You know how you meet a group of people and you just KNOW your hearts beat to a similar beat?
You all know by now I feel that way about @womenswilderness, a non-profit whose work is centered around empowering girls and women through experiences and adventures in the wilderness.
Colorado people, I sure hope you join me in their second annual Gear and Cheer event on October 5th at 6pm in Boulder. And, if you're feeling extra generous you can buy a ticket (the "there in spirit" one-duh) even if you're out of state, as all proceeds go directly to getting girls outside. Want in on the fun? Link to the details and tickets is in my bio.
📸: by Tommy Lisbin on Unsplash.
Aaaand we're live!!! Check out @annakosmach's new guest blog post on Pretty Good for a Girl, "Carrying My Own Weight: A Self-Proclaimed Weakling's Journey to the Wilderness"!! (Link in bio.) The piece centers around a canoeing trip in the Boundary Waters that she took with her two best friends, Emma and Kaija (pictured here), as teenagers with their fathers. 🛶🏕
"You can’t get anywhere in the Boundary Waters without portaging, and it’s a slow and often heavy ordeal. Since we were canoeing, we brought much more stuff than one might bring on a backpacking or hiking trip. We had bags of food, pots, pans, silverware, plates and bowls, several changes of clothes, fishing gear, a fish scanner, three tents, fishing bait... I could go on. Ultra-light wasn't a part of our vocabulary back then. We'd unload everything from the canoes, and then three people would balance the canoes on their shoulders and trudge across the portage while the others began carrying as much equipment as they could. The canoes were long and heavy, but Emma, Kaija, and I each got a turn to carry our canoes across a portage. I remember it being a slow, burdensome process. I was sweating and hoping my dad would come along to take it off my shoulders, something my brothers certainly would have offered, but he didn't. Finally making it to the other side, my dad (who had beaten me there) helped me set it down, and feeling extremely relieved but also proud of myself, I turned back to go help bring over more of our stuff."
slowly but surely I'm being cohersed into mountain biking. by the boyfriend, by strangers, by co-workers, by random trail users.
I owned + rather regularly rode a decent mountain bike when I moved to Colorado, but repeatedly threatened to throw it off a cliff while out riding.
actually, I'm quite sure I did just let it go over a few too-aggressive-for-me trail obstacles.
it bounced pretty darn good, fwiw.
this rage toward a hunk of metal on two wheels is one of the things that pushed me toward trail running. back then I only ran on roads, yet I often thought "this would be great to run" + "gawd, I'd rather be running" while squeezing the grip off my handle bars on rocky single track.
today @lynnepetre + I started out on a hike along a well known trail near Evergreen...but there was a charity race, so we bailed out early. also, burritos.
side note: burritos + cinnamon rolls at Muddy Buck = worth cutting a hike short.
I justified my decision to turn back early on the first @sixpackofpeakscolorado summits by saying "I'll borrow @rberghammer's bike + come back on a weekday"...as in, I consciously decided I would rather bike than hike or run. who am I!? this is legitimately concerning to me. 🚴♀️😮🏔️ #colorfulcolorado#weekendadventure#sixpackofpeaks
Over here in the great state of Colorado, we know how to Fall and Winter at the exact same time. Made it up to The Citadel in the most gorgeous conditions ever with da @halfpint22 today. The fresh snow and ice made for a fun scramble to the summit! #ForceofNature 📷: Kim aka Halfpint
this wasn't the summit I had originally planned for today...but it is the summit that allowed me to snag an extra 2 hours of sleep, breakfast at the climbing gym with @rberghammer + a dozen Max miles.
sometimes compromise + choosing what's comfortable just makes sense. 💞🏔️🍁 #exploresummit
Heeeey who's that sexy shadow waving....oh it's me! 😂 Remember when I mentioned I'd be putting together a blog for @choosemountains a few weeks ago? Well it's finally up! Link is in my bio, let me know what you think!
Coming at you all with a sneak peek from @annakosmach's debut guest blog piece, "Carrying My Own Weight: A Self-Proclaimed Weakling's Trip to the Wilderness" centered around a canoeing trip to the Boundary Waters she and her two best friends took as teenagers with their fathers- 🌸
"When getting the fire going for dinner at night, I attempted to help, only to be shuffled away from the fire ring because my brothers were both Boy Scouts and, apparently, knew the best methods for fire building. This was a common occurrence throughout my childhood and adolescence. I'm a hands-on learner, but when I would take too long to complete a task, someone else in my family would usually take the reins. I got used to it, but looking back it makes me really uncomfortable that I did. I think to myself, “You are and always have been capable. Why let others take learning experiences away from you?” Every time I would let my brothers or someone else take over, I was giving up a learning experience, a chance to grow, and allowing myself to sit back and be a bystander in my own life. I look back and think maybe I was too whiny, maybe I liked girly things too much, allowing others to categorize me as fragile or lacking and, thus, to sideline me. Which then in turn made me sideline myself and not fight for those learning opportunities. It became a cycle: someone sidelines me, I then sideline myself, and then people think I am incapable, therefore making me think about myself in a similar light. I was already a girly-girl, and so I sat back and got comfortable in this predetermined feminine role. Maybe, as a young child, having a Barbie sleeping bag didn’t win me points with the fire-building kids. But having a love for Disney Princesses, Barbies, and twirly dresses doesn’t make someone any less capable of lighting a match, or any less deserving of the opportunity to learn about something they’ve shown interest in."
