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Eight books to inspire your New Year's Resolutions

Tuesday, 8 January 2019

Made a promise to have more adventures in the outdoor this year? Whether you plan to do more day trips with the family, go wildlife spotting in your local countryside or achieve a new personal best, these are our top picks to help inspire resolutions you’ll stick to. 

The Year

Painstakingly researched, The Year brings together the human stories behind cycling’s endurance record, in which cyclists ride as many miles as they can in a single year. Legends such as Billie Dovey, the Cadbury’s sponsored ‘keep-fit girl’; the one-armed vegetarian communist Walter Greaves; and Tommy Godwin who cycled 75,065 miles in a single year and held the record for almost eighty years until it was recently surpassed by American cyclist Kurt Searvogel in 2016. The Year is now available for just £9.99, that’s 50% off!

Winter Walks in the Lake District 

Make the most of the cold weather with these easy winter climbs selected by local expert Stephen Goodwin. His favourite cold-weather outings include accessible jaunts up Gowbarrow, High Rigg and Latrigg, graded climbs on Browncove Crags and Nethermost Pike and ascents of the classics Scafell Pike, Blencathra and Great End – though not necessarily via the most travelled routes. Each route contains detailed instructions and directions and Ordnance Survey 1:25,000-scale maps, and important stuff like advice on the best local pubs and cafes. 

No Easy Way

Proof that a full-time job, family commitments or even a cancer diagnosis need be no deterrent to pursuing your passion for adventure, No Easy Way is Mick Fowler's third volume of memoirs and a series of expeditions to the greater ranges in order to attempt remote Himalayan mountains most Westerners will have never seen. Alongside partners including Paul Ramsden, Dave Turnbull, Andy Cave and Victor Saunders, he attempts striking, technically challenging unclimbed lines on Shiva, Gave Ding and Mugu Chuli – with a number of ascents winning prestigious Piolets d’Or.

Great Britain Mountain Biking 

Covering the best trail riding in England, Scotland and Wales, this is the ideal companion for planning weekends away. Each area contains detailed advice on what kind of riding to expect and when to go. Illustrated with beautiful photography throughout, there are also accommodation details, bike shops, trail centres and more.

Brown Hares in the Derbyshire Dales

Finding the best places to spot local wildlife is a great excuse to get out there and a good way of encouraging the kids to come along too. Meticulously researched, Brown Hares in the Derbyshire Dales is split into two halves; the first helps you identify the brown hare and differentiate them from rabbits and covers their behaviour with tips on where to find them in the wild. The second, biodiversity, reveals how insensitive farming in some areas has eradicated the hares natural habitat.  

There is no Map in Hell

If you're looking to be inspired by the human drive to achieve more than is thought possible, Steve Birkinshaw's There is No Map in Hell is all you need. In 2014, Steve made an attempt to surpass Joss Naylor's Wainwright record – a continuous circuit of all 214 Wainwright fells in the Lake District in under seven days. Recounting the preparation, the race itself and the psychological and physical demands he made of his mind and body, There is no Map in Hell is the story of the ultimate British ultramarathon. 


One of our most talked about books of last year, Waymaking is part of a legacy of women's outdoor writing – taking inspiration from Gwen Moffat's Space Below My Feet and Nan Shepherd's The Living Mountain – that aims to redress the gender balance in outdoor adventure. Featuring contributions by over fifty writers and artists including world-leading climber Hazel Findlay and renowned filmmaker Jen Randall, Waymaking focuses not on conquering mountains and achieving success but our personal connections to landscapes and wild and creative experiences. 

Wild Light

If Craig Aitchison's stunning photography doesn't make you want to get out and explore the Scottish Highlands and Islands, nothing will. Shot using a traditional Hasselblad film camera, this remarkable body of work features over eight panoramas that celebrate the rich natural heritage and incredible geodiversity for which Scotland is internationally renowned. 


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