Posted March 31, 2014 by in Book Lists

The Best Outdoors Books for Spring

As Old Man Winter heads to the hills for some much needed rest, good ol’ Spring comes out to play. As winter winds down, all of our thoughts go out to the great outdoors. The smell of freshly cut grass, the beauty of blossoms, and the feeling of sunshine overwhelm the senses and leave us with a hankering to drop our boots and welcome flip-flops and bare toes.

Once this much-anticipated warm weather does decide it’s time to show, we’d better be ready with our list of outdoor activities. What better time to read up on some of the greatest activities you and your family can do outdoors? Here’s a list of some of the best outdoors books to get you prepared for rolling in the dirt:

For the Kids

  • The Amazing Outdoor Activity Book by Angela Wilkes. I love everything DK Children puts out, and this book is no exception. It’s filled with great instructions and pictures, so you and your kids can learn about the nature around you and how to build exciting projects together.
  • Fifteen Minutes Outside: 365 Ways to Get Out of the House and Connect with Your Kids by Rebecca P. Cohen. This one isn’t just for spring, but it’s included in this list because of the principle it teaches: take the time every day, even just 15 minutes, and show your kids the importance of living an active lifestyle. This book has 365 active ways to embrace nature. You can choose to do one or a few activities a day. Full of great ideas, this book will surely keep you and the kiddos busy and connected.

For the Trailblazer

photo credit: CarbonNYC via photopin cc

Photo credit: CarbonNYC via photopin cc

  • Bushcraft: Outdoor Skills and Wilderness Survival by Mors Kochanski. If you plan on spending extended periods of time in the great wilderness, you should definitely pick up this book. It’ll teach you how to build fires, make meals and create a shelter. Full of insight into surviving in whatever condition, this is the must-have guide for camping and backpacking your way across any length of the outdoors.
  • Finding Your Way Without Map or Compass by Harold Gatty. Here is another must for the hiker, camper, or nature-lover. This book sheds light on natural techniques of discovering just where you are and the time of day. Through bird migration patterns and the position of the sun, Gatty shows the best navigation techniques for the wilderness.

For the Gardener…or the Wanna-Be Gardener

Photo credit: V. H. Hammer via photopin cc

Photo credit: V. H. Hammer via photopin cc

  • Gardening All-In-One For Dummies by Bob Beckstram et al. I’ll admit gardening isn’t my forte, but this book will help turn even the blackest thumb into a producer of green plants. Actually a compilation of seven books in one, you’ll definitely get your money’s worth as it explains the difference between a tulip and an evergreen.
  • Gardening 101: Learn How to Plan, Plant, and Maintain a Garden (The Best of Martha Stewart Living) by Martha Stewart. This book has been around for a while, but is still relevant and informative (and because it’s not brand new, you can’t beat the price!). This book gives insight into starting your garden and adding plants that will work in your soil. It also helps you figure out what sort of maintenance your plantings will require.
  • The New York Times 1000 Gardening Questions and Answers by Dora Galitzki. This book will answer any questions you have on gardening, regardless of how long you’ve been working in the dirt yourself. With this, find answers to anything, like soil acidity, pruning and mosquito control.

Regardless of how you intend to welcome spring to your neighborhood, whether it be through gardening, hiking, camping, or exploring with your kids, try grabbing a few of these titles to get your feet moving.

Photo credit: @ifatma. via photopin cc

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Courtney Gordner