read too!