Ira Spring — a legacy author of more than sixty outdoor and hiking books and a frequent collaborator of Harvey Manning — often wrote about “green bonding,” the idea that time spent in the wild creates deep emotional ties and a natural desire to advocate for and protect those places.

Mountaineers Books promotes strong green bonds with every title we publish, from guidebooks that provide the confidence and skills to explore the outdoors to immersive wilderness adventures—stories that transport readers to remote places and visceral experiences. Our photography-rich Braided River books go one better, revealing the natural world through wondrous and startling imagery. It is simply our core belief that first-hand experience can create a personal relationship with nature, and that such experiences then plant the seeds of a deep-rooted and self-directed advocacy.

Mason BeeBuilding from that foundation, our books provide tools for responsible recreation, backyard activism, and engagement with issues of global concern. Our guides incorporate best practices, such as Leave No Trace, to minimize the impact of recreation on shared lands, as well as support land managers and trails associations through our 1% for Trails program. For readers looking to do more, our Skipstone imprint covers advocacy and conservation on a local scale — books about gardening with native species, creating healthy habitat for pollinators, or reducing food waste. Small actions that can add up to big changes and reflect our on-trail ethics back at home.

Cover of OrcaAt a much larger scale, our books use the power of images and stories to inspire readers to protect threatened wild places. Perhaps most famously, Washington State Governor Dan Evans delivered a copy of The Alpine Lakes to President Ford in 1976, leading to the creation of the Alpine Lakes Wilderness here in Washington. Today, our Braided River imprint carries on that legacy, calling attention to regions from the Colorado River Watershed to the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. In recent years, Braided River titles have won numerous honors, including The Big Thaw (published with the Woodwell Climate Research Center) which was recognized in 2020 by the Independent Publisher Book Awards with a Gold in Environment and Ecology, and Orca (published with the Seattle Times) which followed in 2021 as the National Outdoor Book Award Winner in Nature and Environment. More than an imprint, Braided River is also an independent conservation nonprofit that raises the profile and reach of our publications with ongoing impact campaigns, events, and exhibits.


SkipstoneSkipstone titles promote a deeper connection to our natural world through sustainable practices and backyard activism. Skipstone books inspire us to effect change without losing our sense of humor, celebrate the freedom and generosity of a life outdoors, and pitch in where we can on the maintenance of our planet and our own neighborhoods.

Looking to have more unstructured fun outdoors, start an organic garden, or make your own kitchen more sustainable? You’ll find realistic and doable advice for building community and conserving resources in our Skipstone titles. Skipstone readers live smart, play well, and engage in the communities around them.


Braided RiverBraided River uses photography and stories to show and explain the value of specific wildplaces in North America as a sort of "revelation" advocacy. The goal of each Braided River title is to show readers what's at stake when wilderness is lost, and to provide the scientific, ecological, economic, and cultural arguments for preserving especially fragile environments.

Braided River’s first book, Seasons of Life and Land in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge was critical in efforts to protect the Arctic’s most fragile places from oil and gas development. Since then, we have featured sensitive places from the Arctic down to Baja California and east to the Rocky Mountains. Conservation organizations across the country have used Braided River’s communication tools to help influence policies that will protect these precious wild places for many years to come.

Braided River also goes “beyond the book” with media campaigns, multimedia presentations, and museum exhibits, all designed to engage audiences outside the traditional environmental core.