Scraping Heaven

A Family's Journey Along the Continental Divide Trail

  • 352 pages
  • Mountaineers Books
  • 978-1-68051-034-8
  • Feb 11, 2016

Paperback / softback
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“Not only are readers given the opportunity to experience the sheer beauty and at times frightening dangers of the trail, but they also watch two children grow and learn to call the trail their home. Well written, captivating, and incredibly educational, this adventure is a lesson in the simplicity of life and the beauty of accomplishment.” —Publishers Weekly

"This is both an epic adventure of the first order and the heartwarming story of the family who accomplished it." —San Francisco Chronicle

Now available for the first time in paperback and ebook, Scraping Heaven is the story of a family’s adventurous trek over the rooftop of North America—a warm and heartfelt account with a powerful message for parents, long-distance hikers, and outdoor adventurers alike.

The Continental Divide Trail, a rugged 3100-mile footpath running along the crest of the Rocky Mountains from Canada to Mexico, is infamous for its tricky mountain passes and snowy traverses. In 1993, Cindy Ross, her husband, and their two toddlers set out together on the Trail. Using llamas as kid-carriers and packers, they successfully hiked the entire route over the next five summers, covering the last 700 miles on tandem mountain bikes in 1998.

A keenly observant storyteller, Ross deftly interweaves evocative descriptions of the landscape with dramatic accounts of sudden snowstorms, gale-force winds strong enough to lift a child, and heart-pounding wildlife encounters. Through it all, her intimate reflections on marriage, family, and children provide depth and interest far beyond the high Rocky Mountain peaks. Scraping Heaven features a new afterword by the author.


  • 352 pages
  • Mountaineers Books
  • 978-1-68051-034-8
  • Feb 11, 2016

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