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SMITHSONIAN JOURNEYS

National Parks of the West by Private Plane

READING AND TRAVEL GUIDE

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Enrich your travels with reading! Here's a hand-picked list prepared for your journey in conjunction with the book experts at Longitude.

Essential Reading

Item EXUSW202. Buy these 4 items as a set for $52 including shipping, 15% off the retail price.
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Desert Solitaire

Desert Solitaire

by Edward Abbey

  • NATURAL HISTORY
  • 1990
  • PAPER
  • 303 PAGES
  • FAVORITE

One of the great works on the value of the desert, eloquent and laugh-out-loud funny. Although Abbey writes specifically about his experiences as a ranger at Arches National Park outside Moab, Utah, his message is universal. (DES02, $16.00)

Rising from the Plains

Rising from the Plains

by John McPhee

  • NATURAL HISTORY
  • 1986
  • PAPER
  • 213 PAGES

McPhee's elegant and accessible essays show the geology of the Rockies through his travels with U.S. Geological Survey scientist David Love. (USW18, $16.00)

The Exploration of the Colorado River and Its Canyons

The Exploration of the Colorado River and Its Canyons

by John Wesley Powell

  • EXPLORATION
  • 2003
  • PAPER
  • 397 PAGES

The classic tale of adventure and exploration of the rivers and canyonlands of the Colorado Plateau, originally published in 1875 -- and still terrific reading for any traveler to the Grand Canyon. (USW80, $17.00)

Western and Central USA Map

by Map Art Maps

  • 2001
  • MAP

A foldup map of the entire western half of the United States at a scale of 1:2.6 million. (USA23, $4.95)

 

Crucible for Conservation, The Struggle for Grand Teton National Park


by Robert W. Righter

  • HISTORY
  • 1982
  • PAPER
  • 200 PAGES

A history of the establishment of Grand Teton National Park, taking into account the numerous disputes involving entrepreneurs, conservationists, government officials and local ranchers. (USW307, $8.95)

The Carving of Mount Rushmore

The Carving of Mount Rushmore


by Rex Alan Smith

  • HISTORY
  • 1994
  • PAPER
  • 415 PAGES

An engrossing account of the carving of Mount Rushmore, its sculptor Gutzon Borglum and others involved in the creation of the monument. With 50 black-and-white photos. (USP07, $22.95)

Beyond the Hundredth Meridian, John Wesley Powell and the Second Opening of the West

Beyond the Hundredth Meridian, John Wesley Powell and the Second Opening of the West


by Wallace Stegner

  • EXPLORATION
  • 1992
  • PAPER
  • 438 PAGES

The classic, Pulitzer Prize-winning biography of explorer John Wesley Powell by the great Wallace Stegner, first published in 1954. It's both an adventure and an insightful look at the politics of development in the American West. (USW78, $17.00)

In Search of the Old Ones, Exploring the Anasazi World of the Southwest

In Search of the Old Ones, Exploring the Anasazi World of the Southwest


by David D. Roberts

  • ARCHAEOLOGY
  • 1997
  • PAPER
  • 271 PAGES

An exuberant, engaging account of archaeological adventures in the desert Southwest. Roberts investigates the factors that may have led to the demise of the Anasazi civilization and looks into longstanding controversies. (USW157, $16.00)

Undaunted Courage, Meriwether Lewis, Thomas Jefferson, and the Opening of the American West

Undaunted Courage, Meriwether Lewis, Thomas Jefferson, and the Opening of the American West


by Stephen Ambrose

  • EXPLORATION
  • 1997
  • PAPER
  • 528 PAGES

Ambrose recreates the high adventure and politics of late 18th-century America in this classic history, rich in details of Native American life, geography, flora and fauna. (USW20, $18.00)

Cadillac Desert, The American West and Its Disappearing Water

Cadillac Desert, The American West and Its Disappearing Water


by Marc Reisner

  • NATURAL HISTORY
  • 1993
  • PAPER
  • 582 PAGES

A definitive history of water development in the American desert -- and a now-classic chronicle of wrong-headed policies and misadventures controlling the great rivers of the West. (USW246, $19.00)

Downcanyon, A Naturalist Explores the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon

Downcanyon, A Naturalist Explores the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon


by Ann Zwinger

  • NATURAL HISTORY
  • 1995
  • PAPER
  • 320 PAGES

A vivid overview of the Grand Canyon and Colorado River, from Mile 0 at Lees Ferry to Mile 278 at Grand Wash Fault. Zwinger interweaves geology, plants, animals and human history in her account. (USW11, $19.95)

