National parks are for everyone. But barriers to outdoor access can be compounded for members of the LGBTQ+ community and other marginalized communities. Queers in the Wilderness is working to overcome these barriers while giving back to national parks.
Eastern Sierra Conservation Corps’ (ESCC) Queers in the Wilderness hosted an immersive backpacking trip to build outdoors skills and empower participants as stewards of public lands. After being trained on backpacking skills like navigation and packing, the group hiked for eight days, covering 40 miles in Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Parks last August. Along the way, they also completed volunteer trail restoration work alongside trained trail crews. In total, they helped restore three miles of trails and 12 campgrounds.
Queers in the Wilderness hopes to host the trip again and continue to foster a welcoming space in the outdoors.
This trip was supported by the National Park Foundation through its ParkVentures program.