From Ridgetops to Riverbottoms

A Celebration of the Outdoor Life in Tennessee

  • Author(s): Venable, Sam
  • Series: Outdoor Tennessee Series
  • Imprint: Univ Tennessee Press
  • Publication Date: 1995-08-18
  • Status: Active
  • Available in Paper: Price $29.95 | Buy Now

“Venable’s stories . . . sing the sweet songs of the high hills and deep coves as they ought to be sung—as sure and melodious as the notes from a handcrafted, skillfully played dulcimer.”—from the foreword by Jim Casada

From Ridgetops to Riverbottoms takes the reader on a journey down the many winding roads of the outdoor experience in Tennessee. Such a journey requires a seasoned guide, and there can be no better one than journalist Sam Venable, who has written about the woods and waters of his native state for the past twenty-five years.

For Venable, the outdoor world is meant to be enjoyed. Whether he is casting popping bugs to bluegills during the frenzy of a willow fly hatch, lying motionless on his back in muddy corn stubble as mallards warily circle his decoys, savoring the sounds and scents of a moonlit summer night when smallmouth bass are on the prowl, or issuing plaintive love calls to an amorous wild turkey gobbler, the author’s fascination with outdoor recreation never diminishes. And, as the reader quickly finds, this fascination is contagious.

Along with the lightheartedness and rich humor in these pages, there is an unmistakable love of the land and a deep concern for the endangered bond between nature and humankind. Like the trout in the stream or the deer in the forest, Venable suggests, we are as much a product of the land as any living creature. And what affects one—for better or worse—ultimately affects all.

The Author: Sam Venable is a columnist for The Knoxville News-Sentinel and has been a frequent contributor to such publications as Outdoor Life, Waterfowler’s World, and Tennessee Sportsman. Among his previous books are A Handful of Thumbs and Two Left Feet, Two or Three Degrees Off Plumb, and One Size Fits All and Other Holiday Myths.