64 Adventure Books That You Won’t Be Able to Put Down

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You won’t be able to put down these adventure books. These are sure to keep you up late at night and inspire your next great outdoor adventure.

Table of Contents

Whether you’re a runner, hiker, trekker or explorer, we’ve got something for every type of adventurer. From classic adventures, epic poems, and deadly adventures our list of the best adventure books has it all. 

I love having the opportunity to walk in someone else’s shoes. Kinda like Indiana Jones exploring some of the most beautiful trails in the world. Traveling back to the 10th century for a good sword fight. Or even going on adventures with King Arthur! While knowing that I have a warm place to sleep at night that is.

So, let’s dive in to adventure novels you are sure to love!


Extreme Adventures All-Around

These adventure fiction books will have you on the edge of your seat with excitement. Travel to remote islands, base camps, and into white whales as you read through the pages. Enjoy some of the most gripping and exciting stories about hiking and the outdoors below.

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Adventure books, adventure books

Following Atticus

After a close friend died of cancer, middle-aged, overweight, acrophobic newspaperman Tom Ryan decided to pay tribute to her in a most unorthodox manner. Ryan and his friend, miniature schnauzer Atticus M. Finch, would attempt to climb all forty-eight of New Hampshire’s four-thousand-foot peaks twice in one winter while raising money for charity. It was an adventure of a lifetime, leading them across hundreds of miles and deep into an enchanting but dangerous winter wonderland. This is a great adventure book and a must-read.

Adventure books, adventure books

Alone Against the North

Adam Shoalts was no stranger to the wilderness. He had hacked his way through jungles, stared down bears and climbed mountains. But, one spot on the map called out to him irresistibly. Cutting through the forbidding landscape of the Hudson Bay Lowlands is a river no hunter, no explorer, has left any record of paddling. It was this river that Shoalts was obsessively determined to explore. 

Adventure books, adventure books

Dear Bob and Sue

Dear Bob and Sue is the story of our (Matt and Karen Smith) journey to all 59 U.S. National Parks. We wrote the book as a series of emails to our friends, Bob and Sue, in which we share our humorous and quirky observations. It is at times irreverent, unpredictable, and sarcastic, all in the spirit of humor. This is a great read and one of the most enjoyable adventure story books I have read.

Adventure books, adventure books

On the Trail with Boots McFarland

Boots McFarland is an adventurous outdoor-loving cartoon character who has been hiking the trails for over 15 years. The ideas for most of these cartoons come directly from personal trail experiences… real or imagined.

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Adventure books, adventure books

On Trails: An Exploration

While thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail, Robert Moor began to wonder about the paths that lie beneath our feet: How do they form? Why do some improve over time while others fade? What makes us follow or strike off on our own? Over the course of seven years, Moor traveled the globe, exploring trails of all kinds, from the minuscule to the massive. He learned the tricks of master trail-builders, hunted down long-lost Cherokee trails, and traced the origins of our road networks and the Internet.

Adventure books, adventure books

Giant Steps: The Remarkable Story of the Goliath Expedition From Punta Arenas to Russia

In Punta Arenas, Chile, in November 1998, Karl Bushby set out on one of the most remarkable journeys of modern times. His plan is as simple as it is extraordinary—to walk up the Americas, across the Bering Strait, through Asia, Russia, and Europe, back through the Channel Tunnel and returning to Britain in 2011. It is a journey of remarkable endurance—32 kilometers a day, 4,800 kilometers a year, 58,000 kilometers in total. By the time Karl returns home, he will have crossed four continents, 25 countries, a frozen sea, six deserts, and seven mountain ranges. An adventure book doesn’t get more exciting than this.

Adventure books, adventure books

Into the Wild

In April 1992 a young man from a well-to-do family hitchhiked to Alaska and walked alone into the wilderness north of Mt. McKinley. His name was Christopher Johnson McCandless. He had given $25,000 in savings to charity, abandoned his car and most of his possessions, burned all the cash in his wallet, and invented a new life for himself. Four months later, his decomposed body was found by a moose hunter.  How McCandless came to die is the unforgettable story of Into the Wild.

Adventure books, adventure books

Between a Rock and a Hard Place

One of the most extraordinary survival stories ever told—Aron Ralston’s searing account of his six days trapped in one of the most remote spots in America, and how one inspired act of bravery brought him home. It started out as a simple hike in the Utah canyonlands on a warm Saturday afternoon. For Aron Ralston, a twenty-seven-year-old mountaineer and outdoorsman, a walk into the remote Blue John Canyon was a chance to get a break from a winter of solo climbing Colorado’s highest and toughest peaks. He’d earned this weekend vacation, and though he met two charming women along the way, by early afternoon he finally found himself in his element: alone, with just the beauty of the natural world all around him.

