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After the Capitol insurrection, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez started backpacking

New York congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez declared her love of backpacking on Instagram this week—and shouted out some well-known advocacy groups working to make the outdoors more inclusive.


In a video posted to her Instagram Story this weekend, New York 14th Congressional District Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez divulged a tidbit about her personal life that has drawn excitement and attention around the outdoor industry in recent days.

The congresswoman is, apparently, an avid backpacker.

In her video, which shows Ocasio-Cortez toting an Osprey backpack on a sunny trail in New York, the congresswoman said that she takes time off and cares for herself by getting into the woods, a hobby she picked up after the storming of the U.S. capitol by rioters in January.

“After the insurrection, I felt like I really needed a practice to help ground me,” Ocasio-Cortez says in the video. “It was getting a lot harder for me to settle my mind in the immediate aftermath.”

She went on to shout out some well-known advocacy groups in the industry—organizations that followers submitted as responses to the congresswoman’s posted question, “Favorite women, poc, lgbt+, LNT, conservation, etc camping accounts?”

Tagged with the response “Lots of recs here! Thanks, I’ll check them out and learn more,” Ocasio-Cortez promoted to her followers the groups and individuals Unlikely Hikers, Pattie Gonia, Indigenous Women Who Hike, and Outdoor Afro, among others.

Read more: How Unlikely Hikers’ Jenny Bruso teamed up with Gregory to release the industry’s first plus-size pack line

Unlikely Hikers reposted the congresswoman’s Instagram Story to its main feed, commenting, “I’ve got so much gratitude for this shout out in @aoc’s stories, along with all of my faves, and I’m thrilled to see her find peace and grounding in nature.”