Maia Dery grew up in Durham, NC, where she began bicycling, hiking, canoeing, and photographing the many parks and preserves in the Triangle area. She graduated from UNC Chapel Hill in 1988 as an English major and worked for eight years at Townsend, Bertram & Company, the area’s premier outfitter.
While at UNC, Maia and a friend went backpacking in Linville Gorge Wilderness Area. Maia was climbing over a fallen tree when it began to rain. Rather than feeling disappointed, Maia accepted and enjoyed her predicament, and got hooked on backpacking. After several years of scrawling directions and maps on envelopes and whatever else she could find in her pack, Maia decided that the Triangle, with all its great outdoor opportunities, was missing a complete guide to the places she had come to know. Her first book, Adventure Guide to the Triangle, doesn’t predict the weather, but it can show readers the way to new experiences in the Triangle’s outdoors.
After college, Maia began her second professional journey: photography. After running a small wedding-and-portraits business, she began to concentrate on gallery work in 2001. Her subjects are the landscapes she admires so keenly and closely. Her adventures, either to search for subjects or to hike for hiking’s sake, have provided her with second-nature knowledge of the Triangle’s trails and outdoor resources.
Maia earned a master’s in liberal studies from Duke University in 1996. Since 2001, she has been a lecturer in photography at Guilford College in Greensboro. She lives in Efland, NC.