PHOTO GALLERY: Queer On The Outside

Welcome to Queer IRL, a monthly Autostraddle community photo series that gathers little clips of lesbian, bisexual, queer and otherwise-identified women, trans and non-binary folks, just living our lives in 2017.

Funny story about this gallery! For the entire month of April, I’d look at my inbox and think, “Wow, nothing. They’re not sending anything!” and I even complained to Heather Hogan about it.

How could this be? So many people had specifically requested an outdoor theme for the next gallery! The weather was gorgeous! I put off even starting to upload and format the gallery, because what was the rush? It would take less than half an hour to put together the 15 or so emails I remembered seeing here and there in my inbox. I was so sad. What had gone wrong?

I’ll tell you what: nothing.

See, I’d so cleverly set up a filter for emails with the subject line QUEER OUTSIDE , making each email bypass my inbox and go straight to handy folder, where they sat, unread. All 176 of them. Sometimes it does not pay to be organized!

Anyway, wow, you guys really love the outdoors! I’ve never in my life felt so inspired to hike to the top of something. You’re taking up space and pushing yourself and supporting each other and laughing and eating snacks and hugging chickens and goats. You’re being super alive out there! I’m so grateful to everyone who submitted to this gallery, and I hope you enjoy roaming through over 200 photos of your extended queer family!


Riley and Alex Santangelo / 27, 25 / Graphic designer; Nanny / Asbury Park Boardwalk, NJ

“My wife and I decided to do an impromptu bridal shower invitation photo shoot against the murals at Asbury Park Boardwalk in NJ. This picture is an outtake from the session (but it ended up being my favorite <3).”


Kai / 22 / Student, Peace Corps Volunteer (in 2 months!!!!) / Ireland

“In this photo I’m on a backpacking trip in Ireland! It was really cold, but I got to climb a tiny mountain and it was the best.”


Marissa / 29 / Journalist / Paradise Valley, MT

“I’m fly fishing on the Yellowstone River in February. I love fishing in the winter because fewer people do it. Plus, you feel a little badass for standing in the cold water (protected by waders and warm layers). The Yellowstone the longest undammed river in the contiguous US and one of my favorite rivers.”


Lauren / 29 / PhD Student and TA in Gender and Women’s Studies / Asilah, Morocco

“I was studying Arabic in Morocco when I came upon this amazing rainbow mural. It was the gayest thing I saw during my entire trip, so of course I made my friends take excessive pictures of me in front of it.”


Elena Zamarripa (they·them) / 24 / Beer Steward, Barista, KitchenBitch / Whatcom Falls, Bellingham, WA

“My friend snapped this disposable camera shot of me feeling the water in my future hometown. I’d already planned to move there in two years but was apprehensive until I met the falls.”


Julia H / 18 / Student / Wrangell-St. Elias National Park, AK

“Here’s a candid of me looking as sad as I felt on the inside about hiking in this gorgeous place. I made the questionable decision to have my first-ever backpacking experience be a month off-trail in Alaska…”


Analicia Hawkins (she·her), Aryn Maitland (they·them) / 23, 25 / Events Associate; Job Developer / Mount Tamalpais State Park, CA

“My partner and I went on a hike in this lovely state park just outside of San Francisco. I had just gotten my car broken into and my suitcase stolen, but this was a great stress reliever and a really cute first date!”


Ella / 18 / Student / CO

“In the backyard with the family I nanny for in Colorado.”


Anoma and Robin Stoiber / Late 30s / Police Dispatcher; Officer / Milwaukee, WI

“Taken last year at Milwaukee’s annual Pride fest.”


Annie (and Lily) / 25 / Furniture Repair Extraordinaire (Faithful Pit Bull) / Blue Ridge Parkway outside of Asheville, NC

“I love hiking every chance I get, and am lucky enough to live in beautiful Asheville, NC where I can make it a reality. Lily is a rescue from the streets of Philly who’s been by my side for two years now. Her happiness in the outdoors and away from city bustle, is pretty obvious from the big grin in this picture! We’ve hiked together all over the US and Canada, and are on track for our goal of hiking 100 miles in 2017.”


