Melanin Base Camp in 2018
Happy New Year from our family to yours! As we ring in 2019 we’d like to share our highlights from the past year!
In 2018, we published 94 articles, racked up 92.2k page views and said hello to 47.3k of you! Thanks for reading. Here’s what our bloggers have been up to!
PNW based blogger Rebecca Ross led an international climbing expedition to Mexico which was sponsored by a Mazamas Monty Smith Grant. She also became a climbing ambassador for Rock Climbing Women and published an article “How Mountaineering Changed My Perspective on Beauty” in the Climbing Zine before finishing off the year with a REI Adventures commercial shoot in Costa Rica.
Dr. Favia Dubyk competed in Season 10 of America Ninja Warrior. She also climbed her hardest grade so far—a V10 and did a photo shoot with climbing photographer Irene Yee for the cover of Pam Neal’s guidebook for Texas Canyon. Lastly, she was offered and accepted a hematopathology fellowship and made it through another year cancer free
Adam Edwards survived a near drowning in 2018 after finding himself trapped upside down in a completely submerged kayak inside an underwater cave. He wrote about the experience in 28 Days Later. After that experience he spent time teaching advanced whitewater safety courses, and paddled rapids on the Illinois River and Palette River with friends. His highlights included going sub 5 min on the Green River course and finding a core group of friends on a REI Adventures commercial shoot in Costa Rica.
In 2018, Nadia Mercado spent a lot of time outdoors sport climbing, rappelling, and hiking with visits to Linville Gorge, portions of the Appalachian Trail , Zion National Park, Bruce Canyon National Park, Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Grand Teton National Park, Antelope Canyon, New River Gorge and more. She also dealt with personal tragedy—losing a friend to illness and a family member unexpectedly. Nadia was selected as an Emerging Leader and a panelist for the annual conservation conference SHIFT Jackson Hole. She was also featured in the Blue Ridge Outdoors 30 under 30 and really enjoyed hanging out with fellow MBC bloggers on a REI Adventures commercial shoot in Costa Rica. Nadia’s articles focused on her experience as a climber, skydiver, hiker and the proud daughter of an immigrant mother. She also tackled the problem of how the outdoor community excludes and erases certain groups by how narrowly we define the outdoors.
After guest blogging on a two-part series featuring Women of Color in in skydiving Caroline joined Melanin Base Camp as a regular contributor in July 2018. Over the past year she split her time between CO, UT and CA while climbing, paragliding, backpacking, skydiving and learning to wingsuit. Caroline ended the year by writing our first ever gear review and a participating in a REI Adventures commercial shoot in Costa Rica.
David joined Melanin Base Camp as a blogger in August 2018 shortly before embarking upon a nomadic year of climbing throughout the U.S. In 2018, he climbed in eight different states, summiting 13,726′ Bear Creek Spire via the North Arete in the Eastern Sierras, CA; 1,800’ Flyboys route in North Cascades, WA; and 500’ Durrance Route on Devils Tower, WY. He also climbed internationally in Blue Mountains, New South Wales, Australia; Squamish, British Columbia, Canada; Sacred Valley of Lamay, Cusco, Peru. Overall, he spent a total of 74 nights sleeping under the stars! He wrote about his brush with death after falling three stories during a rock climbing trip.
In 2018 Brown Environmentalist founder and photojournalist Michael Estrada connected with a lot of dope people of color through a mutual love of the outdoors. He spoke at several conferences including one at the Metcalf Institute at the University of Rhode Island. He was also featured in the September 2018 issue of Triathlete Magazine. His highlights include completing a backcountry hike with his partner and his dad and publishing articles and photo essays in a few different magazines including Loam: Reawakening Resilience. He also really enjoyed getting to know the other Melanin Base Camp bloggers. Check out his two part series photo essay of ultra runner Faith Briggs here!
Tiffany joined Melanin Base Camp as a blogger in April 2018. In 2018 she hiked the Short Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, finally learned what the Yellowstone hype was all about and backpacked a segment of the Long Trail with the Venture Out Project. Tiffany also caught Washington D.C.’s cherry blossom fever, walked over 23 miles down the California coast from Long Beach to Newport Beach and made the case for why green is not the new black!
Danielle founded DiversifyOutdoors.com in January 2018 in order to amplify the digital platforms of outdoor diversity and inclusion advocates from historically marginalized communities across the U.S. Over the past year she also focused on rehabbing from hip and ankle surgery, visiting accessible national parks in WV and VA and prioritizing health and family. Her favorite highlight from 2018 was jumping out of a hot air balloon over Amish country in PA. She also enjoyed interviewing adventure athletes of color from around the U.S to include African-American climbers Abby Dione, Gabe Patterson & Justin Forrest Parks, Asian-American mountaineers Eric Catig and Don Nguyen as well as African-American skydiver Nicholas Walker. Finally, Danielle is super grateful for the opportunity to work with such an incredible, talented team of bloggers!
Check out our Top Articles in 2018
In 2018 we tackled race, gender, stereotypes and limiting beliefs. We also climbed, hiked, paddled and jumped our way around the world! Check out our Top 10 most viewed articles from 2018 below.