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Hoffmaster
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Post by Hoffmaster »

How about the standard Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer, or Desert Solitaire by Edward Abbey? These are 2 of my favorites. Some others that were interesting were John Wesley Powell's The Exploration of the Colorado River and Its Canyons, and Helen Corbin's The Bible on the Lost Dutchman Gold Mine and Jacob Waltz."
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Post by azbackpackr »

Among my favorites are most of what you guys already said plus the following:
Arctic Daughter, by Jean Aspen.
River, by Colin Fletcher. Also by Colin Fletcher:
The Man Who Walked Through Time
The Thousand Mile Summer
Down the Colorado, by Robert B. Stanton (if you can find it anywhere, maybe at the library?)
All My Rivers Are Gone, by Katie Lee.
There Was a River, by Bruce Berger.
The Monkeywrench Gang, by Edward Abbey.
Also the following books by Micheal Ghiglieri of Flagstaff: Canyon, First Through Grand Canyon, Death in Grand Canyon.

I want to say something about Jean Aspen. (Real name is Jean Irons.) She lives in Tucson--I've met her and her husband and son. Her books were easy to find at Bookman's there, usually. Not really well-known, though. I have to say, I have never read an outdoor adventure story I could both relate to as well as be amazed by as Arctic Daughter. I can't tell you enough how great an adventure story this is! Not like they spent thousands of dollars to climb Everest or sail around the world, but instead a couple of 20-year-old kids on a shoestring budget, trying to canoe up an Alaskan river and build a cabin and live in it. Very well-written. You will get cold just reading it! I can't recommend it enough! I think you should be able to find it on Amazon.com. She also wrote a sequel, Arctic Son, which is worth reading, but hasn't the impact of the first one.
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Post by Lizard »

Into a Desert Place: A 3000 mile walk around the coast of Baja California Graham Mackintosh

Longest Walk: An Odyssey of the Human Spirit George Meegan

The Great Divide Stephen Pern

High Summer: Backpacking the Canadian Rockies Chris Townsend

Walking the Yukon: A Solo Journey through the Land of Beyond Chris Townsend

Crossing Arizona: A Solo Hike Through the Sky Islands and Deserts of the Arizona Trail Chris Townsend

Ten Million Steps: Nimblewill Nomad's Epic 10-Month Trek from the Florida Keys to Quebec MJ Eberhart

The High Adventure of Eric Ryback: Canada to Mexico on Foot Eric Ryback

The Ultimate Journey: Canada to Mexico down the Continental Divide Eric Ryback

Journey on the Crest: Walking 2,600 Miles from Mexico to Canada Cindy Ross

Scraping Heaven : A Family's Journey Along the Continental Divide Cindy Ross

Along the Arizona Trail M. John Fayhee

Along the Colorado Trail M. John Fayhee

Along the Pacific Crest Trail Karen Berger

Where the Waters Divide: A 3,000-Mile Trek Along America's Continental Divide Karen Berger

A Blistered Kind of Love: One Couple's Trial by Trail Angela and Duffy Ballard

Then The Hail Came George "Exile" Steffanos
(note: this one is an online book/journal, but it is of significantly better quality than most online journals of long hikes)

Walking on the Happy Side of Misery JR "Model T" Tate

Walking With Spring Earl Schaffer

There are Mountains to Climb Jean "Indiana Jean" Deeds

Also, the following are children's books. They were my favorite books growing up, and I still re-read them periodically as an adult. They would make great gifts for your kids, or to read yourself:

My Side of the Mountain Jean Craighead George

Hatchet Gary Paulsen
(Hatchet spawned a series of books such as Brian's Return and Brian's Winter, all of which are good reads.)
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Post by azbackpackr »

Nice list! Wow! I've read over half of these. I love that Graham Mackintosh one--that's the one with the burro, correct?
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Post by AZHikr4444 »

Into Thin Air got me started on reading a slew of adventure/survival non-fiction. I think Black Sun reveals much more about Abbey personality, although Desert Solitare is of course much more popular.

Running the Amazon by Joe Kane is an awesome read.

Sandstone Spine: First Traverse of Comb Ridge is also great.