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Adventure books, adventure books

Eiger Dreams: Ventures Among Men And Mountains

This book is more about people than about rock and ice―people with that odd, sometimes maniacal obsession with mountain summits that sets them apart from other men and women. Here we meet Adrian the Romanian, determined to be the first of his countrymen to solo Denali; John Gill, climber not of great mountains but of house-sized boulders so difficult to surmount that even demanding alpine climbs seem easy; and many more compelling and colorful characters. In the most intimate piece, “The Devils Thumb,” Krakauer recounts his own near-fatal, ultimately triumphant struggle with solo-madness as he scales Alaska’s Devils Thumb.

Endurance and Ultratrail

Ultramarathons are the ultimate test of endurance and ability. They are classified as any running distance over 50 kilometers and in many cases are set in wild and difficult terrain. These books follow some of the greatest ultra-trail and endurance runners and the amazing feats they have accomplished. These books about unyielding ability and adventure will have you re-thinking your abilities.

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Adventure books, adventure books

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

Jennifer Pharr Davis, a record holder of the FKT (fastest known time) on the Appalachian Trail, reveals the secrets and habits behind endurance as she chronicles her incredible accomplishments in the world of endurance hiking, backpacking, and trail running. She distills complex rituals and histories into easy-to-understand tips and action items that will help you take perseverance to the next level.

Adventure books, adventure books

Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen

Isolated by Mexico’s deadly Copper Canyons, the blissful Tarahumara Indians have honed the ability to run hundreds of miles without rest or injury. In a riveting narrative, award-winning journalist and often-injured runner Christopher McDougall sets out to discover their secrets. In the process, he takes his readers from science labs at Harvard to the sun-baked valleys and freezing peaks across North America, where ever-growing numbers of ultra-runners are pushing their bodies to the limit, and, finally, to a climactic race in the Copper Canyons that pits America’s best ultra-runners against the tribe.

Adventure books, adventure books

Walking Gone Wild: How to Lose Your Age on the Trail

How to Lose Your Age on the Trail, is a fact-filled book about how women can re-invigorate life as they age. Sprinkled with stories of real women who discover a new model of aging with vitality, grace, and a deep connection to life, the book provides the how-to of overcoming obstacles to developing a walking lifestyle. Chapters guide older women to outfit, train, and prepare to thrive walking the road ahead. This is a great adventure book full of information.

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Adventure books, adventure books

The Pants Of Perspective: One woman’s 3,000-kilometre running adventure through the wilds of New Zealand

Anna was never anything like those ‘real’ runners on telly – all spindly limbs, tiny shorts and split times – but when she read about New Zealand’s 3,000 kilometer-long Te Araroa Trail, she began to wonder… perhaps being a ‘real’ runner was overrated. Maybe she could just run it anyway? Traveling alone through New Zealand’s backcountry for 148 days, she scrambled through forests, along ridge-lines, over mountain passes, along beaches, and across swollen rivers. Running up to 52 kilometers in a day, she slept wild most nights and was taken into the homes and hearts of the kiwi people in between.

Adventure books, adventure books

Running Home

For more than a decade, Katie Arnold chased adventure around the world, reporting on extreme athletes who performed outlandish feats – walking high lines 300 meters off the ground without a harness, or running 160 kilometers through the night. She wrote her stories by living them until eventually, life on the thin edge of risk began to seem normal. After she married, Katie and her husband vowed to raise their daughters to be adventurous, too, in the mountains and canyons of New Mexico. But when her father died of cancer, she was forced to confront her own mortality.

Adventure books, adventure books

North: Finding My Way While Running the Appalachian Trail

Scott Jurek is one of the world’s best known and most beloved ultrarunners. Renowned for his remarkable endurance and speed, accomplished on a vegan diet, he’s finished first in nearly all of ultrarunning’s elite events over the course of his career. But after two decades of racing, training, speaking, and touring, Jurek felt an urgent need to discover something new about himself. He embarked on a wholly unique challenge, one that would force him to grow as a person and as an athlete: breaking the speed record for the Appalachian Trail.

Experiencing Camino de Santiago

The Camino de Santiago is one of the most walked trails in the world. It is so much more than just a walking experience, it is a spiritual journey. These adventure books take a look into what the Camino de Santiago really is and what this magnificent trail brings to a hiker’s life.

