It’s a difficult metric to measure, but when it comes to butts, Peachypeaks probably has one of the most famous rears in Colorado. She’s also a serious mountaineer.
The Denver-based woman’s main Instagram account (@peachypeaks, naturally) features, at the time of this publication, around 250 photos almost entirely of her backside – usually parked on top of a mountain or with some other scenic vista in the background. And over 131,000 people are following it, some fans going so far as to send her paintings or illustrations recreating her posterior-based portraits. Occasionally her friends, partner, and dog join her. (To preserve her anonymity, she never reveals her face or her name, which is why we’re referring to her by her social media handle.)
The derrière depictions started as means of lightening the mood during outdoor adventures.
“I was doing a lot of hikes and stuff outside and sometimes kind of dangerous climbs, and it kind of started more to bring levity to situations,” Peachypeaks said. “It started out with my partner, who was like, ‘Yeah, just, you know, pull your pants down and we’ll take a butt photo,’ and then it kind of became more of a lifestyle over time.”
The turn toward nudism was not without precedent, though.
“I’ve always been really comfortable with nudity,” she said. “I was a swimmer and I don’t know if that made me comfortable, but I’ve always been kind of like a little bit of a wild child. It was only a few years ago that I really was like, ‘Oh, this is like something fun that I really want to be part of my life and normal.’”
The process she goes through to get the ‘Gram often doesn’t involve being naked throughout.
“Most of the time, I’m not able to hike the full hike nude because most of the time I’m in places where there are people. There’s certain times when I’m in National Forest land where it’s protected – you can actually be nude – but most of the time, I’m not a place where nudity is acceptable,” she said.
That said, Peachypeaks occasionally finds areas where she can hike naked for long periods of time ... including in our own backyard. While hiking the 17-mile Purgatory Creek Approach to the Chicago Basin, she only saw a handful of people over the four days she spent in the area, and was able to stay nude for miles at a time.
Why does she do it?
“I’m not a very spiritual person,” she said. “But I guess that’s where I feel like I’m most spiritual, in a sense – when I’m naked nature. You get to know your body more and also just become comfortable with the way it is. I think our society puts people in a box ... but being comfortable in your own body is a huge way to get past that.”
Speaking of comfort, Peachypeaks doesn’t limit herself to certain seasons – many of her photos feature her baring it all on snowy landscapes in the dead of winter. To a certain extent, this is part of her learning to be comfortable outside. She’s read “What Doesn’t Kill Us” by Scott Carney, in which a journalist uses Dutch athlete Wim Hof’s methods for enduring extreme cold to test the endurance of his body, and keeps up on developments in the science of resisting cold. But a lot of those chilly cheek-showing shots are just being momentarily silly. She mostly saves the extended nudity for the summer.
For anyone who is interested in experimenting with nude mountaineering, she recommends first learning how to be a good and safe person outdoors – being respectful of nature and knowing what the Ten Essentials are.
As for the nudity: “It’s pretty simple,” she said. “ You just kind of take your clothes off.”
There’s also a degree of social awareness that a nude mountaineer must master, though, and Peachypeaks suggests perhaps heading to a few naturist places to do so, where there are boundaries and norms to follow when it comes to being naked, but where one also has the option of keeping their clothes on. One of her favorite places to disrobe is Valley View Hot Springs, near Moffat. She is partial to the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, though she said her favorite range is the San Juans.
Peachypeaks’ current goals include ice climbing in Ouray and completing all of Colorado’s fourteeners. After doing 48, she only has 10 left (two in the San Juans – she’s saving Uncompahgre Peak for last). So far her favorite has been Pyramid Peak, near Aspen, and the picturesque Maroon Bells.