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* Need a hiking expert? Go to Bio Page.
* Need a travel writer? Go to Karen's travel writing site.
* Publications list.
* Reviews of Karen's books.
* Site Contents.
View Karen Berger's profile on LinkedIn
* Karen's Hiking Light Podcast
* Karen's hiking blog.


Ice-climbing in Alaska

Hiking in Wyoming's Wind River Range

Karen Berger's Resources About Hiking, Backpacking, Adventure, and Eco-Travel

Thanks for visiting my hiking-writing website. Here's a quick summary of my outdoor writing. For more, go to Bio Page.

* Best-selling book author. More than 700,000 copies of my 15 books are in print.

* Author of hundreds of magazine articles, including recent stories in Robb Report, Westways, Texas Journey, New Mexico Journey, Alabama Journey, Northern New England Journey, Scouting, National Geographic's "Journeys of a Lifetime," and many other publications.

*Publisher and Editor of is a multi-authored travel website featuring authoritative first-hand reviews of travel activities worldwide. We debuted in 2012 and within 6 months, entered the North American Travel Journalists Association competition, in which we received five honors, including a finalist mention the category of "Best Travel Journalism website," and four writing awards.

* Author of hundreds of online articles for markets such as,, Forbestraveler,com,,, and GE's, where I blogged on international health.

* Other online work on my own sites: at Hiker-Writer (hiking), CreateWorkLive (managing a creative career) and MusicalResources (music and music education).

* Outdoors Expert I've walked more than 17,000 miles on six continents through deserts, mountains, canyons, forests, and some of the most spectacular landscapes in the world. My outdoor pursuits include hiking and backpacking, climbing, kayaking and canoeing, scuba diving, horseback-riding, snowshoeing, and back-country skiing. I also enjoy learning about (and writing about) music, culture, and history.

* Two of my books were "Book of the Month Club" selections.

* I was a finalist in the Banff International Mountain Books Competition, for the book, Advanced Backpacking.

* I've been the recipient of three EdPress (Educational Press Society of America) awards: A "Distinguished Achievement Award," for an interview with flutist James Galway, and a finalist in 2004 and 2005 for my instructional column, "Outdoor Smarts" for Scouting Magazine.

Since debuted in May 2012, we've grown to a team of 40 writers from all over the world. The site contains more than 500 articles, and we've received five awards from the North American Travel Journalists Association. We have articles from the Arctic to the Amazon about activities ranging from cruising on the Nile to diving with sharks in Fiji, catching crocodiles in Belize to staying at the ultra luxury Burj Al Arab in Dubai.

Karen's Books

I'm the author of 11 books on hiking (two narrtives, two guidelbooks, and seven skills-oriented how-to books) and one book on scuba diving..

* Backpacking and Hiking, published by DK, continues to sell globally. It has been translated into Spanish, German, French, Czech, Hungarian, Slovak, Norwegian, Swedish, Dutch, Danish, Italian -- and British English. (And yes, it's out in plain old "American," too, along with an abbreviated Boy Scouts edition called -- what else? -- Be Prepared.)

This book was a massive, exciting project with the goal of being a truly comprehensive resource about hiking and backpacking worldwide. DK lavishly designed and produced this title, packing in more than 1000 color photos, including images of mouthwatering vistas to get you inspired, as well as detailed pictures of all manner of equipment and techniques to make your trip as safe and enjoyable as possible. The text includes up-to-date and wide ranging information about both American and international destinations. Hope you like it!

* I'm the author of three titles for W.W. Norton's Trailside Guide series, including the best-selling Hiking and Backpacking (more than 1500,000 copies in print).

* I'm also proud of having written three stories for National Geographic's Journeys of A Lifetime: 500 of the World's Greatest Trips. It's a luscious coffee table book, which is apt to keep you planning trips for the foreseeable future. The book covers adventures on foot, car, bicycle, ship, kayak, horse, and anything else you can think of on all seven continents. My pieces feature Cruising in Tahiti (in the footsteps, or, rather, wake, of Captain Cook), Hiking Montana's Continental Divide (in the footsteps of Lewis and Clark), and Helicopter Hiking in British Columbia.

My Other Life

A grand piano may not fit inside a backpack, but I have no trouble carrying music in my heart, even if I'm on a mountaintop on another continent. I have another life as a classically trained pianist and jazz aficionado. I teach piano in my homes in the Berkshire Hills of western Massachusetts, play local (and sometimes not-so-local) gigs, and have written three books on music:

The Pocket Idiot's Guide to Piano Chords explains how to build chords. If you've ever wanted to play the piano (or once had lessons and have forgotten everything you ever learned) give it a try: The point is to get you playing songs as quickly and easily as possible.

The Complete Idiot's Guide to Teaching Music on Your Own helps independent music teachers get their studios started on the right note.

The Complete Idiot's Guide to Piano Exercises covers beginning and intermediate piano technique. It was published in late fall, 2010.

And my Musical Resources blog contains thoughts, techniques and strategies for musicians, music educators, and parents of music students.

This site and all articles and photos are copyrighted material. Copyright 2002- 2013 by Karen Berger, No articles or photos may be reproduced in any media without the express written permission of the author.

Karen's Outdoors Books

Author Appearances
Learning to Hike
Backpacking basics about hiking worldwide, with 1000 color illustrations
Safe, Sane Stratgies for Enoying the WIlderness with Less on Your Back
Hundreds of Questions and Answers about Hiking.
Field improvisations and creative tips, published in cooperation with Backpacker magazine
Companion to the Trailside Television series. New edition of the best-selling How-to-Hike text.
Companion to the PBS-TV show Trailside
Hiking Guides
Hiking the Appalachian, Pacific Crest, and Continental Divide National Scenic Trails
A narrative field guide to the PCT.
A coffee table book and a trail narrative
Scuba Diving
Used in YMCA certification classes for SCUBA, this is a complete introduction to the sport.