Conrad Anker, mountaineer
Three Cups of Tea: One Man's Mission to Fight Terrorism and Build Nations... One School at a Time, by Greg Mortenson and David Oliver Relin (2006)
A climber befriends the people of the Karakoram and turns the friendship into something positive—a great humanitarian story.
Steph Davis, climber
Thirteen Senses: A Memoir, by Victor Villaseñor (2001)
Intense, funny, magical, wild, spiritual, and passionate. Villaseñor says that members of Western societies who believe that we have five senses, period, have blinders on. I am always exploring my senses and my mind—it's why I'm a climber.
Jimmy Chin, mountaineer & photographer
Into the Wild, by Jon Krakauer (1996)
A beautiful and tragic story. Christopher McCandless's aimlessness, fierce in-dependence, and search for solace and peace in wild places are things that I relate to. McCandless gave himself entirely to the wild, and it devoured him. Though it hasn't yet devoured me, I relate to that part, too.
Kit DesLauriers, ski mountaineer
Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life, by Barbara Kingsolver, with Steven L. Hopp and Camille Kingsolver (2007)
The true story of the authors' one-year commitment to eating only locally grown foods. It's an amazingly timely statement on the way we've been feeding ourselves over the past 30-plus years, which, in a nutshell, has been in a nonsustainable and less than optimally healthy way.