Yosemite

#BlackLivesMatter, Black In National Parks Week, Black Lives Matter, Book Review, Books, Diversity, Interview, National Parks, PBS, The Adventure Gap, Yosemite / 05.03.2021

Even though we might be seeing the back end of the global Covid-19 Pandemic many of us are still stuck at home wading through endless meetings over Zoom and other teleconferencing platforms. With the hopes of creating a little community spirit and to encourage folks out there to step away from their screens and maybe crack open a book instead, I started a little group called the Joy Trip Reading Project. Each month we’re taking a deep dive into stories of primarily Black authors whose work centers around...

#BlackLivesMatter, Black Lives Matter, Book Review, Books, Diversity, National Parks, Nelson Institute, The Joy Trip Reading Project, Yosemite / 22.02.2021

Like much of the viewing public it was through the documentary film, The National Parks: America’s Best Idea, that I was first introduced to Yosemite National Park Ranger Shelton Johnson. As a principal character in the film he shares much of his own love and passion for the outdoors as well as the history of these wild places. It is these compelling narratives that help to ground modern people in the present to the land that they love. This connection to the past through the power of storytelling...

An American Ascent, Commentary, Diversity, Essays, Grand Canyon, Magazines, National Geographic, National Parks, Public Land, The Adventure Gap, Yosemite / 14.07.2020

  HALFWAY INTO OUR two-week paddling trip through the Grand Canyon, my longtime friend Jim Moss had a sudden realization. After a thrilling day exploring limpid blue pools and towering waterfalls beneath the desert rim, we sat in beach chairs drinking ice-cold beer along the banks of the Colorado River.“You know? I’ve made more than 40 commercial guiding trips through this place,” he said. “In 25 years, I think you’re the first African American I’ve ever seen down here.”There’s a statistical reason for this: Although Black Americans represent 13.4...

Commentary, Diversity, Madison, Nelson Institute, Yosemite / 23.10.2017

Much of the past weekend I spent happily lamenting an embarrassment of excellent choices. It seemed that the third week of October 2017 was an exceptionally good moment in time to explore, discuss and celebrate the emergence of diversity within the environmental conservation movement. There were at least four events across the country that brought together people of color to share their efforts to make the outdoors more welcoming and accessible to a broader cross-section of the American people. Sadly I was only able to attend two of...

Commentary, Diversity, National Parks, New Century Vision, On Assignment, Yosemite / 07.09.2016

As fate would have it, I was heading to Yosemite any way. It was just a few days in advance of my departure on a two-week Joy Trip with stops in California then Utah, a sharp right turn to Washington DC and back to California. I had already arranged a few interviews to gain some additional perspective on the role that people of color play in efforts to protect and preserve the natural world. So when a travel editor from the Guardian newspaper in London contacted by email...

Diversity, Interview, Life Out Loud, National Parks, New Century Vision, Public Land, Yosemite / 18.08.2016

[dropcaps type='normal' font_size='65' color='#eb9617' background_color='' border_color='']W[/dropcaps]   hen visitors arrive at Yosemite National Park Ranger Shelton Johnson is there to greet them. With a broad smile and a twinkle in his eye he extends a warm hand of welcome to all who enter into this remarkable landscape that is a wonder to all the world to behold. Shelton is among the many dedicated professionals charged with the task of protecting this and other areas of public land across the United States so that they might be enjoyed for...