Her byline comes across the Google Alerts here at The WON because she writes about the outdoors. Shauna Stephenson, outdoor editor for a newspaper in Wyoming, devotes herself to telling about outdoor experiences with a personal touch, and she also harbors a devotion to scrupulous research — whether it’s tracking bears with a state agency or talking to folks about the pine beetle problem. We’re hoping there are a lot more Shauna gals out there coming up in the next generation, willing to search out stories that make us think or that just plain motivate us to go outdoors.
I am the outdoor editor for the Wyoming Tribune Eagle in Cheyenne. For my money, there’s no better job than that of an outdoor writer. I’ve been in the news business since I was 16 years old, working my way up from humble beginnings in a chemical laden window-less room, cataloging molding negative sleeves for the hometown newspaper to hiking, hunting, and fishing in the wilds of Wyoming for a paycheck.
I still pinch myself some mornings.
At the time, I begged for that first job, nagging the local editor until, in an effort to stop my daily phone calls, he hired me on. I have always had a soft spot for story-telling and telling the stories of the outdoors is no different. After obtaining a journalism degree from Iowa State University, I moved to Wyoming and as they say, the rest is history. The West has always been my home, whether I knew it or not.
After a short stint as a daily reporter and photographer, I moved over to the outdoors desk. I have been able to expand the scope of outdoor reporting, moving from the typical “go here, do this” story to covering the bigger picture. I strive to give each story the bigger picture, bringing conservation, ecology, geology, and hopefully some introspection or humor to each piece.
Since then I have expanded into the freelance world, writing and photographing for publications such as Women’s Adventure, Rocky Mountain Magazine and Grey’s Sporting Journal.
I have met amazing people and seen amazing things. I have seen a moon so bright it was like the sun, felt the tug of the river’s wildest trout and been so close to a grizzly I could count her whiskers. It is, quite simply, the most humbling and fulfilling job I have ever had.
I love to experience the outdoors face-to-face. To boil it down to single recreational activities is difficult. Yes, I love to hunt and fish, camp and hike. But it is the process of discovery that intrigues me – to know a mountain range and a single mountain intimately. I love the highs and lows the natural world dishes out – the adrenaline of a hunt, the buzz of a big fish against the zen of an afternoon spent glassing or peacefulness of a campfire. It’s a yin and yang that fits my personality so well.
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