Book: Yellowstone Past and Present

There are loads of guidebooks written about Yellowstone National Park, but few capture its essence and evolution quite like Yellowstone National Park: Past and Present (Schiffer Publishing, $25). Unlike a standard guide, this book is 125 pages of breathtaking photography, little known facts, and interesting anecdotes about how Yellowstone became the most well known park in the country. Even better, it’s organized like a guidebook—giving you a complete historical timeline, tips on where to stay, and info on wildlife—but filled to the spine with colorful photos of Yellowstone today from 100 years ago to today. See old postcard images dating back to the turn of the century, a 1930s dining room menu from the Old Faithful Inn, and Mad Men–style full-page advertisements for the Union Pacific railroad that used to take 1950s families straight to the gates of Yellowstone. Probably meant more for your coffee table than your backpack, this book is one to pick up for the history and photography enthusiast in your life. Available at Country Bookshelf.