Being an outdoor enthusiast, you will naturally want to be outside as much as possible. But between weather, time, and other commitments, you may not make it outside as much as you would like to. Fortunately, there is one way for you to escape outside without going outside: books. Here are the top 10 novels you should read to get your outdoor fix.
1. “The Alchemist” by Paulo Coelho
This novel has really become a must-read for everyone. The story is about an Andalusian shepherd who travels the world looking for material treasures before learning that life is more valuable than gold. It is inspiring and may encourage you to follow your own dreams.
2. “A Walk in the Woods” by Bill Bryson
If you have not had the pleasure of reading any of Bill Bryson’s books before, you are in for a treat. His real-life first-person accounts are always tinged with a solid mix of humor and reality. A Walk in the Woods follows his adventures on the Appalachian Trail with his friend.
3. “Into the Wild” by Jon Krakauer
I would like to caution readers before reading this book that the story should not be viewed romantically. I don’t want to spoil the book if you don’t know the story, but needless to say, do not follow in the protagonist’s footsteps, but instead appreciate his exploration of nature. It was made into a movie a few years ago.
4. “Wild” by Cheryl Strayed
This book was adapted into a movie a few years ago as well. It follows the story of a woman who embarks on a journey of the Pacific Crest Trail with little preparation. It is a journey of self-discovery.
5. “The Wilderness World of John Muir” by John Muir
There are few historical figures known to love nature as much as John Muir. This book is a collection of his most famous writings, sharing his experiences in Yosemite and the Sierra Mountains. Muir’s writing is nothing short of inspiring.
6. “Walden” by Henry David Thoreau
Sometimes stories of adventure do not need to feature life or death situations or tragedy, and often the revelation of man’s relationship to nature is just as powerful. Walden is not the fastest read out there and does require patience, but if you can stick it out, you will be well rewarded.
7. “Wind, Sand, & Stars” by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
Saint-Exupéry is better-known for his children’s book, The Little Prince, but this book is still an essential read. Using his same sharp way with words, he gives us a tale of adventure as he flies across the Pyrenees in the 1920s, suffering from engine trouble and other dangers.
8. “The Snow Leopard” by Peter Matthiessen
This book will offer you not just an experience of nature, but also a spiritual journey across the mountains, taking in the amazing beauty of the Himalayas while trying to catch a glimpse of the legendary and elusive snow leopard.
9. “Jimmy Bluefeather: A Novel” by Kim Heacox
This novel is about a 95-year-old Tlingit native who is the last surviving canoe carver in his village. Following an accident, his grandson begins to help him build his last canoe before they venture out on the water to test it out. This book is a wonderful read for many reasons, but the main character is definitely one of them. He is warm and charming to read about, as well as very likable.
10. “Wahb: The Biography of a Grizzly” by Ernest Thompson Seton
Unlike the other books on this list, Wahb follows the story of a bear as he grows up in Yellowstone National Park. The story is definitely heart-wrenching and will give you a different perspective on grizzlies.
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