The internet has spoken once again and declared this “National Read an eBook Week” so I answered it’s call in true backpacker fashion: Find the best eBooks for hikers. I’m sure you’ll have some of your favorites to add to the list, but here are some prime choices:
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. With a storyteller’s ear for fascinating detail and description, Davis takes readers along as she trains and sets her record, analyzing and trail-testing the theories and methodologies espoused by her star-studded roster of mentors. She distills complex rituals and histories into easy-to-understand tips and action items that will help you take perseverance to the next level. The Pursuit of Endurance empowers readers to unlock phenomenal endurance and leverage newfound grit to achieve personal bests in everything from sports and family to the boardroom. Learn More >>
Thru-Hiking Will Break Your Heart: An Adventure on the Pacific Crest Trail
Carrot Quinn fears that she’s become addicted to the internet. The city makes her numb, and she’s having trouble connecting with others. 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 desert of Southern California Carrot faces many challenges, both physical and emotional: pain, injury, blisters, aching cold and searing heat, dehydration, exhaustion, loneliness. 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. Learn More >>
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. Ultimately, she realizes that records are merely a catalyst, giving her purpose, focus, and a goal to strive toward. Learn More >>
The Psychological and Emotional Guide to Successfully Thru-Hiking The Appalachian Trail
While the AT undoubtedly presents extraordinary physical challenges, it is the psychological and emotional struggles that drive people off the trail. Conquering these mental obstacles is the key to success. This groundbreaking book focuses on the most important and overlooked piece of equipment of all- the gear between one’s ears.
Filled with first-hand, touching yet humorous vignettes and down-to-earth advice that both instructs and inspires, Appalachian Trials gives readers the mental road map they’ll need to hike from Springer Mountain to Mt.Katahdin. Learn More >>
Bliss(ters): How I walked from Mexico to Canada one summer
Just before her 40th birthday, Gail Francis quit her perfectly good job and set out to hike one of the great trails of the world. Carrying everything she needed on her back, Francis spent five months walking from Mexico to Canada along the Pacific Crest Trail. Along the way, she lost her pack scrambling over scree in the desert, struggled to navigate high mountain passes, and wore the soles off her boots trekking across lava fields — all within some of the most pristine wilderness in the nation. Though she set out alone, her story includes an eclectic cast of characters. From the man walking the entire 2,700 miles in a series of twenty-six wedding dresses, to the woman making the journey in the company of her pet mouse, Francis learned to count on her fellow hikers for entertainment as well as a few important life lessons. Learn More >>
Captain Blue on the Blue Blazes: The First Solo Thru-Hike of Ohio’s 1,444 Mile Buckeye Trail
Imagine walking 1,444 miles with a backpack carrying the bare necessities of life, 26 maps, and a whole lot of grit. When three-time Appalachian Trail Hiker, Andy “Captain Blue” Niekamp decided to hike Ohio’s Buckeye Trail, he took on the challenge of his life. On this 88-day adventure, Captain Blue found things he didn’t know he had: a Buckeye Trail family who assisted and encouraged him; a home state rich with scenic beauty and history; the physical, mental, and emotional stamina to travel Ohio alone and on foot. Readers will enjoy the trail tales of Captain Blue, past and present, and his knack for bringing humor and good-natured reflection to a hiker’s experiences in the elements: the cold, snow, wind, rain, heat, and humidity of springtime in Ohio; the physical test of walking for miles every day on a variety of treadways; the unpredictability of nature; and the sincere generosity of strangers. Learn More >>
Note: The book descriptions in this post come directly from the author/publisher to give you the most short, accurate description possible.