There’s very little that can beat being in the great outdoors, mixing it with nature. Those morning sunrises, the reward for pushing yourself. Glorious. But, let’s be honest, it’s unlikely you’re going to be out adventuring every single day.

Whether it’s through injury, unforgiving weather, your mate Steve breaking down on the M6 on his way to pick you up, or just that awkward thing called ‘life’ getting in the way, there are times when staying indoors is the only thing to do.

Nevertheless, being stuck indoors doesn’t mean having to sit through hours of netflix, watching dog videos on YouTube, and putting off that mountain of laundry (although you should probably tackle that at some point, crampons and all). One of the best ways of passing your downtime is with a good book. The folks at Vertebrate Publishing have a veritable canon of books that will stoke your passion for adventure - and give you great ideas for next time you have a chance to get out there amongst it.

“Based in Sheffield, right on the very doorstep of the Peak District, Vertebrate Publishing really know what they’re talking about."

Based in Sheffield, right on the very doorstep of the Peak District, Vertebrate Publishing have been inspiring adventure since 2004 when they released the acclaimed Dark Peak Mountain Biking: True Grit Trails. They’ve since published a further seventeen mountain bike guide books, which together cover much of the UK. Drawing on extensive research and tapping into deep wells of insider knowledge, these are among our favourite guidebooks and usually our first port of call when planning our next bike trip.

Their books and guides aren’t just limited to the mountain bike world. Far from it. The selection of hillwalking, climbing, bouldering, and cycle route guides are truly exceptional. Again, all of these are written by people who really know the areas they’re writing about, the ins-and-outs of the trails, where to stay and (crucially) where to stop for a pint or a decent meal en route.


If the inspiration you crave is more character and personality based, then Vertebrate Publishing also have a whole host of biographies from the most esteemed adventures out there, both today and in years gone by. The award cabinet for the gongs that these books have been picking up since the first one was published back in 2009 is starting to heave. As such, you can literally judge a Vertebrate book by its cover, knowing what’s inside is going to be excellent.

Obviously, the titles they have vary wildly, and we couldn’t decide which ones to include in the Outdoor 100, so we thought we’d recommend the whole range. As to which one is best for you, your best bet is to head over to their website and take a look for yourself.

Vertebrate Publishing Walking, Climbing & Biking Guidebooks