It's time to start thinking about what to get
those special folks on your holiday list.
(And don't forget to get yourself a little
something, too.) What better gifts than books
-- the present you can open again and again?
(Well, maybe Sierra Club 1996 calendars also
qualify. See info elsewhere in these pages.)
In my opinion, one of this season's
"naturals" for gift-book giving is a brand-
new, revised edition of that old
indispensable guidebook, DEEPEST VALLEY:
Guide to Owens Valley, Its Roadsides &
Mountain Trails. DV was edited by Sierra Club
members Genny Smith and Jeff Putman, and
published by Genny Smith Books.
As noted in the Eastern Sierra
Times, "From the heights of Mount Whitney to
the depths of the Owens Valley floor and back
up to the windswept summits of the White
Mountains, DEEPEST VALLEY explores the
stories behind the scenery. . . . First
published 33 years ago, and popular ever
since, DEEPEST VALLEY has been out of print
for more than a decade. Fresh from the
printers, the new book is now for sale . . .
in local outlets." (And in many other
bookstores throughout southern and central
Many of Genny's readers (including me)
have been nagging her for years to get out a
new edition of DV. Now she's done it! My own
much-used copy "walked" several years ago --
so, on first hearing of the new edition, I
immediately rushed out to the nearest
bookstore and bought a new one (and a few
extra) -- along with a several copies of the
latest edition (1993) of her equally useful
MAMMOTH LAKES SIERRA: A Handbook for Roadside
& Trail. (The tape had begun to outweigh the
paper in my 1986 edition.)
Whew! -- my holiday shopping is almost
done. Let's see, now: one pile of DEEPEST
VALLEY, one pile of MAMMOTH LAKES SIERRA, one
pile of Sierra Club 1996 Calendars . . . .
Oops, wait! I'm not quite finished with the
first installment of my holiday gift
recommendations. Although I happen to be
well-supplied with the next two books (for
reasons that will shortly become obvious),
I'd like to call them to your attention.
They, too, I'm told, make dandy holiday
(birthday, etc.) gifts for outdoor types.
They, too, were written by a Sierra Club
member -- me.
ADVENTURING IN THE CALIFORNIA DESERT: The
Sierra Club Travel Guide to the Great Basin,
Mojave, & Colorado Desert Regions of
California, covers the California desert from
the White Mountains to the Mexican Border,
and from the Colorado River to Red Rock
There is a major section covering "Inyo-
Mono Country" which includes car touring,
birdwatching, exploring Indian and pioneer
historical sites and desert museums, day
hikes, backpacking trips, and peak climbs
(classified by degree of difficulty). The
trips take place throughout the Inyo-Mono
area: Saline Valley, Owens Lake-Panamint
Dunes, Lone Pine-Big Pine-
Independence-Bishop, and the White Mountains-
Last Chance Mountains.
For the kids on your list, there's TAKE A
HIKE! The Sierra Club Kids' Guide to Hiking &
Backpacking. This guide to the fundamentals -
- and fun -- of walking on the wild side
covers many facts a kid may want or need to
know: how to get in shape for the trail, how
to decide on gear, how to read the weather,
how to find the right hiking rhythm, and how
NOT to get lost. There's also info on how to
deal with heat, cold, pesky bugs, and
blisters, as well as on finding a campsite
and preparing easy trailside meals. There's
even a chapter to help hikers notice and
enjoy the flowers, trees, rocks, and animals
they may see along the trails.
These two books are also available in
local bookstores. In addition, they can be
purchased from the Sierra Club. (Call Molly
Thomas, 415-977-5682, and ask for a copy of
the Mail Order Service Guide.)
Happy holiday shopping!
Lynne Foster is a editor for Toiyabe
Chapter's Range of Light Group.
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