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Know the West

The new top ways to go outdoors

If you’re getting out into nature, do right by the land and each other.

 

The new top ways to go outside

  1. Wear comfortable shoes, and be ready to experience discomfort in your personal growth.

  2. Pack your daypack with essentials, AND it’s essential to unpack your invisible backpack of privilege.

  3. Sunscreen is important to reflect harmful UV rays. It’s also important for you to reflect on how normatively white (like the color of your sunscreen) the outdoors can be.

  4. Pack it in and pack it out; call it in before you call it out. (“Hey, have you considered how your cognitive biases overlaid with structural oppression and sociocultural lens may be affecting how you’re viewing this scenario?”)

  5. Protect fragile ecosystems (love for cryptobiotic soil!), and ease off on protecting the fragility that surrounds your structurally privileged identity. 

  6. Water – you’re going to need it. You also need to get involved in building systems of liberation rather than perpetuating systems of oppression.

  7. A first aid kit is vital for treating physical trauma. How about treating the generational trauma of historical exclusion and structural inequities?

  8. Leave No Trace. Actually, practice “Relationship to Place” in ways that challenge binary myopic colonial frames of our relationship to the land.

  9. Love. Laugh. LandBack!


José G. González is a Chicano educator, environmental education advisor, outdoor enthusiast and science communicator with a passion for outdoor equity. He is the founder of Latino Outdoors and co-founder of the Outdoorist Oath, and he resides in Sacramento, California.

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