Mary Kathryn Johnson Named Grand Prize Winner of Travel Photography Contest

The Grand Prize Winner of the Caleb and Linda Pirtle Travel Photography Contest is Mary Kathryn Johnson.

She captured the chill of winter.

She captured the beauty of winter.

The mountains around her were grand.

The ski slopes were beckoning.

Yosemite rose up in all of its grandeur and glory.

But her photograph lets us know that, so often, the wonders of travel may be only a snowfall away.

Of her prize-winning photograph, Mary Kathryn writes:

“Three days of snow-shoe hiking and skiing alongside icons recognized the world over left our family tired, yet invigorated.

During many a winter, we have practiced our cross-country and downhill skiing with the help of the oldest ski school in California at Badger Pass in Yosemite National Park.

“The majesty of Yosemite Valley was beautifully presented as we awoke on our departure day in December 2006 to a fresh dusting of snow.

“Driving the familiar road home from our yearly pilgrimage to this awe-inspiring natural cathedral, this untouched meadow at the base of El Capitan beckoned our inexhaustible sons, Riley, age five, and Evan, age eight, to participate once more in the magic of Yosemite.

“Mom and Dad did not argue when we heard their pleading for the unplanned stop, as we wished to delay the stiffness that awaited us at the conclusion of the four-hour drive home.

“The echo of youth resonating off the world’s largest, ancient, single piece of granite that is El Capitan gave me the feeling, as I framed this shot, that the trees wished to defy the stillness of winter and join in the merriment.

“So, I ask you, ‘Who is chasing whom?’”

THE BLUE RIBBON WINNER OF THE TRAVEL PHOTOGRAPHY CONTEST WILL BE ANNOUNCED ON TUESDAY.

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