About Us

Information on the owners of Yellowstone Hiking Guides.

The Mahans


Yellowstone Hiking Guides owners/operators, Josh and Emily Jo Mahan, are Yellowstone locals who know the lay of the land as few others do. They are also professional international guides. They have led tours in Chile, Micronesia, and Costa Rica, as well as extensively in Yellowstone. They know how to cater to a traveler’s needs.


Josh Mahan

Josh Mahan

Josh first hiked Yellowstone in 1989, a week-long trek. He has guided in Denali National Park, Glacier National Park, Olympic National Park, Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and the Grand Tetons. For the past decade he has guided hikes in Yellowstone. He is also an author and journalist. His most recent book is a hiking guide of western Montana titled Best Hikes Near Missoula, published by Falcon Guides.


Emily Jo Mahan

Emily Jo Mahan

Emily Jo is from Texas. Her first passion is scuba diving. Her enthusiasm in exploring the natural world is contagious. She has swam with sharks in Colombia, penetrated sunken ships in Truk Lagoon, and taught the world how to dive in Costa Rica. Under Emily Jo’s watchful eye you will smell the wild roses as you never have before.


Josh holds a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism with a Minor in Environmental Studies from the University of Montana. Emily Jo holds a Bachelor of Science in Journalism and Broadcasting from Oklahoma State University. Josh is a Wilderness First Responder and Swiftwater Rescue technician. Emily Jo is an Emergency First Response instructor.


Owners Josh and Emily Jo Mahan

Photos by: Josh & Emily Jo Mahan


Ralph Mahan at the Ventura Pier in California. Photo by: Josh Mahan

Ralph Mahan at the Ventura Pier in California. Photo by: Josh Mahan

Ralph Mahan founded Yellowstone Hiking Guides in 2014 with Josh and Emily Jo. His passion for the outdoors was contagious. One of his most fond memories was hiking with Josh in 1979 in Grand Teton National Park when more than 200 elk stampeded in front of them on the trail. He described the moment as an unforgettable thundering, shaking the ground beneath his feet. Ralph loved everything about Jackson; hunting, fishing, friends, etc. He spent his retirement in Camarillo, California hanging out with family and friends next to the Channel Islands National Park.