The Wild Wanderer Spotlight Series highlights the stories of queer adventurers in their own words. We hope that by sharing these underrepresented voices, true diversity and inclusion will begin to make their way into the mainstream.
Wild Wanderer Spotlight: Bridget
“I think the outdoor industry could provide more role models of stewardship for everyone, particularly LGBTQ+ people. Our public lands need protection, and amplifying all voices is critical. Role models could provide the queer community with inspiration, education, and a way to see themselves as part of the outdoor community protecting the spaces we share.” – Bridget
What are your pronouns?
How do you identify?
What outdoor activities are you involved in?
Most of the time I can be found hiking/backpacking in the Adirondacks. I usually have my camera with me and enjoy landscape photography. I also enjoy cycling and have started mountain biking. In the winter I continue to hike on snowshoes, and get some time in cross country and downhill skiing. I really enjoy traveling to new places to backpack/hike, and am looking forward to a day when we can do so again.
Tell us about a favorite/memorable outdoor adventure you’ve had:
There have been a lot of good adventures! I really enjoyed the day my partner an I finished our 46 High Peaks. We started the day with a sunrise from a summit, which is one of my favorite types of hikes. We summited 4 high peaks that day were surrounded by friends that had hiked with us previously. It was a really fun, rewarding day and marked the end of a great challenge.
In your opinion, what are the most important challenges/issues facing queer people outside?
There are a few challenges for queer people outdoors. I think getting started can be intimidating. The outdoor community can be judgmental, especially on beginners. This can discourage queer people from asking questions and getting essential knowledge needed for getting started in the outdoors. This can lead to a lack of education. With fewer prominent role models for queer people in the outdoors, it’s difficult to find a community and mentorship. Lastly, safety is a big concern for many. When traveling to a new place, it can be impossible to assess how queer friendly it is going to be. For those that are new to recreating outdoors, the fear of not only the unknown outdoor elements but the fellow recreationalists and the inhabitants of nearby towns can be a huge barrier. On adventures to new places, gas stations or stores in small rural towns can be uncomfortable. In the backcountry, this fear can be amplified, with no one around for miles there is less of a sense of security and more wariness of other people. As someone who is comfortable in the woods, this nervousness can be bearable, especially when with a supportive community. For queers who are new to the outdoors if can be insurmountable.
As an LGBTQIA+ person, if you could change one thing about the outdoor industry, what would it be?
I think the outdoor industry could provide more role models of stewardship for everyone, particularly LGBTQ+ people. Our public lands need protection, and amplifying all voices is critical. Role models could provide the queer community with inspiration, education, and a way to see themselves as part of the outdoor community protecting the spaces we share.
Do you have anything else to add?
I always enjoy connecting with other LGBTQ+ individuals in the outdoor community!
Connect with Bridget
Follow Bridget on Instagram.
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