The days have drawn short in Whitehorse and the weather of late has us making a real dent in the wood pile. While we dream of the adventures that summer 2023 will hold we are feeding the fire of our souls with some great reads! Dive in for our annual Dreaming of the North book list!
Arctic Dreams by Barry Lopez
This past July I was sitting at the edge of the Arctic ocean with the midnight sun high above the horizon. I inched a little closer to a driftwood fire and pulled out this classic Barry Lopez text. His stories of Arctic cultures, technologies and animals blended with his philosophy have kept me up late for years and this night was no different as I read the following passage and knew that I was exactly where I needed to be.
“Once in his life a man ought to concentrate his mind upon the remembered earth. He ought to give himself up to a particular landscape in his experience; to look at it from as many angles as he can, to wonder upon it, to dwell upon it. He ought to imagine that he touches it with his hands at every season and listens to the sounds that are made upon it. He ought to imagine the creatures there and all the faintest motions of the wind. He ought to recollect the glare of the moon and the colors of the dawn and dusk.”
The Longest Journey by Amy Hevron
2022 saw the arrival of my first child (a daughter we named Aven). Of the many changes this has wrought on my life perhaps none are so visible as the impact on my reading. Suddenly I have a real appreciation for quality and interesting children’s books!
Amy Hevron’s tale about a young arctic tern’s first year of life, is grounded in science. Combine this with gorgeous art and writing that is as fun to read as it seems it is for my daughter to listen to, I can’t recommend this book enough for anyone with children in their lives!
An Immense World by Ed Yong
“The only true voyage is not to visit strange lands, but to possess other eyes.”
This fascinating book opened our eyes to the incredible world of animal senses. If you have ever wondered what a songbird hears in the tune of a potential mate, or what animal is capable of communicating over the longest distance (the fin whale!). It is an absolute joy to read!
The Company: The Rise and Fall of the Hudson’s Bay Empire
As we paddle the Seven Sacred Rivers of the Peel, the Nahanni or Coppermine, the time of the fur trade can seem close at hand. This compelling history book will pull you deep into the characters (both good and evil) who built the Hudson’s Bay company into a nation spanning empire and show how this business’ legacy still impacts us today.
A Wild Idea by Jonathan Franklin
The 1960’s birthed many of the icons of the outdoor industry, companies whose storied origins inspired countless people to engage with business in a way that would prioritize more than profits.
A Wild Idea is the story of how Doug Tomkins founded the brands The North Face and Esprit before going on to create a massive protected area in South America. Growing from a patchwork of rewilded ranches it now stands as one of the most impressive contributions to conservation on the planet.
A compelling and inspiring read; I can’t recommend this book enough to anyone who is considering a career in business or wondering how they too can have a positive impact on the world!