I had an emotional moment today as I sat in traffic, listening to a song I love, having just spent time with two best friends I've known for years. I was so overcome with a love for life that my eyes welled up with tears. I felt sheer joy and gratitude for those who've continued to stand beside me even through the times I was hard to love. For this life I lead that's often both adventures and mundane. Gratitude for the broken heart I've been given time and time again, because in the end it made me strong and independent and taught me how to be a more loving person toward myself and others. I felt gratitude that today things seemed to be aligning just right.
On the day Taryn took this picture of me, we hiked for such an unexpectedly long time that I became miserable and so consumed with my suffering that I stopped seeing the beauty around me. (And we literally couldn't see as the air became thick with smoke.) Towards the end of the night, we had been hiking in the dark for hours and she kept pointing out the night sky and the red moon and I ignored her or grumbled to myself about how we see the fucking moon every day so who cares let's just keep hiking. But I see it now. There's so much beauty in the everyday. And our pain can illuminate so much of it if we just allow ourselves to see.
Maybe I am starting to miss this just a little. Good thing Bishop season is right around the corner! I do miss @melsolvesproblems and @professionalvagrant though! I can't remember which in one of them took this 📸
Running Thin: A Metamorphosis. I used to run to make myself thin. Now I run to make myself happy. New blog post up, link in bio. If after reading, you would like to talk, please let me know! 📷: @sara_barracuda
Hey friends!! Meet our newest guest blogger, Anna Kosmach (@annakosmach)!!! Anna graduated from Lawrence University in 2016 with a B.A. in Film Studies. Since then she has moved to Atlanta, GA, where she is pursuing a career in the television and film industry. Luckily for her, there are plenty of opportunities just outside the city for wilderness adventures. You can find her hiking, camping, skiing, and enjoying trail walks with her Great Dane, Birdie.
Stay tuned for her piece centered around canoeing as a teenager with her two best friends and their fathers in the Boundary Waters. Anna discusses how growing up with two brothers who often took charge, she developed a tendency to allow others to take the reins. Anna described how she learned to take on responsibility and to meet challenges, overcoming this self perception that she was incapable of taking on new tasks and developing new skills.
We spent an entire day lounging quietly by the lake, napping and reading and staring at clouds. I found myself a perfect sunny rock right by the water but really I think Taryn had the best spot right here. 😍
It's often been said that change starts with us. With each person on an individual level.
What’s amazing about the culture that we live in today is how many of us are seeking to improve, to grow. We have a craving to transform and become better versions of ourselves. Sometimes, that can feel like an uphill battle.
One factor that increases a person’s chances of changing in the way they’re hoping to, is having a support system.
Now, before you roll your eyes at me, this is backed by scientific research. The different environments we put ourselves in can either hinder or accelerate our desired progress. This is one of the reasons behind all of our events and activities at Women’s Wilderness.
Our intention is to create a welcoming and safe environment, in which you are surrounded by other like-minded and encouraging women- while spending time in nature. Double whammy.
When was the last time you gave yourself the gift of a new environment? How about surrounded yourself with other women seeking a similar experience? What are you waiting for?
I'm rewatching Battlestar Galactica. It's so good. It's consuming my life again. I'm hoping I find the strength to tear myself off the couch next week to go back to this gorgeous place, if smoke levels and fire closures allow.
