Welcome to the self-proclaimed official Yosemite Beardown Webpages. The Beardown tradition began in 1976. Seems like a number of the current and past participants worked for CompuTax back in those lazy, hazy days of mid-1970s. Remember when computers filled a closet for 8Mb of RAM; the guys who developed TurboTax were just finishing kindergarten; and Bill Gates was a hormone-crazed teenager. Some things never change though. People back then did as they do now; they waited until the last minute to file their taxes. Consequently, those who work in the tax-preparing industry are busy as beavers until April 15th, but become excess baggage immediately thereafter. The Beardown founders were no exception. On the 16th of April, they were laid-off and cast out like an old shirt. Not ones to let a little adversity get in the way of a good time, as a celebration of their lay-off status and impending collection of unemployment compensation (remember how cheap it was to live in those days?), the founding fathers headed up to Yosemite Valley to contemplate life, plot their new direction, and most importantly, party! Hence, a tradition was born. The Beardown has been held on the weekend after April 15th every year thereafter. The only exceptions have been on occasional years when the 15th fell ON the weekend.

My first year was 1980. Since then, I've made it far more years than not. Cathy and I even got married during Beardown weekend in 1994. Many people have come and gone. Some were regulars for awhile. A core dozen or two have faithfully maintained the tradition despite the comings and goings of so many more. We've sadly lost a few along the line also. As we become old and crotchety, the Beardown's passing into time itself is likewise inevitable, but for now at least, I'm attempting to memorialize and chronicle its existence via these webpages.

For those of you out there who would like to contribute media, I encourage you to do so. You can mail me your old negatives for scanning, or preferably scan them yourself and transmit them electronically. Make sure you tell me what year they're from. deanoid.net has FTP access, so if you want to do a bulk transfer, use FTP. I can give you FTP instructions. If you want any of the images posted on here in high-res, e-mail me a request. The images contained herein are about 680 x 436 @ 72 dpi...not that large. I have scanned the images at 300 dpi, so the originals are much higher resolution and show more detail. They're also around 1636 x 1062...over twice as large. I took film photos from 1980 through 1990. From 1991 through 1999, I shot video tape exclusively. Images from that time frame will be pretty nasty, as they're videocaptures, whenever I get around to capturing them. Starting in 2000, I began usiing a digital camera, so the images improve.

As of May 13, 2006, I put a bulletin board and forum here so you can post messages or slander your fellow beardowners. Feel free to (ab)use it. I also added a roster of known beardowners, past and present. If you can update it, we'll all appreciate it. The roster section is password protected to prevent incursions by spiders and spammers. If you need the password, e-mail me.

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Latest Update:

09 JAN 2014

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Web page design and all images contained herein, except where indicated otherwise, are © 1980 - 2014 Dean R. Charles and are the exclusive property of the author/photographer. Limited license is granted to download these images for personal use, or to use these images on a non-commercial basis. Any other use is prohibited without express written permission of the owner. Violators will be fed to the bears.