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Adventure books, adventure books

Walking Home: A Pilgrimage from Humbled to Healed

In order to regain her spiritual footing, Sonia turned to the age-old practice of pilgrimage and set out to walk the legendary Camino de Santiago, an 800-kilometer (500-mile) trek over the Pyrenees and across northern Spain. Day after day she pushed through hunger, exhaustion, and pain to reach her destination. Eventually, mortification of the flesh gave way to spiritual renewal, and she rediscovered the gifts of humility and forgiveness that she needed to repair her world. This is an inspiring adventure book.

Adventure books, adventure books

The Journey in Between

A man at a crossroads. A thousand-mile hike. Life forever changed. Keith Foskett was the definition of restless. Drifting aimlessly, he knew a piece was missing from his life. But when a stranger in a Greek bar tells him about a world-famous pilgrim’s trail, the chance encounter sets Foskett’s life in a new 1,600-kilometer direction. On El Camino de Santiago, the wanderer copes with extreme temperatures, fake faith healers, and insatiable kleptomaniacs. Threatened with arrest for ‘not sleeping’ and suffering from excruciating blisters, Foskett pushes himself to new limits. Can he find what he’s looking for and make it to the other side?

Adventure books, adventure books

Blanket of Stars: Thru-Hiking the Camino de Santiago

An unlikely pilgrim battles agoraphobia to reclaim life beyond the sofa. The 800-kilometer journey along the Camino Frances provides a scenic backdrop to ponder midlife crisis and chronic illness, an empty nest and marital discord, military service and posttraumatic stress, rage and grief, heartbreak and fear – And the way forward. El Camino de Santiago, known fondly as The Way, is a matrix of trails with starting points across Europe leading to the sacred relics of Saint James the Apostle in Santiago de Compostela, Spain. The Way continues to evolve, attracting spiritual seekers with and without religion, thru-hikers, fitness junkies, history buffs, and the curious. This is a great adventure book about conquering your fears.

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Adventure books, adventure books

Camino: Laughter and Tears along Spain’s 500-mile Camino De Santiago

Traveling overseas and backpacking around Europe seemed like an out-of-reach dream for John Clark until he learned of the Camino de Santiago in Spain, an 800-kilometer pilgrimage across the country that dates back more than 1,200 years. With encouragement from family and friends, never having traveled outside the United States, the self-proclaimed homebody from Texas hopped on a plane at age 53 alone and headed for the Iberian Peninsula. It wasn’t just the beginning of a month-long journey, but also, as he would discover, the beginning of a new life.

Adventure books, adventure books

I’m Off Then: Losing and Finding Myself on the Camino de Santiago

Overweight, overworked, and disenchanted, Kerkeling was an unlikely candidate to make the arduous pilgrimage across the Pyrenees to the Spanish shrine of St. James, a 1,200-year-old journey undertaken by nearly 100,000 people every year. But he decided to get off the couch and do it anyway. Lonely and searching for meaning along the way, he began the journal that turned into this utterly frank, engaging book.

Hiking the Appalachian Trail

The Appalachian Trail is one of the most exciting and memorable trails in the world. The trail is known for its intense hiking, nature and epic experiences. This trail is more than just a hiking adventure, for many people, it is much more of a journey. These adventure books are the best way to experience this amazing trail from anywhere.

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Adventure books, adventure books

AWOL on the Appalachian Trail

In 2003, David Miller left his job, family, and friends to fulfill a dream and hike the Appalachian Trail. AWOL on the Appalachian Trail is Miller’s account of this thru-hike along the entire 3500- kilometer from Georgia to Maine. While this book abounds with introspection and perseverance, it also provides useful passages about safety and proper gear, showing a professional hiker’s preparations and tenacity.

Adventure books, adventure books

A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail

Back in America after twenty years in Britain, Bill Bryson decided to reacquaint himself with his native country by walking the 3500- kilometer Appalachian Trail, which stretches from Georgia to Maine. The AT offers an astonishing landscape of silent forests and sparkling lakesand to a writer with the comic genius of Bill Bryson, it also provides endless opportunities to witness the majestic silliness of his fellow human beings. This is one of my favorite adventure books and a great laugh.

Adventure books, adventure books

Sole Searching on the Appalachian Trail

Thru-hike with “Sam I Am,” a newly-retired prison guard who finds himself lost when his two sons leave for the Air Force and his K-9 partner passes away. With no hiking experience, he bought a backpack and a plane ticket to Georgia and started walking home to New England. The journey was long, dangerous and took a toll on his body, but as he lay in his hammock after yet another day of endless climbs and punishing descents, he was determined to finish… or at least make it to day three. This adventure book is inspiring.

