Ski books are a pretty niche genre. It’s almost like skiers would rather be skiing than writing. Weird. Anyway, there still are a number of fascinating tomes out there for the avid skier, each with its own unique tale of adventure and self-discovery on the mountain.
Ski books aren’t limited to dry technical manuals and annually updated travel guides. There are a wealth of titles out there spanning real-life adventure stories and (less real-life) romantic comedies. Regardless of the genre, one thing you can be certain of with a ski book is that it will transport you to another world. Pick up a ski title and you can easily escape the drudgery of the daily, train commute to work!
Whether you’re looking for something to read on the train, or you just want to stick your nose in a book while you rest in a cosy chalet, these books are required reading for anyone who enjoys sliding down a mountain on two planks of wood. And you never know, the ski book might inspire your next ski holiday!
Higher Love: Skiing the Seven Summits
By Kit Deslauriers
Kit Deslauriers has led a thrilling and enviable life of adventure. She made history by becoming the first ever person to climb and then ski down the highest mountain on every continent. On her thrilling journey she encounters African rainforests, Antarctic temperatures, and edge-of-your-seat challenges on Mount Everest.
Higher Love recounts her dramatic quest with great insight and honesty. As befits a massive challenge that took the author just two years to complete, Higher Love is a fast-paced, real-life adventure and an exciting read.
Unbound: A Story of Snow and Self-Discovery
By Steph Jagger
If you ever contemplated quitting your job, selling everything you own, and chasing winter around the world, then Unbound might just be the book for you. In this witty memoir, Steph Jagger does what we’ve all dreamed of – escaping her day job for a life of skiing and exploring.
In this travel journal, the author journeys across America, Asia, Europe and New Zealand on a mission to ski four million feet in one year. Along the way she discovers that this is not just a physical adventure, but an emotional and spiritual adventure too.
Deep: The Story Of Skiing And The Future Of Snow
By Porter Fox
Deep asks some challenging questions for skiers and snowboarders. At once a fascinating insight into the history of skiing and an intriguing look at the implications of climate change on our favourite sport.
The book follows Porter Fox as he journeys from the mountains of Western America to Mont Blanc and the Matterhorn. In conversation with expert scientists and in examining ground-breaking studies, Fox reveals the threat of climate change on our favourite sport. It is a thought-provoking and scary read.
War and Piste
By Alex Thomas
Alex Thomas is the pen name of an ex-seasonaire – so we couldn’t really say if she worked for Inghams or not! War and Piste tells the story of Poppy Connors who gave up her life of suits and cappuccinos to spend the winter in the Austrian Alps, drinking Jagermeister, falling in love, and developing a passion for backcountry skiing.
War and Piste is an incredibly funny novel, best described as cross between Bridget Jones’ Diary and the movie Chalet Girl. If anyone was looking for a witty adventure and an introduction of the life of a seasonaire, then this novel is a great place to start.
The Edge of Never: A Skier’s Story of Life, Death, and Dreams in the World’s Most Dangerous Mountains
By Kye Petersen
Kye Petersen tragically lost his father in an avalanche related skiing accident, but that didn’t deter him from going on to become a successful extreme skier. The Edge of Never details Kye Petersen’s journey to Chamonix, where his father died.
Kye encounters three experienced, extreme skiers that help him to explore the ski region that has had such a seminal impact on his life. As harrowing as the story sounds, the book is a genuine coming-of-age tale and a thrilling adventure which gets to the heart of why we fall in love with the mountains.
A documentary film of the same name accompanies the book. Directed by filmmaker William A. Kerig, the film was released in 2009.
Instant Karma: The Heart And Soul Of A Ski Bum
By Wayne K. Sheldrake
In Instant Karma, Wayne K. Sheldrake explores the philosophy of being a ski bum. Part anecdotal autobiography, part treatise on the passion for skiing and the spiritual connection with the great outdoors.
Instant Karma was first published in 2007 and has gone on to become a cult classic. Much of that fame is likely down to the author’s great wit and charm. The rich language perfectly evokes the spirit of being amongst Mother Nature, and Sheldrake’s adventures are as exciting as they are reckless.
Do you have a favourite ski book that doesn’t appear on our list? Let us know what you enjoy reading on your ski holiday, and what books inspire you to ski.