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William L. Sullivan, well-known for his numerous hiking books centered around Oregon, presents several hikes and the history surrounding them.
I know this book won’t have much appeal to a broad audience but it was so engaging, I wanted to review it.
When my husband and I first arrived in Oregon in April of 2020 for his work assignment at a hospital outside Portland, my aunt put me in touch with one of her friends who owns a summer home on the Oregon coast. That friend provided invaluable recommendations for things to do and see but she also mentioned that I should try to find hiking books written by William L. Sullivan. I didn’t want to pay for a physical copy since we were only going to be in the area for three months (three turned into six because the state is beautiful), so I looked at the digital library. This was the only one of his books available for digital download.
I expected to simply use this as a guidebook for hikes we might not have discovered otherwise but it was so interesting that I read it straight through, cover to cover. I don’t know that I actively planned any hikes using this book but I would constantly spout the history of the surrounding areas to my husband while we were out hiking on whatever trail we found. I don’t think I’ve ever come across another book quite like this before but it added a depth to our hikes that I enjoyed. I wish there were books like it for every state.
The author organizes the book by topic, not by area, which works best if you’re reading it as I did. If you’re using it more as a guidebook, you’ll have to rely heavily on the index. My favorite section was about Native American legends but there were a lot of amazing stories included throughout. Other topics included early European explorers, the settlers, World War II, current conservation efforts, and a lot of history in between.
I’m trying hard not to buy books while we’re traveling (we live in our RV while we’re on location, so space is at a premium), but I wish I’d had a physical copy to flip through and keep in the car on our journeys. The pictures from the e-book on my Kindle Paperwhite were hard to see. I also find it easier to flip through a reference book like this than to search through a digital file.
If you live in or plan to visit Oregon (one day when COVID restrictions are behind us), I highly recommend picking up a physical copy of this book. It will enhance your appreciation of that beautiful, geographically-diverse state.
Buy Hiking Oregon’s History from Malaprop’s Bookstore in Asheville, NC.
I have an affiliate relationship with Malaprop’s Bookstore/Cafe in beautiful Asheville, NC. I will earn a small commission at no additional cost to you if you purchase merchandise through links on my site.