Craig Childs has a couple of cool books:

The Way Out

The Secret Knowledge of Water

For Dutchman stuff, I recommend Dr. Glover's excellent The Golden Dream. I'm re-reading it now, and would like to find the second part of his series, called The Holmes Manuscript, but Amazon is saying it is currently unavailable, whatever that means.
Last edited by AZHikr4444 on Jan 05 2007 11:27 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Post by joebartels »

seems I've seen it at Barnes recently
highly recommended!
- joe
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Post by AZHikr4444 »

Thanks Joe! I'll check Barnes out.
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Post by Hoffmaster »

Lizard wrote:Hatchet Gary Paulsen
Oh my gosh! I forgot all about this book! I think I was like...10, when I read it. I remember it was my favorite book for a long time!
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Post by 0hurricanes »

I enjoyed "Between a rock and a hard place" by Aron Ralston, the one who cut off his arm, "Death in the Grand Canyon" and "Survive! My fight for life in the High Sierras" by Peter Deleo.

Jeff
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Post by te_wa »

does anyone know if Andrew Skurka has written a book yet of his adventures along the Coast-to-Coast trail?
squirrel!
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Post by azbackpackr »

Oh, also I read that one about the lost ranger recently, The Last Season. It was pretty good, but had an awful lot of fill in it to fluff it out to book length, I thought.

There was another one that took place in the Sierras, the autobiographical one where the woman solo backpacker falls and has a lot of injuries, lays there for days and weeks and is finally found, barely alive. I forget the title. It was pretty good at the beginning, but way too New Agey and touchy-lovey-dovey-feely for me, the second half of it. Spare me that touchy feely stuff, please! Anyone remember the title of that one?
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Post by weasel »

The Lost Season by Eric Blehm (mentioned above by azbackpackr) was good. Yes, there was some filler in there, but I thought it added to the story.

I loved the Over the Edge: Death in Grand Canyon book. I expected it to be more of dry account/list of the deaths, but I thought the descriptions of selected mishaps was really good, and pretty educational too. Made me think twice about some future hikes. :?

A couple of more northerly books:

Lost in the Wild by Cary J. Griffith: Tells the stories of 2 men: one was a guide leading a group of Boy Scouts in Quetico Provinical Park who disappeared in the woods after falling and hitting his head on a rock, and the other is about a man in the Boundary Waters who made a series of mistakes that got him into a rather difficult situation. The 2 stories are told in alternating chapters, and again, made me think twice about some future hikes up there.

The Children's Blizzard by David Laskin is a bit different because it's not a hiking/mountaineering type of survival story. It dips into historical data and survivors' accounts to tell the story of the 1888 blizzard in the Dakotas/Nebraska. "In three minutes, the front subtracted eighteen degrees from the air's temperature. Then evening gathered in, and temperatures kept dropping in the northwest gale. By morning on Friday, January 13, 1888, more than a hundred children lay dead on the Dakota-Nebraska prairie...." It's scary, totally fascinating and very good.
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Post by AZHikr4444 »

Liz- that book was called Angels in the Wilderness, by Amy Racine.

I haven't read Death in the Grand Canyon, but I have read Death in Yellowstone. Man some people have no common sense! I mean- to try and put your kid on a buffalo for a picture- even I will only go so far for a shot! The stories about the hot pools are pretty gruesome.

While not autobiographical, I do have a pretty cool book called Deep Survival, by Laurence Gonzales. Scientific and technical look at physiological and psychological phenom during survival experiences.

Survivor, by Chuck Pahlaniuk? Okay, so not really in the same category but...

I do have to plug one- while not about adventure, at least as we are discussing it, but set in AZ nonetheless:

The Miracle Life of Edgar Mint, by Brady Udall. Fictional but set around Globe.

Sorry for the digress..
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Post by azbackpackr »

About Death in Grand Canyon. I actually have a postcard with the cover of that book as its picture and on the back a very nice note from the author, Michael Ghiglieri, who was kind enough to respond to a letter I sent him. His other books I've read are Canyon and First Through Grand Canyon.

Everyone who hikes or rafts the Canyon who has read Powell's account should also read First Through Grand Canyon. It is probably as close to the truth of what really happened on Powell's first expedition as you are going to find anywhere. You guys do know that Powell told numerous lies about that 1869 expedition? He is one of those people that, while I can admire his intrepid courage, I don't really like him. As a human being he left much to be desired. What happened to the Howland brothers and William Dunn after they left the party at Separation Rapids? Why did Powell combine events from both expeditions into one account, making it sound like it was one expedition, and leaving out the names of the people in the second expedtion, such as Frederick Dellenbaugh, who himself was a very prominent person of the day? Why did he never even pay his hired boatmen?

