The Oregon Trail - Rinker Buck

The Oregon Trail

By Rinker Buck

  • Release Date: 2015-06-30
  • Genre: History
Score: 4
From 165 Ratings


#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • #1 Indie Next Pick • Winner of the PEN New England Award

“Enchanting…A book filled with so much love…Long before Oregon, Rinker Buck has convinced us that the best way to see America is from the seat of a covered wagon.” —The Wall Street Journal

“Amazing…A real nonfiction thriller.” —Ian Frazier, The New York Review of Books

“Absorbing…Winning…The many layers in The Oregon Trail are linked by Mr. Buck’s voice, which is alert and unpretentious in a manner that put me in mind of Bill Bryson’s comic tone in A Walk in the Woods.” —Dwight Garner, The New York Times

A major bestseller that has been hailed as a “quintessential American story” (Christian Science Monitor), Rinker Buck’s The Oregon Trail is an epic account of traveling the 2,000-mile length of the Oregon Trail the old-fashioned way—in a covered wagon with a team of mules—that has captivated readers, critics, and booksellers from coast to coast. Simultaneously a majestic journey across the West, a significant work of history, and a moving personal saga, Buck’s chronicle is a “laugh-out-loud masterpiece” (Willamette Week) that “so ensnares the emotions it becomes a tear-jerker at its close” (Star Tribune, Minneapolis) and “will leave you daydreaming and hungry to see this land” (The Boston Globe).


  • The Oregon Trail

    By Tony in Denver
    Engaging and thoughtfully presented as Buck moves seamlessly between his encounters and similar encounters of those who went before. A thoroughly enjoyable read. One big problem - where is the bibliography? How can you continually refer to and use other sources and not provide the reader with the opportunity to explore further?
  • Excellent story about a man, his brother and a team of mules

    By qmarsha
    Rinker Buck has written a very well detailed story of his travels over the Oregon Trail via wagon. His story is deeply personal but also filled and enriched with the history of those who traveled before him. This was a book I was sad to have come to its end yet happy at its conclusion. Unlike Buck, I worried from the beginning about what would happen to the mules when he came to the end of the trail. The choices he made along his way may not have always been good or right but they worked out in the end. With his mules, Buck was both good and right.
  • Author constantly goes off-topic

    By Felt tab
    I purchased the book thinking I was going to learn about the Oregon Trail. There are a few interesting facts and experiences presented; unfortunately the author's bitterness about life hijacks the book, and literally chapters are spent as he complains about his life, his father, and his emotional health. I felt like I wasted my time reading the book.
  • Captivating!

    By MN 3711
    I absolutely recommend this excellent historical read!
  • A Nice Mix of History and Adventure

    By N1077G
    Rinker Buck takes us back in time to experience what conditions were really like during the great Western Migration on the Oregon Trail. Since I grown up in the Great Plains of Kansas, the early sections of the book reminded me of the beauty and majesty of the prairie, but also helped me appreciate the strength and determination of the people who pioneered it. As a travelogue, the book visits the major milestone locations of the Trail and gives some of the backstory to them. But as with his other book Flight of Passage, this one is most interesting as Rinker delves into his own psyche and how the Trail exposes the feelings he has for his family, and most of all the somewhat tortured relationship with his father.
  • The Oregon Trail

    By History in real time
    Well written ... Read it in record time as I felt like I was riding along with them. Thoroughly enjoyed the history of a trail I often think about, since I do live in Oregon.