Local Talent in a World-Famous Park

Local Talent in a World-Famous Park

Yosemite Conservancy bookstores feature many items from local artists and authors, including children's books, calendars, coloring books and screen-printed hats.

Yosemite inspires people in countless different ways. In our bookstores, you'll find stories and artwork inspired by the park — and, in many cases, created by climbers, naturalists and rangers (and Conservancy staff!) who have lived, worked and played there for years.

The items highlighted below are all the work of Yosemite locals — some past, some present, all deeply familiar with the park. Shop "local" to see Yosemite through their eyes ... and remember, proceeds support work in the park!


Glen Denny arrived in Yosemite in September 1958. Driving through the Valley on his first day in the park, he saw a crowd gazing up at the 3,000-foot face of El Capitan. He looked up, too, and saw them -- tiny dots slowly working their way up the Nose, the far-away figures of Warren Harding, Wayne Merry and George Whitmore on their way to becoming the first climbers to reach the top of what was thought to be an unclimbable wall.

That was day one. In Valley Walls: A Memoir of Climbing & Living in Yosemite, Glen chronicles life in and above Camp 4, the walk-in campground where countless climbers have found a seasonal home over the years. He carried his camera up and down the Valley's cliffs, capturing first ascents, snowstorms and slow summer days. Glen's photographs and essays might be printed in black and white, but they offer a colorful look at climbing's Golden Age. 


Jenni Buczko grew up around Yosemite, worked there as a ranger, and can often be found climbing the park's rock walls.

After discovering silk painting through one of our art workshops in the Valley, she began making her own creations. Today, she's an accomplished artist, known for capturing Yosemite's magic in vibrant hues. Send some of that magic to your family and friends this season with her Yosemite in Color notecards!



Photographer Nancy Robbins lives in Yosemite year-round. Writer David Mas Masumoto lives just outside the park, on his family's organic fruit farm.

Their talents combine in A Sense of Yosemite, a beautiful and poignant journey through the park in their proverbial backyards. Her photos and his essays offer an intimate, local perspective on a world-famous place.



Born and raised in the Yosemite area, Allison Baggett knows the park - and its plant and animal residents - better than most. When she's not working as a naturalist guide for our Outdoor Adventures, Allison taps into her knowledge of the natural world to create original drawings for screen printing.

This Sierra Nevada red fox hat features her sketch of a rare mammal at the center of a research project supported by our donors. (If you like this look, be sure to check our pika hat!)


Hanna Hedstrom heads to Yosemite each summer to work as a seasonal wilderness ranger in the high country, and spends the rest of the year as a freelance artist in New Mexico.

She's combined her passions in a new creation designed to get other people excited about art and the park: a Yosemite coloring book. Grab your crayons, colored pencils or markers and bring familiar scenes to life. Stick within the lines and usual Sierra color scheme, or create a whimsical new view (purple sequoias, anyone?) - it's up to you.



Rachel Mazur, bear expert and Yosemite's branch chief of wildlife, knows more than most of us about the fascinating lives of the park's non-human residents. And she wrote an award-winning children's book about it! 

If You Were a Bear invites young readers to explore the lives of Yosemite's beloved black bears - and how we can all help keep them wild. (And speaking of bears, Rachel also wrote a book called ... Speaking of Bears. That one's better suited for adult readers - take a look on Google Books.)



Another ranger with a penchant for prose (and poetry): Shelton Johnson. Shelton is well known for shedding light on the story of Buffalo Soldiers, the African Americans who served as early park rangers. His 2010 novel Gloryland traces the tale of a sharecropper's son from South Carolina to serve with the U.S. Cavalry in Yosemite in the early 1900s.

Shelton brings an important chapter of our history to life on the page AND on stage: See him in "Yosemite Through the Eyes of a Buffalo Soldier" at the Yosemite Theater next spring!



When he's not leading one of our Outdoor Adventures (which he's been doing for nearly 40 years), you might find Michael Elsohn Ross at his home in El Portal, working on a rough draft for a new book. He's written more than 35 so far!

Michael uses his stories to share his curiosity about science and nature with children. Head to our bookstore to pick up Yosemite Trivia or Baby Bear isn't Hungry, and visit his website (bugauthor.com) to check out a full list of his books.

Not everyone can live or work in Yosemite ... but we make it easy for you to connect with the park, even from a distance. Grab a Yosemite-focused field guide to nurture your inner naturalist. Pick up a hand-crafted, life-size sequoia cone paperweight to serve as a year-round reminder of the park's thousand-year-old trees. Wear your Yosemite shirt and pika hat with pride, whether you're hiking to Clouds Rest or strolling city streets.

This is just a small sample of the books and gifts we carry. Head to our online bookstore or visit us in the park to find even more ways to support Yosemite while you shop! 

Yosemite Insider