Information about what really happened to Dunn and the Howlands is kept hidden away somewhere in Utah. The historian from Tucson who found direct evidence that these three men were killed by settlers, not Indians, was told he could no longer look at the letters he had been reading, where they were kept in a library. Here it is, now almost 140 years later, and they are hiding the evidence from the historians. But the boatmen on the expedition kept secret diaries, and were suspicious of events afterward, so even without these sequestered letters it is pretty clear what actually happened to those guys.

While I'm on the topic, if you can find Down the Colorado, by Robert B. Stanton, then it's a definite "must" on your reading list if you are studying Grand Canyon history. Stanton was an engineer on the ill-fated 1889 expedition to build a railroad down the Canyon below the rim. In addition to being a gripping tale of tragedy and disaster, Stanton truly saw the beauty of the Canyon and could express it in words. It's a great story, and it should be reprinted. I do not own a copy, having found it in the Tucson Pima library system, the U of A library, and also through interlibrary loan. Every time I try to find a copy on Amazon it is not to be found. There is another book he wrote I haven't read yet: Colorado River Controversies, where he really rips Powell.

Also, if you have been to South Canyon or Vasey's Paradise, then you probably climbed up to Stanton's Cave, where the party stayed after one of the several tragedies.
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Post by Trishness »

All My Rivers Are Gone by Katie Lee

The Way Out and The Secret Knowledge of Water by Craig Childs

Everything else was listed by other members.

:mrgreen:
Trish-Kabob

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Post by djui5 »

Great hiking book about the Superstitions is "Hikers guide to the Superstition Wilderness" by Jack Carlson. It's an incredible book detailing most of the trails/locations in the Superstitions, and has a lot of Dutchie stuff in it. The writer, Jack has covered almost every square inch of that range :) He's a nice guy to boot. Book can be found everywhere. Saw it in Borders the other day.

A great book to read on Dutchie stuff is Sims Ely's book "The Lost Dutchman Mine".
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Post by RedRoxx44 »

Not survival books in true sense but stories of backcountry living and or historical reads---

My Canyonlands by Kent Frost
The Doing of the Thing-Buzz Holstrom by Welch,Conley and Dimock
Sandstone Sunsets In Search of Everett Ruess by Mark Taylor
River by Colin Fletcher
Richard Wetherill--Anasazi--by Frank McNitt
Anasazi America by David Stuart
Sandstone Seduction by Katie Lee
Year of the Fires-story of the great fires of 1910 by Stephen Pyne
Legends of the American Desert by Alex Shoumatoff
Shoot Out at Dawn by Tom Power-- a galiuro must read
Robbers Roost Recollections by Peal Baker
People of Chaco by Kendrick Frasier
The Kingdom in the Country by James Conaway
Singing Stone a Natural History of the Escalante Canyons by Thomas Fleischner
White Canyon by Tom McCort
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Post by big_load »

These don't apply well to AZ, but they're fascinating tales of Antarctic trekking and survival:

"Shackleton", by Roland Huntford
"The Worst Journey in the World" by Apsley Cherry-Garrard.

The first is about Ernest Shackleton's two-year ordeal, and the second one is about the fatal Scott expedition. They're both huge books, but utterly gripping.
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Post by azbackpackr »

I have a copy of that Shackleton book. My husband never did finish reading it--he didn't like it too much, so I didn't try. Maybe now I'll give it a whirl. (He and I have different tastes in books!)

I'll add to the list:

Arctic and Alaska stuff:
Arctic Dreams Barry Lopez
Arctic Adventure Peter Freuchen
The Island Within Richard Nelson

Canyon stuff:
Downcanyon Ann Zwinger
Wind in the Rock Ann Zwinger

SW History:
On the Border With Crook John G. Bourke
Cities of Gold Douglas Preston
Death in the Desert: The Fifty Years War for the Great Southwest Paul I. Wellman

SW Utah
In Search of the Old Ones David Roberts
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Post by big_load »

azbackpackr wrote:I have a copy of that Shackleton book. My husband never did finish reading it--he didn't like it too much, so I didn't try. Maybe now I'll give it a whirl. (He and I have different tastes in books!)
I should note that it's technically a biography. Although most of it is about his biggest expedition, there is also quite a bit of background on his life up to that point, as well as what happened afterward.

I definitely support your Barry Lopez recommendation.
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