Adventure books, adventure books

Becoming Odyssa: Adventures on the Appalachian Trail

After graduating from college, Jennifer isn’t sure what she wants to do with her life. She is drawn to the Appalachian Trail, a 3500-kilometer footpath that stretches from Georgia to Maine. She quickly discovers that thru-hiking is harder than she had imagined: coping with blisters and aching shoulders from the 13-kilogram pack she carries; sleeping on the hard wooden floors of trail shelters; hiking through endless torrents of rain and even a blizzard. With every step she takes, Jennifer transitions from an over-confident college graduate to a student of the trail, braving situations she never imagined before her thru-hike.

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Adventure books, adventure books

Lost on the Appalachian Trail

Join Kyle and his little dog “Katana” as they take you along for every step of their 2,185-mile adventure hiking the entire Appalachian Trail. Confront the terrain, severe weather, injury, dangerous wildlife, and questionable characters as you grow and learn as Kyle did from start to finish of this epic adventure. Make some friends for life, learn the finer points of long-distance hiking, and realize that what you take within your backpack is not nearly as important as what you bring within yourself…

Adventure books, adventure books

Balancing on Blue

Keith Foskett’s dream of escape started with a single step. When the long-distance hiker chose to backpack all 2,180 miles of the Appalachian Trail, he left ordinary life behind for five months. Attempting to keep his English sense of humor alive amidst the bumps and bruises, can Foskett survive his journey of self-discovery to emerge victoriously?.

Adventure books, adventure books

Where’s the Next Shelter?

Where’s the Next Shelter? is the true story of three travelers on the Appalachian Trail, a two thousand mile hike that stretches from Georgia to Maine, told from the perspective of Gary Sizer, a seasoned backpacker and former Marine who quickly finds himself humbled by the endeavor. He teams up with Megan, a sassy college grad whose indomitable spirit eclipses her lack of experience, and Lemmy, a cartoonist from overseas whose off-kilter commentary on the wonders and frustrations of the trail keeps everyone laughing. If you’re looking for a fun adventure book, this is the one for you.

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Adventure books, adventure books

Grandma Gatewood’s Walk: The Inspiring Story of the Woman Who Saved the Appalachian Trail

Emma Gatewood told her family she was going on a walk and left her small Ohio hometown with a change of clothes and less than two hundred dollars. The next anybody heard from her, this genteel, farm-reared, sixty-seven-year-old great-grandmother had walked 800 miles along the 2,050-mile Appalachian Trail. By September 1955 she stood atop Maine’s Mount Katahdin, sang “America, the Beautiful,” and proclaimed, “I said I’ll do it, and I’ve done it.”

Adventure books, adventure books

The Barefoot Sisters: SouthboundThe Barefoot Sisters: Southbound

At the ages of twenty-five and twenty-one, Lucy and Susan Letcher set out to accomplish what thousands of people attempt each year: thru-hike the entire 2,175 miles of the Appalachian Trail. The difference between them and the others? They decided to hike the trail barefoot. Quickly earning themselves the moniker of the Barefoot Sisters, the two begin their adventure at Mount Katahdin and spend eight months making their way to Springer Mountain in Georgia.

Trekking the John Muir Trail

Exploring one of the most beautiful trails in America has never been this exciting. These adventure books will inspire and educate you about the John Muir Trail that passes through some of the most iconic National Parks in America.

Adventure books, adventure books

Highs and Lows on the John Muir Trail

This lively account of a woman’s trek on the John Muir Trail, which won the Best Outdoor Book award from the Outdoor Writers Association of California in 2015, is a must-read for those who plan to hike the trail. Armchair adventurers will enjoy the tale as well. Along the way, trekkers will see how she and her husband met obstacles head-on, lightened their load, planned meals and managed daily logistics for more than three weeks on the trail.

Adventure books, adventure books

Almost Somewhere: Twenty-Eight Days on the John Muir Trail

John Muir had written of the Sierra Nevada as a “vast range of light,” and this was exactly what Roberts was looking for. But traveling with two girlfriends, one experienced and unflappable and the other inexperienced and bulimic, she quickly discovered that she needed a new frame of reference. Her story of a month in the backcountry—confronting bears, snowy passes, broken equipment, injuries, and strange men—is as much about finding a woman’s way into an outdoor adventure as it is about the natural world she so eloquently describes.

