Eugene Buchanan

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Outdoor Parents, Outdoor Kids
The fate of the environment and our children’s health rests with connecting kids with the outdoors. Outdoor Parents, Outdoor Kids shines a much-needed headlamp on ways parents can accomplish this and more.

With an informative and entertaining look at biking, camping, swimming, paddling, hiking, fishing, snowsports, climbing and more, award-winning author Eugene Buchanan extends parents a helping hand in getting their kids outside and instilling in them a respect for their health and the environment. It’s a set of training wheels for first-time parents or those inexperienced in the outdoors, and an essential guide for hair-pulling veterans.

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Advanced Praise for Outdoor Parents, Outdoor Kids
“An excellent beginner’s guide to help parents instill in their kids a love of outdoor activities – crucial to children’s emotional and physical health
–Richard Louv, author of “Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children from Nature-Deficit Disorder”

“I don’t know which is more challenging—summiting Everest or raising teen-agers! As Eugene Buchanan knows, preparation is the key to both endeavors, and his book will help any parent navigate the rewarding outdoor adventures that can be had with their children. This entertaining and informative book showcases how activities of all shapes and sizes can be as fun, informative, challenging and inspirational as making it to the top of the highest peak.”
–U.S. Senator Mark Udall, Colorado

“Trying to hip your kids to the places and sports you love best can be surprisingly hard, even not-fun. That’s why OUTDOOR PARENTS, OUTDOOR KIDS is so valuable. Packed with practical advice, but also humor — Buchanan isn’t the smug expert who makes you feel like an idiot, but a buddy who’s been there — it flags up the challenges you want to consider before everyone, mom and dad, included, are ready to throw a tantrum, and offers frequent reminders of why it’s absolutely worth the effort.”
— Brad Wieners, Editor, Men’s Journal

“‘Go to the mountains and get their blessings,’ John Muir once said. Nowadays, however, too many of us, especially our children, suffer from a Nature deficit. This wonderful book will go a long way toward remedying that.”
–Ken Burns, Filmmaker

“If you’re hoping to pass on the thrill of outdoor fun to your kids, read this book. Buchanan’s rich–and frequently hilarious–experiences offer essential advice to any adventure-loving parent.”
–Christopher Keyes, Editor, Outside magazine

“Our responsibility as parents is to open our kids’ eyes to the world around us and beyond. Outdoor Parents, Outdoor Kids nails it perfectly on how to enable us to just that. Buchanan is a master.”
–Bill Gamber, President, Big Agnes

“A fun and informative guide that will help families experience a lifetime of wonder in the great outdoors.”
–Frank Hugelmeyer, President/CEO, Outdoor Industry Association

“A hilarious and highly informative resource that makes life easier for all parents as Buchanan shares the lessons he’s learned the hard way…”
–Climbing legend Royal Robbins (founder of Royal Robbins Outdoor Clothing, author of To Be Brave)

“The importance of getting more kids outside has been a driving force for Kelty KIDS for two decades. For those looking to take the first steps toward a fit outdoor lifestyle, or to nurture a child’s respect for the earth, Eugene Buchanan’s “Outdoor Parents, Outdoor Kids” puts all the essentials in a refreshing new light.”
–Kenny Ballard, President, Kelty/Kelty KIDS

“Wish I’d had this book when my kids were snuggly sized. We muddled through okay but Buchanan gives young parents what they really need: good info, superb tips, and the inspiration to head out.”
–Todd Balf, author of The Last River: The Tragic Race for Shangri-la and Major: A Black Athlete, A White Era, and the Fight to Be the World’s Fastest Human Being.

“Eugene Buchanan is the real deal. He’s a gifted outdoor athlete, loving father, and decorated journalist. And Outdoor Parents, Outdoor Kids combines all he knows.”
–Philip Armour, former editor of ForbesLife Mountain Time

“In a book loaded with practical advice and hilarious anecdotes, Buchanan never loses track of the best reason for kids and parents to play together outside: Because it is fun.”
– Jeff Moag, Editor-in-Chief, Canoe and Kayak magazine

“A great read that leads the way to healthier kids and a healthier planet, written by one of my favorite writers. Fun, health, and a really cool perspective on the best ways to interact with our world. A must-read for anyone who wants healthier, happier kids right now.”
–Peter Kray, Editor, Ski Press World; Founder, Shred White and Blue

