Episode 67: Fat and Outdoorsy – Jenny Bruso

Episode 67: Fat and Outdoorsy

Jenny Bruso

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Banner image by Paulina Dao

Jenny Bruso is the founder of Unlikely Hikers. Her work is rooted in her belief that there is room for every body on the trail. Jenny is queer, fat, and femme, and she’s passionate about cultivating a safe space in the outdoors for people of all backgrounds and body sizes.

Unlikely Hikers is just two years old, but its positive reception proves that the time is right for outdoor media and meetups that include rather than exclude, and encourage people to occupy their bodies rather than critique them. We talk with Jenny about Unlikely Hikers’ growth, how straight-sized people can be considerate of others while in the outdoors, where she finds her hiking apparel, and more.

In this episode, you’ll hear:

– Why Jenny Bruso started Unlikely Hikers and what it means to be one
– How her time on the trail equates to self care
– How Unlikely Hikers group hikes intentionally cultivate a safe space for all people (including queer, trans, people of color, fat, disabled, etc.)
– Why Jenny’s ground rules for hikes include not talking about weight or dieting
– The assumptions straight-sized people make about fat people on the trail (and how to avoid making them)
– Why representation of marginalized communities in the outdoor industry won’t change unless those communities are included when decisions are being made
– The lack of options available for plus sized athletic clothing (and who is doing a good job)

Find the episode below, on Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, GooglePlay, or wherever you stream podcasts. Listen to our 2019 catchup interview with Jenny Bruso here.


Jenny Bruso (learn more at JennyBruso.com); Hosted by Gale Straub; Featured in the midroll: Kaily Gashi, adventurous mother of twin toddlers.

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Music by Feverkin

Music is also by Lee Rosevere and Evan Schaeffer via freemusicarchive.org.

CC by A

Jenny & Unlikely Hikers

Unlikely Hikers Group Hike: Joaquin Miller Park; Photo by Robyn Navarro

Jenny at Mosier Creek Falls, photo by Brie Jones

Links/Resources Mentioned in this Episode:

Jenny Bruso: Website; Unlikely Hikers: Instagram & Facebook

Donate to Jenny Bruso

Huffington Post article on Unlikely Hikers

Unruly Bodies Essays

Outside Online: “I don’t hike to lose weight, I hike because I love it

Diversity Outdoors

SHIFT Conference

Melanin Basecamp

Brown People Camping

Brothers of Climbing

Flash Foxy


Kaily Gashi: Instagram

She Explores Facebook Group



  1. […] Hikers. Jenny is featured in Outside online, Outdoor Project, Diversify Outdoors, and in the She Explores podcast. Note: Jenny is someone we tried to set up a page for before but was denied. You may find be able […]

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