Adventure books, adventure books

Trudge: A Midlife Crisis on the John Muir Trail

Lori Oliver-Tierney is every woman with a dream. She is fifty, asthmatic, overweight, with arthritic knees. And like so many married women with children, she’s lost herself. When she decides to hike the John Muir Trail, she’s sure it will help her reconnect with the adventurous girl inside. Trudging along, Lori walks most of the trail alone, and eventually loses her way. Lost on the trail Lori is forced to dig deep into her soul to find the strength to go on. But will inner strength be enough?

Hiking the Pacific Crest Trail

The Pacific Crest Trail is a beautiful trail that is packed with adventure and the opportunity to find what nature has to offer. These adventure books look at all the amazing things that the Pacific Crest Trail has to offer, from learning curves to self-realization and character building.

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Adventure books, adventure books

Walking Thru: A Couple’s Adventure on the Pacific Crest Trail

Bored and fed up with life, staring down the 50th birthday, Mike Tyler was looking for a change. Life had become routinized and unexciting. Maybe it was a mid-life crisis, or maybe just a yearning for one last big adventure. Mike decides to try hiking from Mexico to Canada on the Pacific Crest Trail, just to see what happens. Mike convinces his wife, Margo, to join him. Together they embark on a five-month hike full of anticipation. They hike through some of the most stunning and remote places in the country on a trail full of unique, offbeat characters. But the trail had, even more, to offer than either of them had anticipated.

Adventure books, adventure books

Thru-Hiking Will Break Your Heart: An Adventure on the Pacific Crest Trail

Carrot Quinn fears that she’s become addicted to the internet. In a desperate move, she breaks away from everything to walk 2,660 miles from Mexico to Canada on the Pacific Crest Trail. It will be her first long-distance hike. In the wilderness she happens upon and becomes close with an eclectic group of strangers- people she wouldn’t have chanced to meet in the “regular world” but who are brought together, here on the trail, by their one common goal: make it to Canada before the snow flies.

Adventure books, adventure books

The Last Englishman: A Thru-Hiking Adventure on the Pacific Crest Trail

Born traveler Keith Foskett had thousands of miles of thru-hiking experience when he prepared for his toughest challenge yet: a grueling 2,640-mile hike from Mexico to Canada. In a six-month adventure along America’s Pacific Crest Trail, he crossed the arid expanses of California’s deserts, the towering peaks of Oregon’s volcanic landscape, and the dense forests of Washington. Battling phobias of bears, snakes, critters, and camping in the woods after dark, can Foskett find new ways to achieve his ultimate goal when the worst winter in years bears down on the trail?

Adventure books, adventure books

Racing Winter on the Pacific Crest Trail

Kyle and his little dog “Katana” are at it again as they take you along for every step of their 2,650-mile adventure hiking the Pacific Crest Trail! Embark on another grand adventure across the most diverse, beautiful, and unforgiving terrain in North America. Prepare to feel the blistering heat of the southwestern deserts as you dodge rattlesnakes in the never-ending quest for water. Climb into thin air and the dizzying heights of the Sierra Nevada alpine while post-holing through miles of treacherous snowpack

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Adventure books, adventure books

Hikertrash: Life on the Pacific Crest Trail

Teetering awkwardly on the brink of insanity, unable to handle life in snowy, cold, ultra-conservative North Idaho, Carl and Erin sold their house and set out in search of a new place to call home. Suddenly finding themselves completely free of responsibilities, jobless, and with a little spare cash in the bank, it didn’t take long before their serious search for a new life took some unexpected twists and turns.

Adventure books, adventure books

Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail

At twenty-two, Cheryl Strayed thought she had lost everything. In the wake of her mother’s death, her family scattered and her own marriage was soon destroyed. Four years later, with nothing more to lose, she made the most impulsive decision of her life. With no experience or training, driven only by blind will, she would hike more than a thousand miles of the Pacific Crest Trail from the Mojave Desert through California and Oregon to Washington State—and she would do it alone.

Exploring the Andes

The Andes is a diverse landscape with everything from volcanoes to remote unexplored areas to discover. These great adventure books will give you an inside view into what hiking and exploring in the Andes is really like.

Adventure books, adventure books

Enduring Patagonia

Patagonia is a strange and terrifying place, a vast tract of land shared by Argentina and Chile where the violent weather spawned over the southern Pacific charges through the Andes with gale-force winds, roaring clouds, and stinging snow. Even today, the Patagonian Andes remain mysterious and remote, a place where horrible storms and ruthless landscapes discourage all but the most devoted pilgrims from paying tribute to the daunting and dangerous peaks.