So say we all.
spent my morning on a bike. first it was all "yay, sunshine!" but it ended with "pedal faster, now!"...because, rain + thunder + lightning.
spoiler: I beat the rain. to the bus stop. because I live three miles UP the mountain that was buried under flashing storm clouds + my legs were already 26 mountain miles into the day. thanks to the bus, the bike + I rolled in the front door as the skies opened up. perfect timing.
tangent: it's a darn good thing I didn't borrow any one's fancy pants mountain bike *before* I befriended Jackalope [my touring bike]. ohyee. today's ride on a mountain bike was glorious.
sad-gent: except, now that I've experienced the smooth flow of @rberghammer's mtb, I may have to break up with Jackalope. the gear shifts, the feathery brakes, the bounce...Jackalope just isn't capable of such things, because, well, he's a well loved touring bike.
saddle-gent: that said...Jackalope does have an awesome saddle that my bum loves, so I'm hanging onto that forever. my bum was/is *not* a fan of whatever piece of uncomfortable plastic Robb rides around on. 🚴♀️🏔️⛈️ #adventurebiking#outsideisfree#fromwhereiride#whereiride
We are humans wasting our time with words...what we think people want to hear, what we think we want ourselves to be, what we want to know, what we don't understand. Sometimes we use our words as weapons, weapons that have no tangible consequences. We spread words around like fire and even if the words don't hold truth, sometimes it doesn't matter, sometimes the damage has already been done well after the fire has been put out. Make sure every word you choose to use is worth the time it takes to speak them. 📷: @iliketrails
Because @hamminator2017 just showed up to my house!!! Here's a throwback from when we climbed the OZ last summer! We also crammed 4 people at the top of the third pitch 😂😂 📸 @chrisbenchetler I believe!
I took far better pictures during my trek through the Boulder mountains today but I felt like this look on my face says it all 😂. 16 miles, 5k of vert and 3 peaks with continuous hunger, a relentless beating sun and the conclusion that I'm never running with only sugar for food in my pack again. It was simultaneously a great and a bad day...with the quiet eeriness all the way until the first summit, running into Chris Mocko on the trails and forcing a sweaty hug on him and totally weirding him out, the awesome feeling reaching each summit...and then the bonk that would never end. Thank you Papa Hack, the most sweetest person ever, who saved me from this by giving up the rest of his run and keeping me company for the last 4 miles of pure suffering. It just wouldn't be a day on the trails without the gentle reminder that I have to be somewhat crazy to enjoy doing this all the time 😂
Hey, @dylmaher here! Over the last year I've turned to journaling as an act of meditation, and I thought that I would share an excerpt from an entry that I had written after a weekend-long Crack Climbing workshop in Vedauwoo, WY with @womenswilderness and 9 women I had never met before. "Each of the women that I met this weekend inspired me in ways I did not expect. How driven each woman was and how much they had to share with the world. It'll never fail to amaze me how much magic is present when you bring women together...the love and support that you feel. Each woman had something to teach me not only about myself, but life as well. Watching these women overcome challenges and grow in such a loving setting, reminded me how important it is to embrace who you are and to accept others for doing the same. It was incredible to feel how closely we had bonded only knowing one another for 48 hours." 📸@acountway
If you'd like to suffer vicariously through me, you may do so my following my progress at the link below (and in my bio) #lotoja 😦
Hey friends, it's @dylmaher stopping by and taking over the @womenswilderness Instagram for the week!
This time last year, I was fresh out of college, incredibly unsure of the woman I was and struggling to discover the kind of woman I wanted to be. I took the advice of a friend who told me to take the time to write down the things that I truly valued in life and to prioritize them. At the top of that list was 'Empowering Women' and 'Being Outdoors'. I immediately began researching organizations I could get involved in that upheld these values, which lead me to the powerful ladies of @womenswilderness . Now here I am 1 year later, having volunteered at community outreach events and having been apart of their courses, I am more confident in the woman I am becoming than ever before. Over the next few days, I'm gonna share with you some of my experiences with @womenswilderness and how these experiences have changed me in ways I never thought possible. Stay Tuned! 📸@n_khurana
Walked outside after work last night and was taken by surprise at the cool air. The days of climbing in shorts and warm summer evenings are coming to an end. Fall is almost here. Anyone have any fall plans? 📸 @pangtastic
Growth Vs Fixed Mindset. Learn the difference between how someone with a growth mindset views failure, obstacles, effort, feedback and success of others vs how someone with a fixed mindset views these things. Listen to @mtnrdy 's recent podcast with Justin Su'a. It's worth it, trust me! 📷: @iliketrails
The worst thing about shooting a magazine assignment is that you have to wait so long for the issue to come out. The best thing about shooting a magazine assignment is seeing the issue when it finally comes out. ☯️ I shot this story on @womenswilderness for @fortcollinsmagazine last spring. Still one of the best days I've had shooting all year.
Back to the mountains we go! Thanks ladies for making the first @outdoorbella/ @girlswhoclimbofficial meet up a success! It was so awesome to get to meet new women of all levels to climb with! Looking forward to our next one!
