Riding Into the Heart of Patagonia

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RidingIntoTheHeartofPatagonia_lg Nancy Pfeiffer

Bink Books
250 pp. ● 5.5×8.5
$14.95 (pb) ● $8.99 (eb)
ISBN 978-1-945805-67-7 (pb)

TRAVEL/ Essays & Travelogues
TRAVEL/ South America/Argentina

Publication date: May 2018

About the Book

Beside a rain-swollen river in Patagonia, a man approached on a horse. His mount, a rusty red beauty, sported the short-trimmed mane and neatly squared-off tail of a well-kept horse. The man wore goatskin chaps, a woolen poncho, and the jaunty black beret typical of the region. This pair belonged to this place in a way I could only dream of.

The man stared at us. We were up to our knees in mud and dwarfed by huge backpacks. It was apparent we had money, but we had no horses.

“Por qué no tienes caballos?” he asked as he rode into the river.

At that moment I knew. I wanted to travel this country like the people who lived there. I wanted to know this place as only one on horseback could.

As a novice horsewoman, Nancy Pfeiffer took off across Patagonia alone on horseback. Over the next two decades and three thousand kilometers of rugged horse trail, the hospitable people who live there took her in, and Patagonia slipped silently into her soul. As if watching a beloved child grow up, Nancy bore witness to the subtle, yet disturbing, changes barreling down on Patagonia.

For Readers and Book Clubs:
Reading Guide


“This book begins as one kind of epic—a novice horseback rider in her 30s, making her solitary way across one of the world’s great wildernesses. That would be reason enough to read this absorbing account—but at the end it morphs into something even deeper, the story of her participation in the glorious nonviolent struggle (conducted largely from the saddle) to stop the damming of Patagonia’s great rivers. An adventure in the truest sense of the word.” — Bill McKibben, author Wandering Home

“Nancy Pfeiffer writes with an easy going, conversational grace, with pithy aphorisms tossed in to spice things up. Riding into the Heart of Patagonia is a story of a cultural landscape that is changing rapidly as all cultural landscapes are changing. It is a tale of a lone woman and a horse, one woman and herself, one woman on the most ancient of all journeys. It is a must read for those of us who have experienced adventure ourselves, and equally important for those who can appreciate the awakening on a physical journey, without necessarily seeking the hardship itself.” — Jon Turk, The Raven’s Gift

“Saddle up. These gutsy journeys will not only take you into the wild, tangled, changing heart of Patagonia, but also lead you deep into its soul. Pfeiffer is extraordinarily spunky and tough, but it is her gentleness, astute observations, and seasoned insight that will make her story resonate long after you have warmed up by the fire.” — Jill Fredston, author of Rowing to Latitude