#WhyCV Photographer Spotlight: John Flaherty

John and Sharrie are able to do what they enjoy most: get outside, take pictures, and hike

Each month in 2020 we shine a spotlight on a local photographer and examine the beauty of our valley through their eyes. This month, we are lucky enough to get a peek into the Topaz Lake area with retired family-man John Flaherty. 

John began working at the age of 16 when he was first hired at Safeway in San Francisco. Little did he know the effect this choice would have on the rest of his life. In college, he moved to the meat department, kickstarting his 35-year career in the meat business. Not only did he ‘meat’ his wife Sharrie while working at Safeway, but his work also brought them to the beautiful Carson Valley area, where they still live, near their four children and six grandchildren.

After leaving the grocery business, John worked four seasons at Topaz Lake Park, shooting photos the whole time. Now that he’s officially retired, he and Sharrie are able to do what they enjoy most: get outside, take pictures, and hike. In fact, John has hiked the hill behind their home at least 200 times a year for the last 23 years. Says John “that’s like hiking to New York and back to the Mississippi just on my hill. Good exercise!” Lucky for us, it’s also where he takes about 75% of his photos. 

Over the last 30 years, John has been featured on local news hundreds of times, both print and TV. He’s never taken money for his photos, and has, in fact, made many donations to fundraisers. 

Scroll down for a taste of why John loves Carson Valley, and check out more photos on his social media.

John, Sharrie, and cat Littlemax in their yard.
wildflower blooms topaz lake nv john flaherty
Spring wildflowers
wildflower blooms topaz lake nv john flaherty
Spring wildflowers
Inversion layer over Topaz Lake john flaherty
Inversion layer over Topaz Lake
sheep grazing topaz lake john flaherty
Sheep grazing the hillside around Topaz Lake
moonrise topaz lake nv john flaherty
This hawk photobombed the moonrise over Topaz
sunset jobs peak john flaherty
Sunset over Jobs Peak
topaz lake nv winter johnflaherty
Topaz Lake in winter
topaz lake winter john flaherty
Ice at Topaz Lake

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