“Those many of us who are rightly concerned about the “nature deficit disorder” afflicting a high percentage of America’s increasingly out-of-shape and overweight youth these days can breathe a huge sigh of relief with Eugene Buchanan’s Outdoor Parents, Outdoor Kids. This is an excellent primer for encouraging parents to get their kids away from the Xbox and out into the woods, where young people belong.”
–M. John Fayhee, Editor, Mountain Gazette

“The ultimate support group for outdoor parenting.”
—Doug Schnitzspahn, editor-in-chief Elevation Outdoors

The Perfect Gift (for you and a loved one)!


Brothers on the Bashkaus: A Siberian Paddling Adventure

Pub date: April 2007
PB • $15
ISBN 10: 1-55591-608-2; ISBN 13: 978-1-55591-608-4256 pages
5 x 8
TRAVEL/Special Interest/Adventure

Join Eugene Buchanan, former publisher and editor-in-chief of Paddler magazine, as he wins the first-ever river-oriented Shipton-Tilman Grant from W.L. Gore & Assoc.’s only to end up on a hair-raising 28-day decent of the Bashkaus, one of the hardest rivers in all Siberia. Sidetracked by Latvia’s Team Konkas, they paddle rafts made from germ warfare suits, don lifejackets made from soccer balls adn wine bladders, trade vodka to gun-toting horseman for freshly butchered sheep, and language and cultural barriers aside to bond as brothers in one of paddling literature’s wildest rides.
Value-added Bonus! The author will sign/dedicate all copies ordered from this site (see email link under ordering information).

About the Author


Eugene Buchanan is the 14-year publisher and editor-in-chief of Paddler magazine and founder of Paddling Life. A Business/Economics graduate of The Colorado College, the former ski patrol, raft guide and kayak instructor also enjoys a successful freelance writer with articles in Outside, National Geographic Adventure, Men’s Journal, Sports Afield, The New York Times and other national publications. A member of New York’s Explorers Club, he is an avid adventurer with several first descents to his credit. His passion for traveling, writing, and paddling has taken him to more than 30 countries on six of the seven continents. He lives with his wife and two daughters, a block away from the Yampa River, the last remaining free-flowing tributary to the Colorado River.

Ordering Information


Order by Credit Card

Order by Mail

To order by check, send check or money order ($17 per book, including shipping) to Paddling Life/Brothers on the Bashkaus, P.O. Box 775589, Steamboat Springs, CO 80477. Include mailing address for where book(s) is to be mailed, as well as specific dedication notes. Orders will be mailed as soon as check is received.

If ordering by credit card, send dedication specifics to eugene@paddlinglife.net.

Recent Praise for Brothers on the Bashkaus


Cl;ick here for whacky Russian river-running footage

“A Class-V ride through both big waters and a fast-changing culture.”
—Jon Bowermaster, National Geographic Adventure author/adventurer

“This is a book in which the author is on fire with his subject. Eugene Buchanan studies, chases, and pours down one of the world’s wildest rivers in a journey sometimes terrifying, often chilling, but always mesmeric and drenched with resonance. The story is swiftly moving, yet it superbly delineates the cultural and political context out of which this expedition arose. Buchanan is a gifted narrator, with seeming total recall and a lucid candor and self-awareness, as well as a talent for painting topographical views of gorges and rapids that have an almost surreal power. Brothers on the Bashkaus is, in a fashion, an elegy for a lost moment of cultural and environmental first contact. It is a torrent of a book… Take the plunge!”
—Richard Bangs, founding partner of Mountain Travel/Sobek, author of 11 books, including Mystery of the Nile, Adventures without End, The Lost River, River Gods, and Riding the Dragon’s Back

“Adventure paddling is fun enough, but it becomes epic, zany, and outrageous when it’s set in the manic madness of modern Russia. Imagine Hunter S. Thompson—without the drugs—running Class VI. Can’t conjure up the image? Sit down on a comfortable chair, get some raw pork fat for munchies, and read Eugene Buchanan’s Brothers on the Bashkaus for a wild, hungry ride in improbable boats with a bunch of crazies. The book exposes the unadulterated spirit of whitewater adventure—stripped clean of all the fancy stuff, like paddles and lifejackets.”
—Jon Turk, author of In the Wake of the Jomon and Cold Oceans

