Almost five years ago, Luz Lituma and Adriana Garcia were hiking in the southeastern United States when they noticed a lack of representation on the trails. This sparked a simple idea: create a grassroots initiative dedicated to breaking down barriers and making Latinos and disengaged communities feel comfortable outdoors.
“I think there’s a huge barrier to entry when it comes to hiking, whether it’s knowledge, cost, or, you know, access to trails,” says Lituma, now co-founder of Latinxhikers. The group works with other organizations to make their events inexpensive or free, adds co-founder Garcia. After that, Latinxhikers make sure new members feel welcome, comfortable, and part of the group.
Also, there are no prerequisites to join. You don’t need to be in good physical shape or have hiking experience. “We really focus on the beginner trails,” says Garcia, “making sure they’re under a certain mileage and elevation. So when people go out [to our events] they are able to have a good time. It’s not like, ‘Oh my God, that was so hard. I can’t do this anymore.
Latinxhikers connect over family, food, and culture, among other things. “It became my life, basically,” Lituma says. “It means so much more than a band.”
Watch the video above, in partnership with the 2022 Toyota Tundra, to learn more and get involved.
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