Latria Graham is a journalist living in South Carolina. Her writing has appeared in Bicycling, The New York Times, Backpacker, Garden&Gun and other local and national outlets. You can find more of her work at LatriaGraham.com.
Two years ago, Latria Graham wrote an essay about the challenges of being Black in the outdoors. Countless readers reached out to her, asking for advice on how to stay safe in places where nonwhite people aren’t always welcome. She didn't write back, because she had no idea what to say. In the aftermath of a revolutionary spring and summer, she responds.
There’s a common misconception that black people don’t love wild places. Latria Graham, a southerner with deep connections to farms, rivers, and forests, says the problem isn’t desire but access—and a long history of laws and customs that have whitewashed our finest public lands.