Adventure books, adventure books

Eight Feet in the Andes: Travels with a Mule in Unknown Peru

The eight feet referenced in the title belong to Dervla Murphy, her nine-year-old daughter, and an elegant mule, who together clambered the length of Peru, from Cajamarca near the border with Ecuador to Cuzco, the ancient Inca capital—traveling over 1,300 miles in high altitudes. Despite extreme discomfort and occasional danger, mother and daughter, a formidable duo, were unflagging in their sympathetic response to the perilous beauty and impoverished people of the Andes.

Adventure books, adventure books

Touching the Void: The True Story of One Man’s Miraculous Survival

Joe Simpson and his climbing partner, Simon Yates, had just reached the top of a 21,000-foot peak in the Andes when disaster struck. Simpson plunged off the vertical face of an ice ledge, breaking his leg. In the hours that followed, darkness fell and a blizzard raged as Yates tried to lower his friend to safety. Finally, Yates was forced to cut the rope, moments before he would have been pulled to his own death. How both men overcame the torments of those harrowing days is an epic tale of fear, suffering, adventure, and survival, and a poignant testament to unshakable courage and friendship.

Adventuring the Himalayas

The Himalayas are home to some of the most dangerous mountains in the world. With its many cultural icons and some of the most remote and unexplored places in the world, adventure books about the Himalayas are a gripping read. These books will shed light on one of the most unique, dangerous and beautiful places in the world.

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Adventure books, adventure books

Getting High: The Annapurna Circuit in Nepal

What is the best way for the average person to authentically experience the world’s greatest mountain range–the Himalayas? Fortunately, there is now a good answer. The Annapurna Circuit in Nepal is the most popular footpath in Asia. Its genius lies in its design. This Circuit is widely considered one of the world’s great treks, and mortals from all around the world are coming to Nepal for the unique chance to ‘get high’. Bill Walker (‘Skywalker’) struggled his way through the Annapurna Circuit in 2012.

Adventure books, adventure books

The Nepali Flat

Take a man from sea level. Place him in the high Himalaya. Then laugh at him! Join Gordon in Nepal as he drags his ‘heavy arse’ over the Himalayas in this hilarious, adventure-soaked account of the Three Passes Trek. Together with guide Subash and porter Nima, Gordon tackles high passes in excess of 17,500 feet and explains how high altitude affects a mildly-overweight bloke from sea level in the tropics. Each part of the journey brings new challenges including sub-freezing temperatures, almost falling into a crevasse, and alarmingly warm beer.

Adventure books, adventure books

Islands in the Snow: A journey to explore Nepal’s trekking peaks

Two days east of Lukla was a pleasant yak pasture surrounded by high peaks. When Col. Jim Roberts set out to look for it in 1953, he ended up making the first ascent of Mera Peak and sowing the seeds of Himalayan tourism. Mera Peak has become a popular goal for trekkers and novice mountaineers, but few people climb to its true summit, and fewer still travel beyond it to find the secret yak pasture that sparked Roberts’ journey. Fifty years after Roberts, Mark Horrell embarked on an adventure to follow in his footsteps, climb the two trekking peaks at either end of the valley, and resolve a long-standing mystery about Mera Peak’s height. This is a wonderful read and one of my favourite adventure books.

Adventure books, adventure books

Into Thin Air: A Personal Account of the Mt. Everest Disaster

A bank of clouds was assembling on the not-so-distant horizon, but journalist-mountaineer Jon Krakauer, standing on the summit of Mt. Everest, saw nothing that “suggested that a murderous storm was bearing down.” He was wrong. The storm, which claimed five lives and left countless more–including Krakauer’s–in guilt-ridden disarray, would also provide the impetus for Into Thin Air, Krakauer’s epic account of the May 1996 disaster.

Hiker’s Memoirs

There is nothing better than a hiker’s memoir to give you the motivation and inspiration. Inspiration to try new things and get better at what you do. These hiking memoirs are the perfect way to become a better hiker. Experience the best of adventure and hiking books with these hiking memoirs.

Adventure books, adventure books

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

Disillusioned by the corporate lifestyle, David finds himself unemployed and desperate for change. 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 adventure 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.

