Nine Amazing Outdoor Adventure Books You Need to Read

These outdoor adventure books will entertain, thrill and inspire you!

Looking for good outdoor adventure books to read this summer, or at another point in the year? Here’s a few I would recommend.

A few are classics and I believe all of them might be someday. They will entertain, thrill and inspire you! I believe they are worth your time.

My list

⁠1. “Dove,” by Robin L. Graham.

A teenager sails around the world solo and meets the love of his life. As part of his journey, he spends time at Nanuya Levu, which is a remote and beautiful island in Fiji. The afterward was the best part for me. ⁠

⁠2. “Touching the Void,” by Joe Simpson.

A classic mountaineering survival story that I reference in Called to the Wild that includes betrayal, survival and redemption.

⁠3. “A Walk In the Woods” by Bill Bryson.

A hilarious account of Bill Bryson thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail. If it was good enough for Robert Redford to star in a movie about it, it’s good enough for you to read :)⁠

⁠4. “Denali’s Howl” by Andy Hall.

An intriguing mountaineering story set on Alaska’s famous peak.⁠ This is considered the deadliest accident on Denali…kind of the Into Thin Air of Denali (see number nine on this list).

⁠5. “Astoria” by Peter Stark.

A riveting historical expedition disaster story—what could have happened to Lewis and Clark if things hadn’t gone so well.⁠

⁠6. “Emerald Mile” by Kevin Fedarko.

This rafting story tells the harrowing tale of the fastest and wildest descent of the Grand Canyon at high water. ⁠

⁠7. “Colorado 14er Disasters” by Mark Scott-Nash.

Entertaining, albeit tragic, lessons about hiking Colorado’s high peaks that some people approach as merely “a stairmaster with a view,” as Lou Dawson once said. More than just good arm-chair adventure quarterbacking, these stories entertain but also teach you along the way.

⁠8. “Blind Descent” by Brian Dickinson.

This Mount Everest survival features Brian Dickinson, a former US Navy Air Rescue Swimmer, whose passion became mountaineering. A story about a Christian mountaineer, which can be pretty rare in the outdoor literary canon.

⁠9. “Into Thin Air” by Jon Krakauer.

Probably the most famous mountaineering book of all time, the excellent prose makes this read more like literature than adventure chatter. I found it interesting reading it lately as I now the same age as the author and my perspective was similar. ⁠

⁠What’s your number 10?

Did you catch that there is only 9 outdoor adventure books on my list? ⁠What outdoor adventure book would you recommend to be the 10th book on my list? Reply in the comments.

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