Inspiration | February 2024

Celebrating Black History: 11 Outdoor Organizations, Athletes, and Culture Shifters to Follow

Support And Follow These Outdoor Organizations, Businesses, Athletes, And Culture Shifters

In case you didn’t get the memo, February is Black History Month. To celebrate, we’re sharing a quick list of eleven Black-owned brands, diversity-driven outdoor organizations, and trail-blazing athletes and activists. 

First and foremost, we recommend you consider voting with your dollars and supporting these entities and individuals with donations and patronage. See a non-profit below that’s tackling an issue that’s close to your heart? Donate or grab some merch. Vibe with a creator or athlete? Hit those links in their bio and support their adventures. 

That said, if you aren’t in a position to contribute monetarily at the moment, a simple follow can be a great place to start, so we’ve also linked relevant social media handles below. A social media follow might be as quick as a click for you, but it helps creators, companies, and communities alike amplify their reach and ability to convert social capital to concrete income and impact. Plus, adding more diverse voices to your feed will help you learn and grow as an ally.

Long story short? Read up, hit follow, and don’t forget to support!

7 Outdoor Companies & Communities To Support & Follow This Black History Month And Beyond

Soul Trak Outdoors

Our nation is extraordinarily diverse. Our national parks? Less so. Soul Trak Outdoors, a DC-based non-profit, seeks to change that by introducing communities of color to the great outdoors. Soul Trak doesn’t stop there, either. The organization uses fun outdoor activities like hiking and biking as teaching moments to impart knowledge on everything from environmental science to outdoor advocacy. 

Take Action:

Outdoor Afro

Originally launched as a blog in 2009 by founder and CEO Rue Mapp, this nationally renowned not-for-profit seeks to reconnect “Black people to our lands, water, and wildlife through outdoor education, recreation, and conservation.” Outdoor Afro sponsors initiatives like Making Waves–a program that shares basic water safety and the joy of swimming with Black communities and families. Plus, the not-for-profit also taps Mapp’s design background through collaborations with brands like REI and Oaklandish

Take Action:

Black Girls Do Bike

Between the expensive gear and a longstanding reputation for elitism, cycling can be an intimidating sport. Black Girls Do Bike, a Pennsylvania-based non-profit founded in 2013, actively promotes a more inclusive cycling community by encouraging women of color to give cycling a try and pedal the distance together.

Take Action:

Black Folks Camp Too 

Founded by marketing maestro Earl B. Hunter Jr., Black Folks Camp Too teaches outdoor industry businesses and government branches how to become more welcoming of Black outdoor enthusiasts. Campers can use the org’s mapping tool to find businesses, campgrounds, and more that have gone through Black Folks Camp Too’s unique certification process, and they can also check out the brand’s Outside 101 content for more camping tips and tricks.

Take Action: 

Slim Pickins Outfitters 

Gear shops can be intimidating–not to mention overwhelmingly heterogeneous. Recently relocated to Mingus, Texas, Slim Pickins Outfitters is the first Black-owned gear retailer in the nation, and it’s on a mission to make the outdoors a more diverse and welcoming place for all. 

Take Action: 


According to GirlTREK, 81% of Black women are overweight and 52% of Black women are obese. Not to mention, members of this marginalized group are projected to live five to ten years less than those from other racial groups. Rather than running from these startling stats, GirlTREK is walking to embrace them head-on. The international non-profit focuses on encouraging Black women to walk regularly–a mission that’s inspired well over a million women to pursue a healthier lifestyle, making the organization the largest-ever public health movement for Black women. But physical and mental health are only two pieces of the puzzle, and GirlTREK also leverages this global sisterhood to mobilize marginalized communities to vote, conserve Black culture and history, fight for labor rights, protect the planet, and so much more. 

Take Action:


Formative years spent in the forest? There’s nothing better. BlackOutside, a Texas-based non-profit, reconnects Black youth with the wonders of wilderness through culturally rooted programming, including Camp Founder Girls, a weeklong summer camp for Black girls, and the Charles Roundtree Bloom Project, an outdoor-oriented healing program for children with incarcerated parents. 

Take Action:

4 Athletes and Activists To Follow And Support Right Now

“L.” Renee Blount


Renee Blount wears many hats–she’s an athlete, writer, photographer, brand strategist, you name it. Whether she’s shooting images for Patagonia, sharing her journey of learning to ski, or exploring Iceland with Chris Burkhard, her ‘gram is filled with insight and inspiration. Give her a follow here

Andrew Alexander King


Big waves, big mountains–Andrew Alexander King loves them both. An African American explorer, athlete, and activist, King was recently named as one of the 20 Most Influential People in the outdoor industry. Expect stunning visuals, motivation to get up and get after it, and thoughtful musings on life when you follow this multi-sport adventurer.

Rue Mapp

Founder of Outdoor Afro 

Outdoor Afro is the longest-standing organization listed in this article, and it was founded by none other than Oakland’s own Rue Mapp. The designer, entrepreneur, and speaker recently became a published author with the 2022 launch of her book “Nature Swagger: Stories And Visions Of Black Joy in the Great Outdoors.” Follow her on the ‘gram here, and be sure to check out her stylish hiking collection with REI, too. 

Teresa Baker

Founder of the In Solidarity Project and co-founder of The Outdoorist Oath

A serial outdoor diversity activist and organizer, Teresa Baker is no stranger to making waves in the outdoor industry. One of her most notable accomplishments? She launched the Outdoor Industry CEO Diversity Pledge, a pledge that encourages course-charting CEOs to steer their brands toward a more genuinely inclusive future. The pledge has since been signed by CEOs from over 180 outdoor brands. Stay up-to-date with Baker’s future projects and activism on her Instagram.

This Is Just The First Stretch Of A Long Road Trip

While this article is a solid start to expanding your understanding and support of diversity, equity, and inclusion in the great outdoors, it’s by no means a one-and-done solution. Remember that allyship is an ongoing process. 

On that note, while Black History Month can and should be a reminder to celebrate Black culture and support Black athletes, artists, non-profits, and small businesses, it’s also important that you take it upon yourself to learn, grow, and support diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts all year long. 

Last but not least, remember that it isn’t the responsibility of any of the organizations or individuals listed in this article to educate you on allyship. There are plenty of resources out there to do just that if you’re willing to do a little digging. Our advice is that you soak up what you can from these outdoor organizations, businesses, athletes, and culture shifters, keep reading and learning, and support them as much as you can. 

Thanks for reading, and as always, we’ll see you on the road, 

The Luno Crew


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