“Buchanan’s blood is two parts river. This is a memorable tale of adventure, friendship, and a confluence, or collision, of cultures. Buchanan and his cohorts get tossed almost by happenstance onto the wildest of rivers in a land where the gear is homemade, local horsemen go crazy on strong tea, memorials to dead paddlers perch on the banks, and, as at an execution, nothing can happen until a last cigarette is smoked.”
—Peter Heller, author of Hell or High Water, Outside magazine contributor

“Your fate is tied to strangers in a strange land in—strangest of all—a craft hewn from the forest primeval… a monster Siberian whitewater river before you. A reader could want for no better guide than Eugene Buchanan, an expert storyteller who knows firsthand that if you are good, lucky, and don’t mind daily fat cubes, the best expeditions sometimes emerge out of the worst predicaments. Superb.”
—Todd Balf, author of The Last River and the forthcoming Comet: The Untold Story of Major Taylor and How He Beat the Color Line (Crown Publishing, 2007)

“Eugene Buchanan’s paddling expertise and sharp reportorial eye will sweep you breathlessly down one of the world’s wildest, toughest, and most remote rivers, in company with the knights-errant of Siberian whitewater. A fascinating cultural and adventure read.”
—Peter Stark, author of The Last Breath and At the Mercy of the River

Review Links:


Rocky Mountain News (Summer Pick/A Rating)
Armchairinterviews.com
Grand Rapids Press:
Vail Daily:
Perceptive Travel:

More Reviews


BROTHERS ON THE BASHKAUS, by Eugene Buchanan. (Fulcrum, $15.95). The editor-in- chief of Paddling Life magazine and three colleagues embark on a 26-day –whitewater trip down Siberia’s treacherous Bashkaus River with a Latvian paddling team acting as their guides and protectors from crooked bus drivers marauding horsemen and more. Read it because: It’s an entertaining adventure that details the former Soviet Union way of living off the land, with everything from paddles to pontoons made from scratch.
–Laurence Washington, Rocky Mountain News (Summer Pick!)

In 1992, Eugene Buchanan, publisher and editor of Paddler magazine, traveled with three friends to the former Soviet Union, joined up with a group of Latvian paddlers they’d never met and ran one of the hardest, most dangerous rivers in Russia, the Bashkaus. A few years later, NOLS (National Outdoor Leadership School) used the Bashkus trip as a case study to demonstrate why some expeditions succeed and others fail. So, do they make it or not? As you expectantly turn every page of Buchanan’s new book chronicling their journey, Brothers on the Bashkaus, you’ll almost forget you asked that question as you get sucked into the story and get to know the cast of characters. Starting with the making of the raft, which includes “300 peeled hot dogs of larch [wood],” logs, webbing and a few pieces of metal salvaged from a cot, to the rationing and counting out of every single bite of food, including the jellybeans Buchanan and friends brought, to the Russian version of rock, paper, scissors (dubbed “RoShamBolovich”), Buchanan draws you in to the adventure as if you were there eating pork fat and fish-eye soup right along with them. His detail-rich recounting of their adventures is also punctuated with brief yet insightful commentaries and bits of history. As much an exploration into the culture of post-Soviet Union Russia as it is a story about boating and bonding, Brothers on the Bashkaus has you terrified one minute and laughing your ass off the next. Be forewarned: You might find yourself staying up all night to finish it.
–Wend magazine

The genre of the adventure-sports memoir is clogged with more refuse than the summit of Everest is with rich white businessmen, gear-toting Sherpas and discarded oxygen bottles. Rarely do adventure-sports authors tread any daring literary ground; with a few exceptions, the whole lot should be tossed into the same crevasses they negotiate, the rivers they paddle or the pits of the fiery volcanoes they climb. Brothers on the Bashkaus, by Colorado author Eugene Buchanan, is an exception. (After all, the Colorado author writes for National Geographic Adventure and Men’s Journal and edits Paddling Life.) On the surface, Bashkaus tells the story of Buchanan’s 1992 river run down some of the most difficult whitewater in Siberia. But it also ventures into more intriguing territory surrounding the culture and climate of remote, post-Soviet Russia.
–Rick White, Westword

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