Adventure books, adventure books

Home is Forward: Hiking and Travel Adventures from Around the World

Have you ever wanted to visit Machu Picchu, or witness the Northern Lights? To explore remote landscapes where no boot has tread, no shutter ever snapped? You can…Before he became Green Giant on the Appalachian Trail, Gary Sizer was a Marine, a computer nerd, and a guy with a problem. No matter how much time he spends outside, it’s never enough.

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Adventure books, adventure books

Thirst: 2600 Miles to Home

“In her new memoir, Thirst: 2600 Miles to Home, Heather, whose trail name is “Anish,” conveys not only her athleticism and wilderness adventures, but also shares her distinct message of courage–her willingness to turn away from the predictability of a more traditional life in an effort to seek out what most fulfills her. Amid the rigors of the trail–pain, fear, loneliness, and dangers–she discovers the greater rewards of community and of self, conquering her doubts and building confidence”.

Adventure books, adventure books

Girl in the Woods: A Memoir

In this inspiring memoir, Aspen chronicles her adventure, a five-month trek that was ambitious, dangerous, and transformative. A nineteen-year-old girl alone and lost, she conquered desolate mountain passes and met rattlesnakes, bears, and fellow desert pilgrims. On the trail, she found her strength, and after a thousand miles of solitude, she found a man who helped her learn to love and trust again—and heal.

Adventure books, adventure books

I Hike

“I never set out to hike 10,000 miles. It just sort of happened over the course of a decade.” And so goes Lawton Grinter’s compelling collection of short stories that have been over ten years and 10,000 trail miles in the making. Between jobs and in search of something more, Lawton Grinter spent the better part of a decade adventuring America’s longest trails. In doing so he came face to face with things that go bump in the night, the kindness of strangers, a close encounter with hypothermia and the absurd rights of passage common to the eccentric people that call themselves long-distance hikers. This a great adventure book.

Adventure books, adventure books

Breaking Trail: A Climbing Life

A legendary trailblazer, Arlene Blum defied the climbing establishment of the 1970s by leading the first all-female teams on successful ascents of Mount McKinley and Annapurna and by being the first American woman to attempt Mount Everest. At the same time, her groundbreaking scientific work challenged gender stereotypes in the academic community and led to important legislation banning carcinogens in children’s sleepwear.

Related Reading: The Best Books To Read Before You Travel

Adventure books, adventure books

Tracks: A Woman’s Solo Trek Across 1700 Miles of Australian Outback

Enduring sweltering heat, fending off poisonous snakes and lecherous men, chasing her camels when they get skittish and nursing them when they are injured, Davidson emerges as an extraordinarily courageous heroine driven by a love of Australia’s landscape, empathy for its indigenous people, and a willingness to cast away the trappings of her former identity.

Adventure books, adventure books

The Salt Path: A Memoir

Just days after Raynor Winn learns that Moth, her husband of thirty-two years, is terminally ill, their house and farm are taken away, along with their livelihood. With nothing left and little time, they make the brave and impulsive decision to walk the 630 miles of the sea-swept South West Coast Path, from Somerset to Dorset, through Devon and Cornwall. Carrying only the essentials for survival on their backs, they live wild in the ancient, weathered landscape of cliffs, sea, and sky.

Our Favorite Trails

Like every hiker, there are some trails that we favour. These adventure books are about some of the best trails that I have done, some even more than once.

Adventure books, adventure books

Two Miles An Hour

Beginning at retirement and continuing for ten years, the author began a series of five long-distance hikes. He kept careful records and discovered that no matter where he was or what the terrain was like, he always averaged two miles an hour! A friend joins him on his fourth walk: the West Highland Way in Scotland, 110 miles of breathtaking scenery and wacky adventures as they hike from Glasgow north to Fort William.

Adventure books, adventure books

My Journey around Mont Blanc

Dan Karmi is a software businessman from Israel who had had virtually no contact with the outdoors, even in childhood. To celebrate his seventieth birthday, at the invitation of a neighbor, he decided to leave his protected office environment and try engaging with nature for the first time. A journey that starts as a normal tourist walk to enjoy the well-known scenery of the Alps turns into a major challenge to overcome the limitations of physical age, loneliness, and lack of knowledge of mountain surroundings.

Recommended Reading: Hiking for Beginners: How to Get Started.

Adventure books, adventure books

The Last Hillwalker

This is a book for everyone who truly loves the mountains and wild places. Join John Burns in his first faltering steps as a schoolboy in the English Lake District through to climbing adventures in the great ranges of the world and finally to his return to his beloved Highlands. This is a story told with humor, humility and passion, a tale that displays a deeper understanding of what it is to have a relationship with nature.

