Our Top 5 Outdoor Books - Walks Around Britain

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Our Top 5 Outdoor Books

Here's our selection of the Top 5 Outdoor Books available now.
Unlike possibly all of our other Top 5 lists, this one changes not only when new books come out, but also as we discover - or sometimes re-discover - books which might have been around for a while, but which we think deserve your attention.
So, it's kind of like a Man Booker Prize... but for outdoor writing.  And we'll be updating this page, so keep popping back to stay up-to-date with our selection.

Hidden Histories - Mary-Ann Ochota

The sub-heading of this book is "A Spotter's Guide to the British Landscape" - and it certainly is that.  Although at 288 pages and with it's size, perhaps not so much of an "on location" spotters' book, as a reference guide to make sense of what you've seen.  

So no matter what you've seen around the countryside of Britain - lumps & bumps, standing stones, highways & byways - Mary-Ann Ochota explains them all, with a lovely light writing style which is perfectly suited to the topic.  Explaining everything from stalled tombs to wayside crosses, the text is littered with where you can find many examples, together with OS grid references.

As a reference guide, this is top notch; it's a sheer feast for the eyes - both literary and in imagery - and very much in the Tristan Gooley mould of explaining the landscape around us - and that is meant as a complement.  Read this book and then when you are out on your walks around Britain you'll have all the information you need to make sense of what the British landscape is telling you.

Paperback - £14.95 - Buy Now

The Walks Around Britain Puzzle Book - Andrew White

Can you guess the most westerly of the Wainwrights?
Do you know how long is the Wales Coast Path?
Or how many maps are in a complete set of OS Explorer maps?

Well, the chances are if you are visiting this website that you'll enjoy the new book from our lead presenter Andrew White.  It's packed with 50 puzzles and quizzes all themed around items, places and landscapes you'll likely see, pass through or encounter on your walking adventures.

And it makes the perfect gift for any outdoor friend...

Paperback - £4.99 - Buy Now

Geocaching in the UK - Terry Marsh

Geocaching is a hi-tech version of treasure hunting, using GPS units or similar apps on smartphones.  It's been around for a while, but has enjoyed increased popularity with the advent of smartphone GPS apps - meaning that anyone can now play, not just those with an expensive GPS device.

But it is very handy to have a hand holding you through the beginnings; to give you an introduction into what to do and how to do it - and this clearly written and concise book is perfect for this.  It's writer, Terry Marsh, is familiar name in the outdoor world, with over a 100 books to his name, and he's a devoted geocacher - so there's no-one more suited to explain this activity.

So, if you are looking to get into geocaching, this is the book to explain it all.

Paperback - £9.95 - Buy Now
Kindle version - £9.45 - Buy Now

Top 10 Walks - Lake District Woodland Walks - Viv Crow

The ever-expanding range of Top 10 Walks books have some fantastic titles in their midst, covering a wide area of the north of England and the Welsh coast.   But this, in our opinion, is the best.

Not only does it challenge the established order and thinking that the Lake District is all about Mr Wainwright (something we're always very happy to challenge ourselves!), but it shows a different side to the Lakes - one woodland and forest side.  It's full of stunning photos, many of which were taken in the best time for woodland walks - the Autumn - and the 10 routes are a great insight in to the world of the Lake District's wooded areas.  In fact, the very first one at Claife Heights is a longer version of our one in season one!

The highlight, though, is that the book is written by Vivienne Crow, an extremely knowledgeable writer about the Cumbrian area, who writes with a lot of passion, charm and vigor.  Certainly one for all fans of the Lake District... especially ones who don't want to go up yet another mountain...

£5.99 - Buy Now

Walking Hadrian's Wall Path - Mark Richards

The Hadrian's Wall Path is one of England and Wales' National Trails, with 84 miles of trail walking... but in this guide book written by expert Mark Richards, it is broken down into 10 stages which makies it perfect as a first long-distance walking route.

In fact, it really is two books in one, as the Path is described in either direction - so Mark's preferred west-east, and then the alternative east-west.  This is achieved in a very clever way, by including in the west-east section all the full description along with detailed background information, and put just the route instructions for the east-west in a separate colour-coded section at the end of each stage.

The descriptions paint as vivid a picture as any of the photographs do, and so fans of Mark's work won't be disappointed with this.  It was also one of the first of a new-style of Cicerone books, with an updated layout and a route map booklet with 1:25,000 Explorer-sized OS mapping.

£11.05 - Buy Now

About our reviews
Walks Around Britain's product reviews are unbiased, independent advice you can trust.  
If you click on the links to buy any product, we do sometimes earn revenue on the transaction, but we never let this effect and bias our choices.
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All our reviews are done with the actual product in front of us and every item is tested in real-world situations.

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