The Snake and the Salamander is a wonderfully illustrated book about reptiles and amphibians, by a veteran New York Department of Environmental Conservation herpetologist.
The new edition of Yankee Rock and Ice describes Matt Horner’s efforts to repeat a notoriously difficult ice climb called Gorillas in the Mist on Poke-O-Moonshine’s cliffs.
Syracuse University Press recently sent us one of its new books, Graves of Upstate New York by Chuck D’Imperio. The book provides brief biographies of one hundred notable personages buried in upstate New York, which the author defines as all of the state north of New York City. It also describes how to get to each of the gravesites. Part three of the book is titled “Adirondacks and North Country.” It features ten people, but only three of them are buried within the Blue Line. Can you guess who they are? OK, I’ll tell you. John Brown. The fiery abolitionist >>More
The new volume collects nearly sixty essays by an esteemed Adirondack historian.
Each year the American Alpine Club publishes a little book titled Accidents in North American Climbing, on the theory that reading about accidents is one way to avoid them. Usually, most of the reports are from out west or Alaska. Occasionally, an accident in the Adirondacks makes the book. This year, however, a full three pages are devoted to our region, with four mishaps described in detail. All occurred in 2016 (the year covered by the book). I will summarize them below, using the headlines from the book. Leader Fall on Ice: Thin Ice, Inadequate Protection We wrote about this >>More
I’m looking forward to gathering with fellow writers for a book signing at the Mountaineer in Keene Valley on Thursday, though I may feel a little out of place among the likes of Russell Banks, Chase Twitchell, Bill McKibben, and Jerry Jenkins. The Mountaineer recently expanded its book department and hopes that Thursday’s book signing will become an annual event. The signing will take place from 5-7 p.m. Green Point Foods will provide light refreshments, and Stan Oliva will provide the music. Check out this story in the Adirondack Daily Enterprise for more details and a complete list of the >>More
This summer W.W. Norton plans to publish Classic Hikes of North America: 25 Breathtaking Treks in the United States and Canada. Judging by the publicity materials, it should be a magnificent-looking book, with detailed maps and more than two hundred color photos. Adirondack hikers may be disappointed to learn that no hikes in the Park made the cut. In fact, only four of the twenty-five hikes are east of the Mississippi. The hike closest to the Adirondacks is the Presidential Range Traverse in the White Mountains of New Hampshire. The other eastern hikes are the Art Loeb Trail in North >>More
Although you can’t learn rock climbing from a book, you’ll find a lot of rock-climbing manuals at EMS in Lake Placid, the Mountaineer in Keene Valley, and other outdoors stores. These books are no substitute for experience, but they do reinforce lessons you’re likely to hear from professional guides and veteran climbers. I own several such books. One of my favorites was written by Lake Placid’s own Don Mellor: A Trailside Guide: Rock Climbing, published by W.W. Norton & Co. Recently, I finished a classic of the genre, Basic Rockcraft by Royal Robbins, from way back in 1971. Royal Robbins >>More
In the July/August issue of the Adirondack Explorer, a Montana angler writes about falling in love with fishing the Adirondacks. He was introduced to the region by another love, Lisa Densmore, a freelance writer and photographer who grew up in Saranac Lake. Well, Lisa has just published Hiking the Adirondacks, which describes forty-two hikes from all parts of the Adirondack Park. Released by Falcon Guides, the book sells for $18.95. It can be purchased in stores or online. Lisa is more than qualified to offer us advice: she has been hiking in the Adirondacks since she was a young girl. >>More
Bob Marshall was one of the original Adirondack Forty-Sixers, but he thought he was born too late. He would have preferred to have lived in the nineteenth century, before the Adirondacks were overrun by civilization. Well, Bob is now part of the twenty-first century. John Warren, the guy behind the Adirondack Almanack, reports in his blog that a number of old Adirondack books have been digitized and put online. Among them is Marshall’s 1922 booklet The High Peaks of the Adirondacks. It can be read online or downloaded for free. Marshall wrote the booklet after he and his younger brother, >>More