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Neches River User Guide

NechesLargeNeches River User Guide offers outdoor enthusiasts a menu of ways to enjoy one of Texas’ last wild rivers. The Neches River corridor winds through the heart of East Texas, providing some of the best remaining wildlife habitat in the state.

The guide book’s user-friendly maps show the towns, roads, entry points, bridges, public lands, parks, and other landmarks along nearly 360 miles of the river’s course. Each map details practical information about public access points, potential hazards, camping facilities, and GPS coordinates for points of interest.

The guide also features a brief description of the archeology and history of human habitation along the river, as well as photographs of plants and animals common in the bottomland hardwood ecosystem. A final note on conservation efforts, past and present, links readers to Texas Conservation Alliance’s effort to protect the Neches as a Wild and Scenic River.

The Neches River User Guide
By Gina Donovan

Buy NowPrice: $14.95 plus sales tax and $2.00 shipping fee

Paddling The Wild Neches

PaddlingLargeFrom its origins on a sandy hillside in Van Zandt County, the Neches River flows through the heart of East Texas. In its watershed lies some of the wildest country in Texas, tucked amid the remains of one of the finest hardwood forests in the world. With the goal of keeping the Neches flowing free, East Texas native and river man Richard M. Donovan takes readers canoeing down a two-hundred-mile stretch of the upper Neches. Through two national forests and mile after mile of remote river woodlands, he chronicles the river’s natural and cultural history, describes its animal inhabitants, recounts stories of early settlers and East Texas hunting traditions, and calls attention to the recreational potential of the river for paddlers and others, whether residents or visitors.

Donovan also makes a case against damming the river. He convincingly promotes the idea of turning the Neches into a National Wild and Scenic River, preserving forever the river’s natural flow and what remains of the verdant bottomlands of this historic watercourse.

Paddling the Wild Neches
By Richard Donovan

Buy NowPrice: $17.95 plus sales tax and $2.00 shipping fee

Backwoodsman: Stockmen and Hunters Along a Big Thicket River Valley

BackwoodsmanLargeBackwoodsmen presents a detailed social history of the back-country stockmen, hunters, and woodsmen of the Neches River in southeastern Texas. As in parts of Appalachia, many elements of centuries-old herding and hunting life ways survived in the Neches Valley into the 1960s. In what early settlers called the “Big Thicket” or “Big Woods,” everything outside fenced fields was, by long established custom, “open range,” a wooded commons in which hogs, cattle, and backwoodsmen were free to roam. Sitton details their daily activities, relying mainly on oral history interviews he conducted with dozens of Neches Valley woodsmen.

Backwoodsmen: Stockmen and Hunters Along a Big Thicket River Valley
By Thad Sitton

Buy NowPrice: $19.95 plus sales tax and $2.00 shipping

The Living Waters of Texas

LivingwatersLargeIn ten impassioned essays, veteran Texas environmental advocates and conservation professionals step outside their roles as lawyers, lobbyists, administrators, consultants, and researchers to write about water. Their personal stories of what the springs, rivers, bottomlands, bayous, marshes, estuaries, bays, lakes, and reservoirs mean to them and to our state come alive in the landscape photography of Charles Kruvand.

Allied with the Texas Living Waters Project (a joint education and policy initiative of the Lone Star Chapter of the Sierra Club, the National Wildlife Federation, and the Environmental Defense Fund, among others), editor Ken Kramer joins his fellow activists in a call to keep rivers flowing, to protect wildlife habitat, and to save tax dollars by using water efficiently and sustainably.

Chapter “Falling in Love with Bottomlands” written by TCA’s Janice Bezanson!

The Living Waters of Texas
Edited by Ken Kramer

Buy NowPrice: $24.95 plus sales tax and $5.00 shipping

Texas Legacy Project

TexaslegacyLargeTo find and preserve stories of courage and perseverance, the Conservation History Association of Texas launched the Texas Legacy Project in 1998, traveling thousands of miles to conduct hundreds of interviews with people from all over the state. These remarkable stories tell of efforts by veteran conservationists and ordinary citizens to preserve the natural legacy of Texas.

