THE ORDNANCE SURVEY PUZZLE BOOK: Pit Your Wits Against Britain’s Greatest Map Makers by Dr Gareth Moore and Ordnance Survey, pb Trapeze, ISBN 9781049184676, £14.99
Every walker worth his or her salt should have an awareness of how to read a map. So here are a couple of posers for you. Do you know your trig points from your national trails? Can you calculate using contours? Do not worry if you are scratching your head, because help is at hand with The Ordnance Survey Puzzle Book. Learn how to track down treasures, decipher geographical details and discover amazing facts as you work your way through this unique puzzle book, which is based on 40 of the OS’s best British maps. With hundreds of puzzles ranging from easy to mind-boggling, this mix of navigational tests, word games, code-crackers, anagrams and mathematical conundrums will put friends and family through their paces.
LIGHTHOUSES OF ENGLAND AND WALES by Nicholas Leach and Tony Denton, pb The History Press, ISBN 9780750986977, £40
This is a spectacular armchair tour of Britain’s coasts. The authors take the reader through England and Wales, from Northumberland to Cornwall to Holyhead, on a journey through lighthouses old and new. Lighthouses were common throughout the Mediterranean during the Roman Empire, and in fact a Pharos constructed by the Romans still survives in the grounds of Dover Castle. Since those bygone times, lighthouses have become a staple of our island nation as aids to navigation. Long may they continue to shine.
FORAGING WITH KIDS: 52 Wild and Free Edibles to Enjoy with your Kids by Adele Nozedar, pb Watkins Media, ISBN 9781786781635, £12.99
As the summer slowly gave way to autumn, I took my two-year-old granddaughter on a hunt for blackberries. Tagging along was my daughter’s American Bulldog. As I picked the berries, I handed them to Connie. When I thought we had enough, I turned round to realise that Connie had fed them to the dog! It was funny but, more importantly, it was an opportunity to engage my granddaughter in nature and its truly abundant harvest. This excellent book is based around over fifty easy-to-identify plants in our cities and countryside, and is filled with practical tips. There are some excellent hand drawings by Lizzie Harper with essential information on plant facts and identification. This is definitely one for the bookshelf.
MOUNTAIN ADVENTURES INNSBRUCK by Sharon Boscoe, pb Cicerone, ISBN 9781852849580, £14.95
If you fancy a multi-activity holiday around the capital of Austria’s Tirol, then this is the book for you. Packed with 60 summer routes around the town, most are accessible by public transport. From day walks to sports climbs, Via Ferrata, mountain biking and mini adventures for the family, they are all covered. There are also details of local festivals and rainy-day activities. The suggestions cover most abilities and ambitions, from gentle strolls to more challenging mountain adventures including hut-to-hut walks. Set in the superb landscapes of the Karwendel and Stubai Alps and Inn Valley, the author leaves nothing to chance in this most comprehensive of go-to guides, with practical advice on transport, accommodation and equipment.
TREKKING THE GR5 TRAIL – BENELUX AND LORRAINE (The North Sea to the Vosges mountains) by Carroll Dorgan, pb Cicerone, ISBN 9781852849597, £17.95
The GR5 is one of the world’s best long distance walking trails, covering an impressive 1,423 miles on its way from the North Sea to the Mediterranean. This guidebook covers the northernmost section, from Hoek van Holland in the Netherlands, through Belgium and Luxembourg, to Schirmeck in northeastern France. As much a cultural experience as it is a walk through nature, this 1,000km section is relatively easy, so is ideal should you not want to find yourself heading up and down steep mountains. With four, five-day itineraries, the route description is accompanied by 1:100K mapping, together with information on points of interest. Also included is background information on the landscape, wildlife, history, clothing and equipment.