Meet our #NobleBabe Evelynn Escobar, founder of LA based intersectional women’s hike club 'Hike Clerb', social media consultant, activist and soon-to-be Mom.
Tell us where your love of the outdoors began: My love for the outdoors really began as a child. I grew up playing outside in the woods with my friends like most kids but it was my first trip to Los Angeles at 10 years old to visit my aunt that really planted the seed for my life today. On that trip I completed my first “hike” and would make that a focal point for future visits and now, life to come! Even though I didn’t necessarily grow up camping and hiking where I grew up in Northern Virginia, it was that early exposure through travel that really helped me shape my connection with the outdoors.
What was the turning point for you that led you to start Hike Clerb? My first National Park trip really did it for me. I went on a road trip to visit my first National Parks, the Grand Canyon and Zion, and it was there that I realized how homogenous these spaces are. It took me by surprise because I always thought that these popular destinations would reflect the world that we live in, but to my disappointment they did not. There were definitely instances during that trip where I felt othered on the trails and it inspired me to create a safe space to bring Black, Indigenous, women of color together to collectively heal in nature.
What advice would you give to inspire people of color who are apprehensive about getting outside regularly? I would tell them that they deserve to take up space just like anyone else. We have an inherent connection to the land that dates back to our ancestors. Just because we’ve historically been gate kept out of these places or our land taken by violence and force, does not mean that this is actually the natural way things should exist.
Top 3 dream hikes you’d love to experience one day: I would love to summit Mt. Kilimanjaro, hike Machu Picchu and hike around South Africa one day!
You’re a soon to be mom! What are you looking forward to the most as you approach motherhood? I think what I’m most excited for is the opportunity to learn and grow in conjunction with our new little person. Motherhood with them in the womb has already taught me so much. It has been such a crash course in reparenting and healing myself and tending to my inner child. I’m just so excited to be able to be the emotionally responsible parent they need and to learn from them!
With all the work you've done surrounding Hike Clerb, what hopes do you have for your soon-to-be babe’s relationship with the outdoors? Well, the beautiful thing is they have already cemented that relationship with the outdoors in the womb! They’ve visited more National Parks (four to be exact) there than I did the first 23 years of my life. I’ve spent many days hiking, camping, glamping -- you name it, while growing this little one. I know that once they’ve transitioned earthside a life of adventure and a solid connection to the natural world around them will be seamless.
How do you make time for you throughout your busy schedule of freelance, activism & your beloved non for profit? The beautiful thing is, that all my worlds truly intersect. Whether it’s creating as a freelancer, building Hike Clerb and acting in accordance for the greater good, it is all working in tandem. I will say, pregnancy has definitely made me rethink the way that I make myself available to work etc. because I definitely do not feel I have a solid footing when it comes to balancing it all. It’s always a work in progress, but centering my purpose and my unique contributions to people and the planet in the work that I do makes it easy for it to all flow effortlessly.
Follow Evelynn here at @evemeetswest