Being loves of nature, animals, and the outdoors, we are committed to constantly learning and growing, and we’re always on the lookout for great resources to help us do just that. We’ve compiled a list of some of our favorite books, items, and other tools that we’ve found helpful over the years. Whether you’re looking to improve your rock-hounding skills, expand your birding knowledge, or simply find some inspiration, we hope you’ll find something here that fits the bill. Of course, everyone’s preferences are different, but these are resources that we’ve personally used or read and found to be valuable. We hope you find them helpful too!

The Minerals Encyclopedia: 700 Minerals, Gems and Rocks

This guidebook includes over 700 different minerals and rocks, conveniently grouped by color to aid navigation throughout the book. Minerals such as blue, red, yellow, brown, green, white, and black crystals are included, as well as brown and gray sedimentary rocks, and even meteorites for the fortunate few who come across them.

Ontario’s Ghost Town Heritage

This is a fascinating book by Ontario historian Ron Brown, and explores over 80 accessible ghost towns in all parts of Ontario. It gives detailed driving directions, information on each town with photos.  We really enjoyed this book and visiting some of these amazing old towns.

Feed the Birds

Attract and Identify 196 Common North American Birds

Feed the Birds is designed as a resource for beginners and experienced birdwatchers alike. It covers 196 bird species that are attracted to backyard bird feeders.  This book helps the reader not only attract and identify birds but also understand their behavior and adaptations to the environment. A wide variety of feeders and seed types are presented with helpful tips on how to attract the largest variety of birds.  I love watching the birds at my feeder, and I found this book really helpful.

The Explorer’s Guide to Algonquin Park

This book is an excellent resource for anyone who is going to be visiting Algonquin Park.  The author, Michael Runtz, skillfully guides first-time visitors and seasoned explorers alike in this new, expanded color edition of The Explorer’s Guide to Algonquin Park.  We visit the park all the time and had no idea of some of the neat places this book told us about.  Definitely a great resource.

Backroads of Ontario

We love country drives and exploring new areas, and this book has been really helpful in finding new and exciting places and roads to explore. It guides drivers and cyclists along some of Ontario’s most interesting backroads, each with its own distinct story to tell.  There are more than 30 routes in all, each illustrated with photos and an easy to follow map.  It will guide you to picturesque villages, century-old mills, dramatic scenery, architectural curiosities and even a ghost town or two.