Glacier On My Mind


by Michael Sample

  • NATURAL HISTORY
  • 1997
  • HARD COVER
  • 120 PAGES
  • OUT OF PRINT

Sample captures the unrivaled natural beauty of the unique "Crown of the Continent" region in 140 brilliant color images, from Glacier National Park in Montana to Waterton Lakes National Park in Alberta. (USW100, $32.95)

My First Summer in the Sierra

My First Summer in the Sierra


by John Muir

  • NATURAL HISTORY
  • 2003
  • PAPER
  • 353 PAGES

Muir's original account of a summer in Yosemite and surrounding High Sierras, based on his youthful notebooks of the summer of 1869. (CAL47, $13.00)

Our National Parks

Our National Parks


by John Muir | Richard F. Fleck

  • NATURAL HISTORY
  • 1994
  • PAPER
  • 370 PAGES

A collection of ten essays on the national parks of the west, including Yosemite, Yellowstone, Sequoia and General Grant. Six of the ten chapters are devoted to Yosemite National Park. (USW272, $28.00)

Sierra Nevada, The Naturalist's Companion

Sierra Nevada, The Naturalist's Companion


by Verna Johnston

  • NATURAL HISTORY
  • 2004
  • PAPER
  • 241 PAGES

This portrait of the Sierra Nevada has been a favorite among naturalists since first being published in 1970. Recently updated to reflect ecological research, it's a lyrical tour of the wildlife, plants and landscapes. (CAL46, $29.95)

The Grizzly Bear

The Grizzly Bear


by Thomas McNamee

  • NATURAL HISTORY
  • 1997
  • PAPER
  • 314 PAGES
  • OUT OF PRINT

A natural history of "ursus arctos horribilis" -- lyrical, well written and provocative. An appropriate introduction to the beast for anyone traveling to grizzly country. McNamee also wrote "The Return of the Wolf to Yellowstone." (BST39, $16.95)

A Naturalist's Guide to Canyon Country

A Naturalist's Guide to Canyon Country


by David Williams | Gloria Brown

  • FIELD GUIDE
  • 2001
  • PAPER
  • 188 PAGES

A compact field guide to the wildlife of the high desert of the Colorado Plateau and the nine national parks of the region. Williams includes an overview of the history, geology and ecology of the high desert along with basic information on identifying common plants and animals. (USW289, $24.95)

National Audubon Society Field Guide to the Rocky Mountain States

National Audubon Society Field Guide to the Rocky Mountain States


by Peter Alden

  • FIELD GUIDE
  • 1999
  • PAPER
  • 447 PAGES

A compact field guide to 1,000 commonly encountered plants and animals of Colorado, Montana, Wyoming and Idaho. With 1,500 color photographs, 11 maps, and 16 night-sky charts. (USW286, $19.95)

National Audubon Society Field Guide to the Southwestern States: Arizona, New Mexico, Nevada, Utah

National Audubon Society Field Guide to the Southwestern States: Arizona, New Mexico, Nevada, Utah


by Peter Alden

  • FIELD GUIDE
  • 1999
  • PAPER
  • 448 PAGES

A compact photographic guide to the wildflowers, trees, mosses, butterflies, fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals of the American Southwest. (SWU14, $22.00)

National Geographic Field Guide to the Birds of North America

National Geographic Field Guide to the Birds of North America


by Jon Dunn

  • FIELD GUIDE
  • 2011
  • PAPER
  • 576 PAGES

This guide is the veteran's choice for birding anywhere in the United States. Practical to use in the field, it has maps, illustrations and descriptions of the birds on facing pages. (FG09, $27.95)

The Deserts of the Southwest, A Sierra Club Naturalist's Guide

The Deserts of the Southwest, A Sierra Club Naturalist's Guide


by Peggy Larson

  • FIELD GUIDE
  • 2000
  • PAPER
  • 282 PAGES

A favorite back in a new edition, Peggy Larson's indispensable guide to the ecology of the desert Southwest (Mojave, Chihuahua, Great Basin and Sonora) is also an excellent reference for travelers to Baja. Small enough to take along and with line drawings throughout. (DES01, $18.95)

More Recommendations

Here are some other groups of books that might be of interest

Longitude provides recommended reading for travelers in partnership with the leading tour operators and travel programs for hundreds of destinations worldwide. We've got the classic, new and hard-to-find books and maps to help you get the most out of your adventures.