Episode 108: The Curvy Kili Crew

Sponsored by Merrell, ThirdLove, and GreenerWays Organic

Banner image by Allison Fleece

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For International Women’s Day, 20 plus-size women hiked Mount Kilimanjaro with WHOA Travel. They called themselves the Curvy Kili Crew. Each had a different reason and background, but they came together to take up space on the highest mountain in Africa. One goal? To normalize fat hiking around the world.

Diandra Oliver brought along a recorder to the mountain to share the seven-day trek with us.  She’s also working on a memoir about the experience.

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Featured in this episode: Diandra Oliver, Autumn Stofflet, Eve, Sharon ‘Shazz’ Nderitu, and Deb Malkin

Hosted by Gale Straub

Music is by Lee Rosevere, Kai Engel, and Josh Woodward using CC by A license. 

In this episode, you’ll hear:

  • Why Diandra Oliver wanted to climb Mount Kilimanjaro
  • How the stakes feel higher when society’s expectations don’t align with your own
  • Why reaching the summit was the main goal but why we might want to re-think summit culture
  • The challenges of finding gear
  • The shared experiences and bonding found in group activities (and it was typically harder for Diandra)
  • The biodiversity of Mount Kilimanjaro
  • Sounds and stories from the trail
  • What acclimatization feels like
  • Why self-care is important
  • How standing on the top of the mountain felt
  • Why sometimes a sign is not a summit

Resources mentioned in this episode:

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The Curvy Kili Crew

The whole group and crew; photo by Allison Fleece – WHOA Travel
Selfie on the trail – Diandra Oliver
Day one; photo by Allison Fleece, WHOA Travel
Diandra and Shazz (on the right)
Day 5; photo by Allison Fleece, WHOA Travel
At Kibo Hut; photo by Allison Fleece, WHOA Travel

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