Native Coloradan Pete McBride has spent two decades studying the world with a camera. A self-taught photographer, filmmaker, writer, and public speaker, he is a Sony Artisan of Imagery and has traveled on assignment to over 75 countries for the National Geographic Society, Smithsonian, Google, and The Nature Conservancy. He has also spoken on stages for TEDx, The World Economic Forum, USAID, the Nat Geo Live speaker series, and others.
After a decade documenting remote expeditions from Everest to Antarctica, McBride decided to focus his cameras closer to home on a subject closer to his heart—his backyard river, the Colorado River. Four years and 1,500 river-miles later, McBride produced an acclaimed book, three award-winning documentaries, and co-hosted a PBS TV program. Other watersheds soon called, including a source-to-sea look at India’s sacred Ganges River. Upon completing the journey, The National Geographic Society named McBride a “Freshwater Hero.”
His latest project replaced rafting with walking—a lot of it. Over the course of a year, McBride hiked the entire length of Grand Canyon National Park — over 750 miles without a trail — to highlight development challenges facing this iconic landscape. After completing the journey, National Geographic named him and his hiking companion, writer Kevin Fedarko, “Adventurers of the Year.” McBride has since released a Rizzoli book, “Grand Canyon; Between River and Rim” that won a National Outdoor Book Award. He accompanied the book with a feature-length documentary, Into the Canyon, for National Geographic Channel, which won Best Feature at the Banff Mountain Film Festival, among others.
McBride resides in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado.
Guest Moderator Matthew Nelson is the Executive Director of the Arizona Trail Association and has worked as an outdoor educator, Grand Canyon backpacking guide, archaeologist, Native American repatriation coordinator, editor, and freelance photojournalist with more than 500 published articles to his credit. He has visited the summits of America’s highest peaks and spent three winters removing trash from Cerro Aconcagua (22,841 ft.) in Argentina.