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Columbia & Snake Rivers Reading List

These resources are suggested to enhance your understanding and enjoyment of the history, unique culture, wilderness, and wildlife of the Columbia & Snake Rivers.

Culture / History

Bound for Glory - Woody Guthrie, 1983
The autobiography of beloved American folk singer, Guthrie shares tales from the road, before the great American road trip was a concept. During the Depression era, Guthrie set out to see the country, including the iconic Columbia River, by walking, hitchhiking, and hopping trains.

Astoria - Peter Stark, 2015
Six years after the Corps of Discovery expedition, Thomas Jefferson and John Jacob Astor sent an party of hearty souls west. The mission took three years and established the first colony on the Pacific Ocean, opening the way for the Oregon Trail.

Great River of the West: Essays on the Columbia River - William L. Lang and Robert C. Carriker, 2000

This collection of essays gives the mighty Columbia a rich character through stories of people who have lived along its banks, defining events throughout the times, and geologic forces that have exerted their influence on the river.

People of the River: Native Arts of the Oregon Territory - Bill Mercer, 2005
Through illustrations and photos, Mercer shares insight into the phenomenal and important artworks of Native cultures from the mouth of the Columbia to the Snake River.

Voyage of a Summer Sun: Canoeing the Columbia River - Robin Cody, 2002

Beginning at the source of the river in the Canadian Rockies and ending at the Pacific Ocean, Cody journeyed 1,200 miles over 82-days by canoe down the Columbia River. Humorous, thoughtful, and intriguing this voyage shares an intimate side of the river few see.

Geology / Nature

Fire, Faults, and Floods: A Road & Trail Guide Exploring the Origins of the Columbia River Basin - Marge and Ted Mueller, 2003
The striking landscape of the Columbia River Basin comes vividly to life through this detailed geological history of the region.

National Geographic Field Guide to the Birds of North America, Sixth Edition - Jon L. Dunn and Jonathan Alderfer, 2011
Including hundreds of images, this guide is packed with valuable information; maps of migration patterns, breakdowns of species and subspecies, habitat details, identification tips, and more.

Northwest Passage: The Great Columbia River - William Dietrich, 1996
This Pulitzer prize-winning journalist and author dives deep into the Columbia’s transformation over time interweaving geology, hydrology, native flora and fauna, use by Native cultures, and effects of explorers and engineers.

Lewis & Clark

From Sea to Shining Sea - James Alexander Thom, 1986
From the Revolutionary War to the Corps of Discovery’s expedition, this sweeping epic tells the remarkable story of the Clark family beginning in Virginia during the war and culminating in the most famous westward journey of William Clark and his partner, Meriwether Lewis.

Undaunted Courage: Meriwether Lewis, Thomas Jefferson, and the Opening of the American West - Stephen Ambrose, 1997
The detailed and fascinating biography of Meriwether Lewis comes vibrantly to life from his early relationship with Thomas Jefferson working in the White House, to undertaking one of the most epic adventures in North America.


Wine Trails of Washington - Steve Roberts, Sunny Parsons, Lisa Pettit, 2007
The perfect companion to regional winemaking, this comprehensive book includes details on over 220 wineries including vintners’ philosophies, descriptions of the wineries, and suggested tour routes.