This book holds stories from more than sixty people who represent a variety of causes, communities, and walks of life—from a West Texas grocer fighting nuclear waste to an Austin lobbyist pressing for green energy. Each speaks from the heart in personal reminiscences and first-hand accounts of battles fought for land and wildlife, for public health, and for a voice in media and politics. These impassioned accounts remind us of the importance of protecting and conserving the natural resources in our own backyards… wherever they may be.

The Texas Legacy Project: Stories of Courage and Conservation
Edited by David Todd

Buy NowPrice: $24.95 plus sales tax and $5.00 shipping

Caddo: Visions of a Southern Cypress Lake

Book Caddo Visions of a Southern Cypress Lake

In a stunning tribute to one of Texas’ most enigmatic waterways, a veteran East Texas historian and a professional photographer have together created an homage to a lake like no other—half Texas, half Louisiana, a swampy labyrinth of bald cypress and water plants filled with mystery, legend, and a staggering amount of biological complexity.

Classified as a Category 1 Habitat for wildlife by the US Fish and Wildlife Service and encompassing a state wildlife management area as well as a state park, Caddo Lake and adjacent areas have also been designated as a Ramsar Site under the international convention to preserve world-class wetlands and their waterfowl. In both words and pictures, writer Thad Sitton and photographer Carolyn Brown have captured the human, animal, and plant life of Caddo, as well as the history of the lake itself, better likened to an ever-changing network of cypress woodlands, bayou-like channels, water-plant meadows, and hardwood bottoms covered more or less by water.

Caddo: Visions of a Southern Cypress Lake

By Thad Sitton and Photography by Carolyn Brown

Buy Now Price: $24.95 plus sales tax and $5.00 shipping

Large hardcover, approximate size: Height 10.25 inches by Width 11.25 inches

Let the River Run Wild: Saving the Neches River

Book Let the River Run WildLet the River Run Wild: Saving the Neches River

The Neches River is not wild in its youth. It flows gently along pastures, under barb-wire fences, and through culverts lying under asphalt roads. It flows placidly through East Texas pastures and farm land, watering stock and nourishing the fringe trees along its margin.

The river follows its valley and bottomland through thickets and dense woods, but its path is always narrow. Even when it floods, the water does not stray far from its banks. The young Neches nourishes the usual rural farmland population of deer, ’coons, ’possums and polecats, but nothing wild and scary, unless you count wild cat squirrels and scary water moccasins. When night falls, the river banks stir and scurry with wildlife sniffs and snorts and hogs rooting and frogs and toads in chorus. But the sound of the river is gentle.

With over one hundred photographs and maps, Let the River Run Wild! transports readers along the wooded banks of the Neches in a photographic journey that highlights the flora and fauna inhabiting the woods along this coursing river from its narrow upper reaches that run from Lake Palestine dam to its mouth on Sabine Lake. Learn about the highly controversial fight to save the the upper Neches led by the Texas Conservation Alliance and why the Neches River is listed as number six on the most endangered rivers list, complied by the American Rivers organization.

Let the River Run Wild: Saving the Neches River

By F.E. Abernethy and Photography by Adrian Van Dellen

Buy Now Price: $24.95 plus sales tax and $5.00 shipping

Note: Large hardcover book, approximate dimensions are: Height 11.25 inches by Width 14.00 inches

Last Chance: Preserving Life on Earth

LastchanceLarge“This is an unabashed call to each and every American to moral duty for the future of life on earth,” begins National Wildlife Federation president and CEO Larry J. Schweiger in this stirring exposé and call to action. Speaking to us not just as a conservation leader but also as an outdoor lover and a parent, Schweiger describes the causes and effects of global warming on our wildlife, ecosystems, and human life as we know it.

With an engaging, down-to-earth tone (and a dash of wit; e.g., “What Happens in Greenland Will Not Stay in Greenland”), Schweiger breaks down the science behind our looming environmental catastrophe. Not letting go of hope, he also offers practical solutions and proposes a plan of action for everyday citizens. Last Chance will inspire each of us to take part in restoring the vital connection to our natural world before it’s too late.

Last Chance: Preserving Life on Earth
By Larry J. Schweiger

Buy NowPrice: $14.95 plus sales tax and $2.00 shipping

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