#WomensWilderness team member Stacy Kolcum (IG: @StacyAK10) shared with us her need-to-know-knot for camping.⠀
She says, "If you are going to learn one knot for camping, the trucker's hitch is your best friend!"⠀
Learn how to tie a Trucker's Hitch here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W86XNUmElP4⠀
📸 Cred: Will Styer
Here is what love tells you.
you are yours before you choose anyone else. you are cicada and buzz. loose flannel and cupped green tea. you are soft knuckles. the kind to know warmth. like dawn. you are dance alone. you are unafraid of alone. it is acoustic. the rain. it is his name and its irrelevance. it is your name and its blossom. its awaken. it is run to the ocean. and there is no sadness. and there is no sadness. and there is no sadness. you are growing. a woman. a woman who knows her name.
. - Tonya Ingram (@tonyainstagram)
35mm. Portra 400.
I didn't grow up camping. As a family we spent a lot of time hiking but never stayed overnight. And I wasn't very outdoorsy for a big chunk of my twenties. It was all short hikes and nature walks for me. So it's still new and foreign and I stand around and have to ask my friends how to build a tent and how to hang a bear bag and how to poop and how to cook. I'm a beginner and a learner out here. And that sometimes makes me self-conscious and uncomfortable because I hate doing things I'm not good at, but I also like throwing myself into discomfort to grow. And it's the best. Sleeping outside is the best. Crawling into my sleeping bag at the end of a long day is the best. I loved sleeping in this little spot the other night.
🎶You brought the flames and you put me through hell
I had to learn how to fight for myself
And we both know all the truth I could tell
I'll just say this is "I wish you farewell"
I hope you're somewhere prayin', prayin'
I hope your soul is changin', changin'
I hope you find your peace
Falling on your knees, prayin'🎶 [Kesha] 📷: @kkroo917
Heading down to the Southern California heat! Don't forget Wednesday @outdoorbella and @girlswhoclimbofficial along with @britneejane And I are hosting a meet up at @hangar18riverside this Wednesday at 7pm! Message me for details!
I live for pink skies and sunsets. I was seriously in awe of this place last night. If you're local and want to see it too, they are opening it up to the public for their 2nd annual Sunflower Festival this coming weekend. 🌻
Taryn led the way and consequently the majority of my pictures are some version of her pure awesomeness in this beautiful location. Took this at the start of the Upper Enchantments just before the smoke rolled in.
I spent the last three days with two amazing, strong, kickass women on my second-ever backpacking trip. We spent two blissful days at Colchuck Lake, and hiked out through the Enchantments yesterday. Our hike out tested me on every level emotionally and physically. I think I experienced every emotion all in a day. I've hiked through the core three times now, so the terrain wasn't new, and the mileage and vertical gain were doable for me, but it was my first time hiking for seventeen straight hours with a full 30ish-pound pack, and it really took its toll. By the end of the day I had been up for a full 24 hours and had cried many tears...I was exhausted physically and emotionally...my knees took the hardest hit and are still in pain today, but I'm so thankful to have shared the challenge with two awesome ladies by my side. I'm still processing the entirety of the trip and it's one I will cherish.
I actually almost didn't even join the girls on the hike out (I had originally planned on hiking out alone the way we came to give myself an easier day..ha) but ultimately I'm glad I changed my mind. The Enchantments are an absolute dream. Flowing water and white rocks everywhere. I edited this photo but it doesn't look far off from the original...there's a large fire in Cle Elum making the area super smoky and adding a golden-red light to our surroundings. And I get to come back and camp here in two weeks. 🙌
Some days you do three summits of Sanitas, go home and watch Game of Thrones for a few hours and then go back out and do hill repeats at Green Mountain during the hottest part of the day...well that was actually a first for me but daaang it felt pretty good! 12 1/2 miles with 5,000 feet of vert and about 12,000 ounces of sweat for the day...now for Game of Thrones again 😁 📷: @k_sealer
I haven't been psyched to boulder this entire summer, but with Bishop season just around the corner maybe that will change! Maybe I'll also send this thing this year! Acid Wash Stand V7 📸 @professionalvagrant
today I attempted running...it's going to be a work in progress for a while, but I did not die. yet. 👊🏔️💚 [tomorrow, when everything hurts, I'll be blaming you + your peer pressure, @ironbeard1] #traildog#trailtime#yourlead
Hey ladies! This Wednesday ( sept 6th ) at 7pm @outdoorbella in collaboration with @girlswhoclimbofficial will be hosting a meet up at @hangar18riverside. Let's just get together and have fun and make new friends! Looking forward to climbing with all of you! 📸 @nipolieolie Tag any ladies who you think might be interested! Also feel free to ask me any questions!
Grateful for the friends in my life that help keep me sane, laugh at the face of struggle, acknowledge and celebrate that we each have our own strengths on the trail and jealousy and competition is non existent. ❤️ Writing a blog for @choosemountains about this very topic coming out SOON! #ForceOfNature 📷: @k_sealer