I get a little misty-eyed when I think about all the amazing women I’ve met through a shared love of the outdoors.
The societal narrative would have you think outdoorsy women are a rarity, but in my experience that could not be further from the truth. Whether it be through hiking, climbing, surfing, or drinking wine on a blanket and calling it a picnic, I have been lucky enough to connect with many adventurous, ceiling-shattering women over the years.
Though badass women are definitely out there, finding each other isn’t always easy in what can feel like male-dominated circles. This is especially true (and frustrating) if you are relatively new in town. That makes events like this all the more important.
Women’s Empowerment Tour
The Women’s Empowerment Tour came to Washington, DC on July 16, bringing us an inspiring evening of goosebump-givin’ stories, tales of outdoor adventure, and the chance to connect with other adventurous ladies in the area. (And, because we’re millennials and some stereotypes ring true, avocado toast.)
The event was brought to us by The Lady Alliance— an international community helping women find empowerment through adventure– and held at Arc’teryx Washington DC, a hi-tech outdoor apparel company known for supporting their local outdoorsy communities.
The tour traveled through Canada and the U.S., with each stop featuring local female speakers from the area. I was so impressed and inspired by the women who spoke at the DC event, I thought they deserved a little recap.
Descriptions adapted from The Lady Alliance.
Adeline Heymann is a photographer and marketing experience designer who has lived in the DC area for 15 years. An expedition photographer in the Arctic, Adeline is passionate about how images can transport you, give you a sense of wonder and the impact your mind and mood. She draws inspiration from nature and empowers others to opt outside.
At the event, Adeline spoke about juggling a 9-to-5 job with the need for travel and making “impossible” adventure dreams come true.
Janani was born in India and immigrated with her family to the suburbs of Philadelphia when she was a child. Trained as a scientist, Janani studies the human brain and how it contributes to the rise of mental illnesses like anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorders.
Janani discovered the power of the outdoors as a young adult and has used it as a form of therapy, meditation and recreation. She moved to D.C. to work as a government scientist and has made thecity her own outdoor adventure. Janani is a community co-chair of Wild Wilderness Women, where she gets to meet amazing women who also love the outdoors. She hopes to inspire women to find therapy and solace in the outdoors, make others aware of the power it can have to heal, and encourage access to outdoor recreation for diverse communities.
Kika Vila Nova
Kika moved to Utah from Brazil almost 20 years ago to get a Masters Degree in Dramatherapy. Though Utah is much smaller than her hometown Recife, she quickly fell in love with all the beauty it has to offer. And snow!
Kika became a Women Who Explore Ambassador when the program launched almost 2 years ago. She has hosted weekend getaways in Southern Utah and loves to get her friends outdoors!
Get connected with adventurous women in the DC area!
This event may have passed, but if I know the groups involved there will be more to come! Here are the best ways to link up with these fantastic organizations and future events.
- DC Outdoor Life newsletter: Cue shameless plug! Subscribe to the newsletter for one email every Sunday about upcoming outdoorsy events. You can also follow us on Facebook and Instagram.
- The Lady Alliance: Definitely follow these gals on Facebook and Instagram for outdoor inspiration and to learn about upcoming events. I also recommend joining their Facebook group!
- Arc’teryx Washington DC: They hold outdoorsy events at their store on H Street, which is worth checking out by itself! Check out their upcoming events here and follow them on Facebook for updates.
- Wild Wilderness Women: A DC-based group for adventurous women. Check out their website, follow them on Facebook and Instagram, and join them for (or organize) outdoor trips!
- American Alpine Club — For you climber babes out there, becoming an AAC member is a no-brainer. Besides truly awesome (and affordable) membership benefits, the AAC has several female-oriented events and opportunities in the works.