News and Opinion from Sisters, Oregon

A hiker's bible

A few months ago the Sisters Library had a book signing with William "Bill" Sullivan. Since the library is undergoing a massive remodel, the signing was held at the Sisters Firehouse Community Hall on Elm Street. When I saw a few of the books that Bill has published, I decided I would get out of my comfy chair and go.

I'm glad I did go. Bill was very down to earth, knew his subjects and made the entire event interesting. One of the books I saw in his list was "100 Hikes / Travel Guide: Central Oregon Cascades." It's even better than it sounds and now has a new home with me. The book was originally written in 1998, but he gave it a huge makeover this year.

Sullivan updated the original 100 hikes to give details on fire damage, changes in the trails, and more. Each hike has full information on difficulty of the trail, length, months open and closed, plus how to get to the trail and what you'll see along the way.

He also added 104 additional hikes to the book. Each of these hikes is described basically the same as the original hikes, with information on how to get there, difficulty of the hike, etc., but the description is not as detailed and there are fewer pictures than the original 100 hikes. The shorter descriptions are still perfect for deciding if it's a hike for a beginner, family, or experienced hiker.

At the book signing the author had several more of his books available to purchase (we got a really good discount on extra books). I purchased "Oregon's History: The Stories Behind Historic Places You Can Walk To See," just because I love reading the history of Oregon from all different points of view.

This book covers the entire state and describes the history and trails in over 50 locations. It tells you how to get there, how long the trail is, the history associated with the area you'll be going through, and more. In the introduction, Sullivan says it well: "The story of Oregon is printed on the land for hikers to read. Oregon's grandest museum is the great outdoors."

Both of these books are perfect to take with you on a hike or keep by your chair in the living room. You can read as much or as little as you feel like and you'll enjoy the trip. If you get the chance to go to one of Sullivan's signings, do it. He will answer any questions you have plus provide a great presentation on his books, writings, and travels.

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