National Geographic Emerging Explorer Jimmy Chin is one of the most sought-after expedition photographers working today. Hear about his challenges photographing a climber’s paradise: Yosemite National Park.
Jimmy Chin is a world-class climber and an ace behind the
lens—a combination of skills that has propelled him around the world to
capture images of the remote and extreme.
Chin was born in
Minnesota in 1973. His attraction to the climbing lifestyle began when
he was an undergraduate studying Asian studies at Carleton College in
During breaks he and his buddies would pile into the
car and head for famed crags in places like California's Joshua Tree
National Park. The freedom of the open road combined with the mental and
physical challenges of the climbing "got me totally hooked," he says.
college Chin moved to Jackson, Wyoming, where he patched together a
living from a string of odd jobs as he skied, climbed, and traveled the
world. Four and a half years ago, he picked up a camera to document his
After returning from a trip to Pakistan, Chin sold a
few of his photos and realized he had a career. "I didn't make a lot,
but at the time I thought it was a ton of money," he says. "Obviously, I
enjoyed my lifestyle, and I really enjoyed shooting too. It was a
Today Chin's portfolio and climbing skill regularly land him gigs with the likes of National Geographic magazine and National Geographic Adventure, the North Face outdoor equipment company, Climbing magazine, Outside magazine, and Men's Journal.
Two waterfalls, Yosemite National Park, central California, U.S. Formed by creeks tumbling into the Yosemite River valley, the upper falls drop 1,430 ft (436 m) and the lower, 320 ft (98 m). With the cascades between, the total drop from the crest of the upper to the base of the lower is 2,425 ft (739 m), one of the world's longest cataracts.
National preserve, central California, U.S. Made a national park in 1890, it encompasses 761,320 ac (308,106 ha) in the Sierra Nevada range. Its many features include giant redwood groves with trees thousands of years old, Yosemite Falls, Bridalveil Fall (620 ft [189 m]), and huge domes and peaks; the greatest of these is El Capitan, a granite buttress that is 3,604 ft (1,098 m) high.