In suburban Arizona, 1964, Connie Helmericks announced to her two daughters, 12-year-old Ann and 14-year-old Jean, “We’re going to make a canoe expedition to the Arctic Ocean.” And for two successive summers, that’s exactly what they did. Down the Wild River North (328 pages) is the vividly told story of their adventures in the remote northern reaches…

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After many years of paddling the waterways and outer coasts of the Pacific Northwest, author and artist Lou McKee planned a short kayaking trip near Vancouver Island with friends and family that unexpectedly became a yearly tradition. During the first trip that Pacific Northwestern summer, they chanced upon an enchanting stretch of beach and spent…

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Jean Aspen, daughter of arctic explorer and author Constance Helmericks, began life in the wilderness. Throughout six decades, the natural world has remained central to her. What began as a series of letters to her son, Lucas, when she and her husband Tom set out to search for a different future, evolved over the seasons…

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