Take to the trails for a celebration of nature — and a day spent with dad.
In the cool and quiet early light of morning, a father and child wake up. Today they’re going on a hike.
Follow the duo into the mountains as they witness the magic of the wilderness, overcome challenges, and play a small role in the survival of the forest. By the time they return home, they feel alive — and closer than ever — as they document their hike and take their place in family history.
In detail-rich panels and textured panoramas, Pete Oswald perfectly paces this nearly wordless adventure, allowing readers to pause for subtle wonders and marvel at the views.
A touching tribute to the bond between father and child, with resonant themes for Earth Day, Hike is a breath of fresh air.---from the publisher
40 pages 978-1536201574 Ages 4-8
Keywords: adventure, nature, diversity, diverse books, hiking, outdoors, father/son, family, 4 year old, 5 year old, 6 year old, 7 year old, 8 year old, wilderness
“We must begin thinking like a river if we are to leave a legacy of beauty and life for future generations.”
-- David Brower, founder of Friends of the Earth
“I love to go a-wandering
Along the mountain track
And as I go, I love to sing
My knapsack on my back
My knapsack on my back”
-- English lyrics by Antonia Ridge (1955)
I love to don my hiking boots and wander down a road or up a trail. I owe my lifelong love of walking and hiking to the Boy Scouts of America.
Sometimes it was a challenging hike with full packs, heading to a weekend camporee with multiple troops. A favorite destination was Macedonia Brook State Park in Connecticut. Sometimes it was just our patrol on an icy five miler, hiking from our neighborhood over to Blydenburgh County Park in Smithtown. (That route always included a detour on Veterans Highway for hot chocolate and doughnuts.)
Here in San Francisco, we are currently in a coronavirus lockdown. To avoid going stir-crazy, I’ve been sneaking out, weather permitting, to do a few social-distanced miles on the hilly streets each afternoon.
Pete Oswald’s HIKE is a stunning, nearly-wordless, picture book hiking adventure. Told through captivating digital illustrations, it features an untraditional family--a father and his gender-neutral child. They have planned carefully, so they are able to jump up at the crack of dawn, load the car, and head out of town and into the mountains.
Once there, the child engages in many of the skills I learned back in the day: reading maps; climbing mountains; observing wildlife; journaling animal tracks; photographing beautiful vistas; throwing snowballs; and skimming rocks on the lake.
As a pileated woodpecker bores for insects nearby, the father and child successfully traverse a tricky log crossing just downstream of a glorious, thundering waterfall. They take a snack break.
Finally, they reach their ultimate destination: a mountaintop of evergreens. They remove a small shovel and a baby evergreen from the child’s backpack; carefully plant it; and then manage an old-fashioned selfie, using a camera with a timer.
The pair exudes joy and satisfaction as they hike back to the car; drive home; and recall their exploits over milk and cookies.
Pete Oswald has me thinking about some of the places I might get to go hiking, once the world is back to normal.
For the sake of the planet, and its ever present need for a new generation of stewardship; I hope that this beautiful HIKE finds a wide and enthusiastic audience.
Recommended by: Richie Partington, MLIS, California USA
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