Girls gone wild

Girls gone wild

The sixth annual Women Outside Adventure Forum is returning to Durango on Sept. 22-24, bringing a lineup of storytelling and hands-on activities.

The theme for this year’s forum is “Living in Alignment,” and, as in years past, it will kick off Friday night with a local adventurer story night featuring local women. Then, women (and brave men, too) will have the chance to turn that stoke into action with a series of outdoor clinics.

“Since 2016, I’ve had the opportunity to meet and learn from some incredible women,” forum organizer and founder Margaret Hedderman said. “They’ve inspired me to pursue big, life-changing adventures, and I hope this year’s event will help other women to do the same.”

Hedderman explained this year’s theme as “that feeling when everything in your life starts falling into place” and how adventure and the outdoors can inform that. 

“It’s like flow. It’s an awesome feeling that many of us experience for the first time in the outdoors,” she said.

The forum is dedicated to fostering an inclusive environment where participants can grow confidence, connections and skills that enhance their outdoor pursuits, said Hedderman. By facilitating the exchange of stories, expertise and knowledge, the forum seeks to ignite a passion for adventure.

Over the course of the weekend, participants will have the opportunity to get fired up for outdoor fun at various clinics, including: 

• “Mountain Running: Skills & Safety” with Arcelia Valle, of La Plata County Search & Rescue, and Maggie Guterl, of Tailwind Nutrition

• “Introduction to Lead Climbing” with Mia Tucholke of San Juan Expeditions

• Group gravel ride with Nichole Baker

• Audio storytelling with Cat Jaffee

• “Adventure Dog First Aid” with Riverview Animal Hospital

There will also be a special clinic on “Living Your Purpose” with Stephanie Pace, a local wellness practitioner. In addition, the weekend will feature prizes from Osprey, Outdoor Research, Fjallraven and Backcountry Experience. All proceeds from the event benefit the San Juan Citizens Alliance (last year’s event raised $1,000 for the local nonprofit.)

The event is organized by Backcountry Experience and is sponsored by a slew of local and national businesses.

For more details or to register, visit www.womenoutside.org. 

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