The Unlikely Hiker

Jenny Bruso is Making Space for Those Who Feel Shut Out of the Outdoors


Wow, this is a really dumb story. I'm a 46 year old Mexican-American male and I've been hiking since my late teens. I started hiking because I wanted to, not because I was making some political statement. I never felt any barriers to enjoying the outdoors because I really don't care what people think of me out there.

In fact, I tend to avoid crowds of people while out in nature. I don't care who you are, I probably don't want to hike with you. I don't know why EVERYTHING is identity politics nowadays, or how there's always someone else to blame for you not doing something.

And "thousands of dollars on gear"? Who in the hell is spending that much to go on a frikin hike??

The people in this article sound like real buzzkills and it would probably be a living hell to hike with them. UGH.
I agree with the two comments above. I think its ridiculous to claim that anyone is a marginalized victim of "hiking discrimination" in a country with an amazing system of public parks and open hiking trails. Of course, there are those who struggle with financial, transportation or child care challenges. However, there is no justification for blaming people who love experiencing the beauty and healing power of Mother Nature. Perhaps the next hiking article should focus on motivating people who spend their time in front of the TV, on social media or writing inflammatory articles. :)
I mean my hiking "gear" is almost all second hand/sale/not fancy and it's fine? Yes, some people you see on trails look like they just walked out of REI. Good for them! It must be nice. It also doesn't affect me.

Also, I've never known anyone that went out and bought everything all at once. That's ridiculous. You get things one at time as you can afford or need. For example, that 20% member coupon action which only comes but once a year.
It is unbelievable that this is published. Wonderful that the author is getting people outdoors and encouraging fitness and the enjoyment of nature... however, comments related to "crushing miles" being "settler colonialist bullshit" and some idea that our public trail systems are geared toward specific citizens, is nonsense and totally insults the many many people who share trails and support each other to reach their goals. Next time you hear someone say "you're almost there" realize that they just said that to 20 other people ahead of you and they are seeking and supporting a community, where they encourage those around them, regardless of their race, size or socioeconomic background. It seems like the author is missing this fact about the humans that currently engage in the outdoors. I'm sorry no one told the author how to prepare for a walk in the woods on a sunny day. That's rough. If only we had some resources at our disposal, perhaps right in the palm of our hands, to help our millennials understand maybe what to expect whilst hiking a trail that approximately 500,000 people hike each year... that would be super helpful. (pro-tip, you really just need shoes and water!) Instead of writing about helping to get folks outside, which she is actually doing, in this article she instead focused on some off-base systemic blame for gearing hiking only to certain people, which is sad. You're almost there!