You’ve already heard about Wild. It’s Cheryl Strayed’s bestselling memoir about hiking the Pacific Crest Trail in search of the healthy, happy woman she used to be, before her mother’s sudden death and the disintegration of her family. It’s about her search for a way out of what she’d become: a 26 year-old orphaned divorcee with an occasional heroin habit. And it’s the book that Oprah loved so much, she had to resurrect her book club, in hibernation for the past two years, just to honor it.
Strayed is poised to become an author with the profile and sales of an Elizabeth Gilbert, and Wild an Eat, Pray, Love for the backcountry crowd. But while she may well have the top-selling, female-authored hiking memoir of all time on her hands, she’s not the first woman writer to lace up a pair of hiking boots. Here are five other epic memoirs of outdoor adventure, all written by women.