Unlikely Hikers

Change your feed, change your life! Connect with other Unlikely Hikers on Instagram: @unlikelyhikers. Use the hashtags #unlikelyhiker or #unlikelyhikers.

What is an Unlikely Hiker?

Unlikely Hiker encompasses anyone who doesn’t fit the standard image of the “outdoorsperson.” Bigger body types, people of color, queer, trans, gender nonconforming folks, differently-abled people and so on. The people you don’t see in outdoorsy media. Honestly, I don’t even want to qualify it to death. Maybe, you are someone who has overcome tremendous odds to find healing in the outdoors. We all have a story. If you see yourself as an Unlikely Hiker, then you are. Welcome.

It’s ironic, tongue-in-cheek, reclamatory. There is nothing unlikely about wanting to enjoy and explore nature, it’s one of the most natural things any of us can want to do. Yes, the outdoors and public lands belong to all of us and sure, no one is getting a handwritten invitation to our National Parks and trailheads, but exclusion isn’t always verbal. A lot of the time, it’s about representation. Representation matters! Who is being targeted for outdoor recreation? Who has a seemingly natural sense of access?

I was so tired of seeing the same kind of person on seemingly every social media based outdoors community. White, thin, “fit” and straight-looking. Often, moneyed (read: top of the line gear). Often, a man. The typical woman featured fits an even narrower set of guidelines. That isn’t a knock at anyone who fits that, but it’s a reality that leaves the rest of us noticeably out of place. (I write a lot more about this in Community, Intersectionality and Every Feeling I’ve Ever Felt.)

Unlikely Hikers on Instagram

The @unlikelyhikers Instagram is a frequently updated, thriving community. The #UnlikelyHiker(s) hashtags have been used over 10,000 times! Here are some fantastic samples: