Magazine article Sunset

Guidebooks to Go

Magazine article Sunset

Guidebooks to Go

Article excerpt

A new crop of highly readable guidebooks makes hitting the trail in the Rockies easier

After putting in a lot of fireside time with the current crop of guidebooks geared toward people-powered pleasures, we've come up with this collection. Most were published within the last year, though a few are extensive revisions that shouldn't be overlooked. We focused on books that offer a regional overview so that you can either explore close to home or expand your adventuring horizons.

These books do more than get you from point A to point B. They offer a good read, with charming anecdotes and interesting tidbits on natural and human histories. They take you somewhere, whether you are tramping along a narrow footpath or curled up in an armchair.

* Snowshoeing Colorado, by Claire Walter. Clomp through Colorado's snowdrifts with the help of this Sunset contributor, who details more than 160 snowshoe trails throughout the state. This edition features a new section on snowshoeing the Pikes Peak region, plus tells you the trails on which you can (and can't) take Rover and Spot. You will also get help finding country cafes, cozy lodgings, and other noteworthy stops along the way. Fulcrum Publishing, Golden, CO, 2000 (second edition); $18.95; www.fulcrum-books.com.

* Montana and Idaho's Continental Divide Trail: The Official Guide, by Lynna Howard, and Wyoming's Continental Divide Trail: The Official Guide, by Lora Davis. These photo- and map-studded volumes follow two lengths of this 3,100-mile-long National Scenic Trail. The Montana and Idaho guide pays special attention to the states' abundant wildlife, telling you, for instance, how to react if a grizzly or moose pays you an unexpected visit. The Wyoming volume navigates the tricky, unfinished trail sections, offering alternate trails and other options. Together, the books give easy-to-follow directions for through-hikers, as well as shorter jaunts along the Continental Divide Trail. A Colorado guide to the trail, published by Westcliffe Publishers in 1997, is also available. (A New Mexico guide should be available at the beginning of this month.) Westcliffe Publishers, Englewood, CO, 2000; Montana and Idaho, $27. …

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