Leaning on the Wind

Under the Spell of the Great Chinook

By (author): Sid Marty
ISBN 9781894974622
Softcover | Publication Date: May 11, 2009
Book Dimensions: 5.5 in x 8.5 in
352 Pages

About the Book

A finalist for the 1995 Governor General’s Literary Award for English-language non-fiction

Winner of the Mountain Environment and Culture Award at the 1995 Banff Mountain Book Festival

Leaning on the Wind is a love song of the west, sung to the tune of the wild chinook wind. Sid Marty skilfully weaves together the prehistory of Alberta with the experiences of First Nations, miners, early homesteaders and his own family. At the centre of his tale is the Marty homestead, located in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains. Sid looks back through generations of his family and celebrates the feats of wild creatures and wild westerners.

The past comes alive in these pages, but so does the present, where you will meet cowboy poets, bull riders, sailplane pilots, desperate chicken farmers, curmudgeonly broncos, a homicidal cow elk, some dubious politicians and several fierce defenders of the earth. Humour and sardonic wit abound, along with abundant affection for the western earth and the people who depend on its bounties and experience its extremes of wind, frost and drought.

A western classic, Leaning on the Wind is as evocative today as when it was first published in 1995.

About the Author(s)

Sid Marty is a former park warden who has been a full-time freelance writer and singer-songwriter for 30 years. He has been a frequent contributor to Canadian Geographic and has also written for radio and television. His books about life in the mountains and the Canadian prairies have been consistent bestsellers. His 2007 book, The Black Grizzly of Whiskey Creek, earned Sid his second nomination for a Governor General’s Award. He lives near Pincher Creek, Alberta, at the foot of the Rocky Mountains.


“[F]ine writing and absorbing narrative” —Maggie Siggins, the Globe and Mail
“Surely one of the best books about Alberta ever written.” —Kevin Connolly, Equinox magazine
“These essays are so vital, so vibrant, so full of life, you just want to jump up and down for joy." —Edmonton Journal