Adventure books, adventure books

My Journey around Mont Blanc

Dan Karmi is a software businessman from Israel who had had virtually no contact with the outdoors, even in childhood. To celebrate his seventieth birthday, at the invitation of a neighbor, he decided to leave his protected office environment and try engaging with nature for the first time. A journey that starts as a normal tourist walk to enjoy the well-known scenery of the Alps turns into a major challenge to overcome the limitations of physical age, loneliness, and lack of knowledge of mountain surroundings.

Adventure books, adventure books

For the Love of Lemurs: My Life in the Wilds of Madagascar

In 1986, primatologist Patricia Chapple Wright was given a seemingly impossible task: to travel to the rainforests of Madagascar and find the greater bamboo lemur, a species that hadn’t been seen in the wild for thirty years. Not only did Wright discover that the primate still existed but that it lived alongside a completely new species. What followed was a love affair with an animal and a country that continues to this day.

Raw Wilderness

These are stories from people who faced, experienced and studied the wilderness in its purest form. There are some adventurers out there who don’t mind going outdoors long-term. Without the technology and the comforts, we are very used to. Read how they managed to survive and what they learned at the edge of civilization. These adventure books are gripping and exciting.

Adventure books, adventure books

Desert Solitaire: A Season in the Wilderness

When Desert Solitaire was first published in 1968, it became the focus of a nationwide cult. Rude and sensitive. Thought-provoking and mystical. Angry and loving. This is a rare view of a quest to experience nature in its purest form — the silence, the struggle, the overwhelming beauty. But this is also the gripping, anguished cry of a man of character who challenges the growing exploitation of the wilderness by oil and mining interests, as well as by the tourist industry.

Adventure books, adventure books

The Hidden Life of Trees: What They Feel, How They Communicate―Discoveries from A Secret World

Are trees social beings? In this international bestseller, forester, and author Peter Wohlleben convincingly makes the case that, yes, the forest is a social network. He draws on groundbreaking scientific discoveries to describe how trees are like human families: tree parents live together with their children, communicate with them, support them as they grow, share nutrients with those who are sick or struggling, and even warn each other of impending dangers. Wohlleben also shares his deep love of woods and forests, explaining the amazing processes of life, death, and regeneration he has observed in his woodland

Recommended Reading: 14 of the Best Eco-Friendly Gifts for Travellers That Give Back

Adventure books, adventure books

How to Shit in the Woods

World changes come fast and furious, and in the backcountry, it is no different. The practice of “packing-it-out,” adopted to protect high use areas and fragile eco-systems, is here to stay. We are now often urged to haul our poop home. She covers the most current solutions to the health risks of drinking straight from wilderness waterways; presents a raft of natural substitutes for the purist swearing off toilet tissue, and offers a wealth of new recommendations for ladies who must make do without a loo.

Adventure books, adventure books

Woodswoman: Living Alone in the Adirondack Wilderness

Ecologist Anne LaBastille created the life that many people dream about. When she and her husband divorced, she needed a place to live. Through luck and perseverance, she found the ideal spot: a 20-acre parcel of land in the Adirondack mountains, where she built the cozy, primitive log cabin that became her permanent home. Miles from the nearest town, LaBastille had to depend on her wits, ingenuity, and the help of generous neighbors for her survival.

Adventure books, adventure books

Wilderness, The Gateway To The Soul: Spiritual Enlightenment Through Wilderness

As our culture removes itself from the natural world, something very essential has been lost. But there is still one place we can go to get it back. Come along on a spiritual journey, away from a chaotic world of details, obligations, smartphones and noisy machines, to a place that is unspoiled, untamed, and free. Backpacking mostly solo, Stillman leads us to the heart of the American Wilderness, where nature works her magic to heal and transform your life.

Adventure books, adventure books

Braving It: A Father, a Daughter, and an Unforgettable Journey into the Alaskan Wild

Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, home to only a handful of people, is a harsh and lonely place. So when James Campbell’s cousin Heimo Korth asked him to spend a summer building a cabin in the rugged Interior, Campbell hesitated about inviting his fifteen-year-old daughter, Aidan, to join him: Would she be able to withstand clouds of mosquitoes, the threat of grizzlies, bathing in an ice-cold river, and hours of grueling labor peeling and hauling logs? This is a great family orientated adventure book that will inspire you to do something great with your own family.

Making your way through this fantastic adventure book list is the perfect way to shake the restlessness when you aren’t out on the trail

64 adventure and hiking books pin
This post has been updated and republished.