Road Trip Warrior
My whole life has been a story that includes travel. When I was a teenager I enjoyed organizing rafting trips for my friends. Later on, I started working as a tour operator for hiking and adventure travel where I fell in love with national parks in Italy, Austria and Germany. Having the opportunity to work for tour operators, travel agents and the media, I moved to the United States to discover America’s great national parks. During my last 11 years, I have traveled over 300,00 miles across the United States by car, alone, but also with friends and families with the mission to visit every national park, state park and national monument in the United States, discovering the best view points, trails and hidden gems nearby rural communities that are off the beaten path. Being a travel and tech geek, I love gadgets and I truly believe that by using the latest information technology we can highlight a national park road trip in a complete new way, to inspire millions about America’s best idea, to plan their vacation of a lifetime.
National Park Outdoor Enthusiast
Whether it’s a high alpine sunset, smoke rising from an ancient city, or the gleeful smile on hiker’s face as they approach a summit, Emily Sierra brings you into the moment. Emily is an ardent traveler and outdoorswoman, and is always crafting her next adventure. Her thirst for new experiences has led her all over the globe and deep into the American west. Emily’s stories are best told over a hot cup of coffee or cold craft IPA. If you don’t catch up with Emily at your local brewery, her photos and writing make for a colorful re-creation of the tales. Emily’s passion for the Rocky Mountains has led her to explore them on foot, mountain bike, a pair of cross-country skis, or anything else you should offer. With her husband, dog and camera by her side, there is no adventure too grand.
Road Tripper & Landscape Photographer
From a very early age, I travelled to a variety of European countries, as well as further afield. It seems fitting, years on from the days of my childhood, where I would stare up at a giant poster of Mount Everest, that I now end up a travel photographer and writer for Visit USA Parks.
In my view, the road trip is allegorical; it is symbolic of our drive to leave no stone unturned, but on a very personal level. Sure, google maps can show us an aerial photo of Utah, Arizona, or Oregon – but it will never compare to the experience of reaching those places yourself, by your own means. This is something I think even aircraft travel misses. Conversely, when you drive those hundreds or thousands of miles, you feel the scale of the earth - you realize your place on it - and it is humbling.
Sarah is a freelance writer, a graduate student of Literature at Colorado State University, and an enthusiastic explorer of her state. She loves to travel and eventually hopes to cross all of the national parks off her bucket list!
I'm Shawn Pahl, and I'm a desert landscape photographer based out of Phoenix, Arizona. I grew up in Orange County California and West Lafayette Indiana where I graduated from Purdue University. Currently I work as an Environmental, Health and Safety Manager in the aerospace extruded aluminum field. I fell in love with the Southwest after moving here from Los Angeles. The idea that such an incredible amount of diversity could be contained in a relatively small area of our country was astonishing to me. The more i explore the land around me the more I realize that I'm just scratching the surface of this amazing land. I spend my free time roaming the vast Southwest in search of the ever changing views of places I already know, and ones I'm yet to discover. I believe that education and conservation are the keys to all our State Parks future and my photography is a tool to achieve that. From the highest peak in Arizona (12,633') and to the bottom of the Grand Canyon. From the Northern Arizona views in Monument Valley to walking the Mexican border in Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument.. it's truly a land like no other and I strive to document it's beauty.
Powder Matt Mosteller
Adventurer, Blogger, Author, Speaker and Freelance Journalist
Canadian Rockies based influencer, lifelong ski bum and outdoor adventurer, and sought after speaker whose work has been published in countless major city newspapers, magazines and outdoor centric websites. When not deep in it- Powder that is, Powder Matt can be found running wild rivers, backpacking long trails and sampling craft coffee in a mountain town near you.
One year, while his friends were busy getting jobs and settling down, a young Matt Mosteller spent 63 days living in his car so he could ski every day. He’s still seeking outdoor adventure daily and his stories can be seen regularly in the Calgary Herald, Vancouver Sun, Montreal Gazette,Globe and Mail, Toronto Star, Vancouver Sun, Explore Magazine and many others. His first book, described by The Calgary Herald as “a kind of handbook for living life to the fullest,” The Adventurer’s Guide to Living a Happy Life offers 63 daily meditations to help you broaden your horizons and achieve the 'goosebump' moments in life (sleeping in the car is optional). Mosteller is a crusader, constantly trying to find ways to fight childhood obesity and to get people outside to experience the benefits of Nature!
Best-In-Class Social Influencer
Shelli Johnson is a long-time traveler, adventurer, writer and entrepreneur. She is the founder of a thriving tourism publishing company, YellowstonePark.com and National Park Trips. During her 15 years of operating that tourism company, Shelli wrote more than 2 million words of original travel-related content. Shelli is an epic traveler, adventurer and guide, and reports enthusiastically about her travels and adventures to her large social networks, and in her two blogs. She is an expert at travel blogging, and always has media in hand to capture and share her adventures. Shelli is married and has three sons, and lives in her favorite place in the world, Wyoming’s Wind River Range.
Lauren Monitz is a travel/food writer and social media influencer specializing in approachable adventures and offbeat explorations. From becoming a certified viking in Iceland to blackwater rafting in New Zealand and eating her way around Asia, she intentionally seeks out the most unique and photogenic attractions wherever she goes. A Chicago native and a Denverite by choice, her goal is to visit all 50 states and at least 50 countries by 50 and make a bit of a dent in the ever-growing bucket list. A strong proponent of the idea that only experiences can make you richer, travel is the best education you can give yourself.
She has bylines across the web from Thrillist and the Huffington Post to Eater and the Food Network. You can follow her exploits on http://thedownlo.com or on Instagram @lmonitz.