Influential Women In The Wilderness: 52 Hike Challenge Celebrates Women’s History Month

March is Women’s History Month! To celebrate, we are highlighting some of the most influential women in the wilderness. 

Keep reading to learn about:

  • Female founders and thought leaders in the outdoors space
  • Women who pioneered amazing hiking products
  • Famous female hikers who made history
  • Women who are building bada$$ communities
  • Inspirational BIPOC women in the outdoors

Female Founders, Thought Leaders, Community Builders, and Pioneers in the Outdoors

Anastasia Allison - Founder of Kula Cloth

Anastasia is the woman behind the first resuable, antimicrobial pee cloth of its kind. Leave No Trace by using Kula Cloth on your hiking and backpacking adventures.

Kula Cloth - Women In Business - International Women's Day

“As a former park ranger and backpacking instructor, I was frustrated to find discarded toilet paper in alpine environments. I started using a pee cloth as a zero waste alternative, and wondered if I could design one that was a legit piece of gear. I had no idea how to sew or how to start a company, but I believed it was possible. Kula Cloth® was born from that dream. The word Kula means 'community'. When you spot somebody else with a Kula, it's an instant connection. From the bottom of my heart, I hope that Kula is a small part of your best adventures.”

- Anastasia

Jaime Purinton - Co-founder of Hike It Off

Jaime co-created Hike It Off, a hiking magazine and clothing brand. After a serious injury on the trail that shattered three bones, Jaime realized just how much hiking means to her. While recovering, she collaborated with her co-founder to build the brand we know today as Hike It Off.

Jaime - Hike It Off - Influential Women In The Wilderness - Women's History Month

“Only the sun understands my fire, and the moon my peace. The mountains feel my wild, and the ocean my intensity. The stars see my light, and the night my darkness. The river knows my flow, and the trees my wisdom. I see myself in all of them.”

- Jaime

Amy Beck - President of Oboz Footwear

Amy is “Madame President” of the Bozeman-based company, Oboz Footwear. We love this brand for many reasons: they have women in executive roles, their products are high quality, and they plant a tree for every pair of shoes sold!

Amy Beck - Women In Business - Women's Month - Oboz Footwear

Amy was born a Hoosier but has called the Rockies home for the last 15+ years. As a board member of the Conservation Alliance, she is an avid outdoor enthusiast who loves animals, yoga, skiing, biking, hiking, traveling...and lots of live music.

Georgina Miranda - CEO of She Ventures

She Ventures is a society & culture website that focuses on abundance and wellbeing. They offer coaching, consulting, events & retreats, and more.

Women's History Month - International Women's Day - Influential Women In The Outdoors

"Fortaleza- strength of spirit (in Spanish). You are stronger than you know.

Maybe this shall become my word for 2021. Having Fortaleza doesn’t mean a lack in vulnerability. Quite the opposite. It’s ok to not be ok at times, but we can always connect with our inner power and spirit and rise above.

Honor your journey. Honor the Fortaleza that’s been brewing in you since you were born. Shift your mindset and energy to turn a new corner and take another step in this beautiful life we were gifted 💜"

- Georgina

 Michelle and Kenya - The Outdoor Journal Tour

An incredible movement founded by two BIPOC women and our friends, Michelle and Kenya, the Outdoor Journal Tour's mission is to empower women through mindfulness in the outdoors. 

The Outdoor Journal Tour - Women In Business - Women's Month

They encourage and facilitate introspection and connection. They believe that nature heals. The Outdoor Journal Tour is also the creator of an annual campaign #WeHikeToHeal. We are continually inspired by this amazing organization.

Emma "Grandma" Gatewood

The first woman to hike the entire Appalachian Trail, Emma Gatewood is a legend. She was a 67-year-old grandma when she completed the 2,168-mile trek (alone, mind you), thus earning her the nickname Grandma Gatewood.

Grandma Gatewood - First Woman To Hike The Appalachian Trail

As a domestic abuse survivor and a pioneer in the hiking world, we look up to her for her strength and resilience on and off the trail.

Karla Amador - Co-founder of the 52 Hike Challenge

Karla Amador - 52 Hike Challenge Founder - Women In Business

Meet Karla, co-founder and CEO of the #52HikeChallenge! Karla created our community in 2015, and we are endlessly inspired by her passion for the outdoors. As a Nature Spiritual Teacher, Karla leads with love and encourages our community to practice mindfulness on every hike.

As a kid, Karla grew up in a loving family that didn’t have the means for expensive activities. Instead, they took long walks as a way to bond. Exploring Griffith Park is one of her fondest memories from childhood.

As a teenage mom, Karla was faced with plenty of challenges, but she wouldn’t change any of it because her relationship with her son is that of mutual respect, trust, and love. He’s her best friend.

Before she co-founded the 52 Hike Challenge, Karla went through a difficult divorce that had her feeling lower than ever. After resolving to hike once a week for a year, her life completely turned around. She found joy, self-love and enlightenment through hiking.

Now Karla owns two companies and lives a life of complete adventure. As a digital nomad, she ventured to Mexico and quickly connected with the locals. Over the holidays, she created a campaign to raise funds for families in the local area and provided homes with $1,280 worth of food, shoes, and gifts for their kids.

At 52, we look up to Karla for her leadership, resilience, and kindness. She is an example of how a woman can overcome even the hardest of life’s challenges and move forward with grace.

We encourage you to connect with each of these women and learn about their brands through social media and their websites.

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