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5 Great Books for Exploring Our National Parks

5 Great Books for Exploring Our National Parks

On August 25th, America’s National Parks celebrate their birthday, and as a celebration entry fees are waived!

It’s a great opportunity to take advantage of some of the best places our country has to offer. Sweeping views, poignant history, and crystal lakes and seashores – the parks really have it all.

Here are some books to make you feel like you’re there if you can’t make it to a park on the 25th.

Lassoing the Sun: A Year in America’s National Parks by Mark Woods

When Mark Woods wins a fellowship to spend a year traveling in the National Parks he doesn’t expect that his Mom will die that same year. What follows is an introspective and beautiful exploration of what the parks mean to him as a man, and us as a nation.

The National Parks: America’s Best Idea by Dayton Duncan

This is the companion book to the Ken Burns PBS series of the same name, and is every bit as wonderful. It’s a gorgeous book, and would also make a great gift.

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

Grandma Gatewood’s story will make you want to throw a few pairs of Keds and a sandwich in a canvas bag and set off, just like she did. One of the original through-walkers of the Appalachian trail, Grandma will make any of your National Park adventure ideas seem possible.

The Big Burn: Teddy Roosevelt and the Fire that Saved America by Timothy Egan

This book goes in-depth on Teddy Roosevelt and Gifford Pinchot, and examines how they turned public opinion in favor of nationally held lands. It’s an excellent read if you like the type of nonfiction that reads like fiction.

PS: This is free if you have Kindle Unlimited! You can join Amazon Kindle Unlimited with a 30-Day Free Trial

, and we will make some money! Yay!

The Shining by Stephen King

Danny and his parents overwinter at The Overlook Hotel, high in the mountains just outside of Rocky Mountain National Park. The book is so much better than the movie, and perfect if you like to read spooky books on hot summer nights.

Have you visited any parks this summer? What’s your favorite?

About The Author


Jill is a life long book worm who lives and reads near Washington, D.C. Despite rampant fires and crime on the metro she will always be a loyal rider because public transportation gives her two hours to read every day. She’ll devour everything from YA fiction to obscure non-fiction texts. Jill has two elementary school aged kids who she is training to be junior bookworms. They day when the Scholastic book order form comes home is the best day of the month for all of them.

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