Are you following us on Facebook?

Pages: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 See entire article on one page

Profile gravatar of Laneia

Laneia is the Executive Editor and founding member of Autostraddle, and she thinks you're fucking rad. She's 36, has two kids, two dogs, one Megan, some personal essays and a lot of emails in her inbox. More at LaneiaJones.com.

Laneia has written 649 articles for us.

72 Comments

  1. 7

    I love this!

    The other galleries were great, but fed my “Oh, no, no one else has a rustic farm meets country château aesthetic—I’m not queer enough!” anxieties. This one, though… I have a garden and grow stuff, I hike, I run, I bike, I visit parks and beaches and stand around in rivers!

    Also, you’re all too darned cute. The couples pictures slayed me.

      • 1

        Nope, fortunately not. I have to say though that we only got close to those we found in ‘touristy’ places (so they’re probably used to people being around them), we kept our distance with the ‘wild’ ones cause you never know 🙂

        A girl I met when I was there told me that thing and I was like SAME.

  2. 7

    I’m from Asheville. I have been all over the Blue Ridge Parkway. That’s where I learned how to drive. My parents would take us to the Parkway and let us drive. I loved living there because there were so many beautiful places to go for a day or more. I have hiked and camped all over the Parkway and Pisgah National Forest with my Springers. Now I live in Winston Salem and go up to Pilot Mountain for day hikes. There were many pictures where I thought “I want to go there”. These are wonderful.

  3. 3

    Oh Emily of Saskatoon, this made me tear up:

    “These transitions have been much needed, soul filling, confusing, frustrating, wonderful and exhausting, and have had me deeply questioning what I’m doing and why I’m doing it, but last night the northern lights were so vibrant, dancing magnificently above as we walked by the river, and they told me I am exactly where I need to be.”

    I love and admire you so very much!

  4. 4

    Queer femme botanists!! In the Columbia Gorge! I am one of those! That’s where I am!!! Sofia if you see this I would love to botanize with y’all, I’ll bring fresh bread :’)

  5. 5

    you’re all so beautiful in the great outdoors! i’m very inspired to do a shit-ton of hiking/camping/gardening/other activities in dirt this summer.
    also: Rural Dykes of America sounds like the greatest thing in the world and i’m suddenly really bummed that i don’t live in southern wisconsin.

  6. 2

    Wow, we really love National Parks! Also, I’m moving to Northern California next year. Does anyone have some hiking trail recommendations for Santa Clara County and/or San Mateo County?

  7. 2

    Shout out to the ‘Strayans who submitted their gorg photos – wootwoot! 🙂
    And hopefully next time more photos from Asia / the Philippines!
    Thanks for putting this together, Laneia! Will there be another batch?? 🙂

  8. 3

    Hey Diana on Page 4, I live walking distance from that beer garden and was just there last weekend! I’ll definitely be there more often over the summer, so keep an eye out for purple hair – or just DM me, whichever’s easier.

  9. 3

    This gallery makes me want to go hiking and find other queer people in the wild! And it made me miss beautiful Britain. I forget how nice the countryside is back home. But I’m living in the Basque Country at the moment, and it’s pretty gorgeous here too.

    • 0

      It’s true – in that moment, the stars were 100% aligned!

      (A backstory: on that trip, I accidentally miscommunicated with the neighbors looking after my own cat, and the poor guy didn’t eat for three days. I was an absolute wreck about it, even though the neighbors rushed over and found that he was cranky but fine. Scottish graveyard cat was like a soothing feline balm for my frazzled heart!)

  10. 1

    Well these are all just dandy! What an awesome collection of photos reflecting the diversity of our queer world.

    Although I can’t help but notice that I am the official ‘eldergay’ #42goingon24 😏

  11. 1

    Yay, hello from Slovakia to folks from Czech republic and Hungary! 🙂
    Unfortunately I missed this call for photos, I love hiking and biking and being outside.
    Everybody is visiting such beautiful places. I really liked this gallery.

Contribute to the conversation...

You must be logged in to post a comment.