Nervous new solo backpacker
I'm an avid day-hiker, who recently decided to make the jump to backpacking and I'm planni...Read more
I've moved quite a bit throughout my adult life and one of the hardest things to do when starting in a new place is finding like minded women interested in the same activities as yourself. I've used platforms like Meetup and Facebook groups to do this in the past. What are some of the ways you have found other women active in the outdoors?
I would love to see some responses to this. I've tried to use MeetUp, but often find that groups of friends attend those hikes and usually keep to themselves. I've been going back and forth on joining an upcoming REI women's trip.
I attended an REI backpacking class for women and met a room full of like minded women. There were people exchanging contact information at the end of the class. Maybe sign up for an upcoming class that is interesting to you?
I too have the same struggle, on top of that I am attempting to get into a new activity. I tried to sign up for an REI Women Only class and the class was cancelled due to lack of interest. I'll follow this thread to see if anyone has an anser to our question!
Man, this is so hard! And so common, sadly. I've been lucky to meet some cool ladies through my gym (I go to a crossfit gym, one which seems to have a lot of crossover with outdoor-adventure types in this city), and I have a number of cool coworkers. But without those connections, I would never meet any cool like-minded ladies! But the ladies' classes at REI or beginner classes with outdoor clubs or activity-specific groups sound like a great way to go! Also a lot of times local clothing shops or yoga studios (think Lululemon or other athleisure companies) will also host 'ladies night' events. It may be a marketing ploy and not all of those women who show up are going to fit the mold you're looking for, but probably some of them will, and they'll probably be there for the same reason as you! but stick with REi for the coolest crowd if possible. 😉
I've found that it takes a number of approaches to build a good network. I often attend "Partner meetup nights" at the climbing gym and have made some of my best gal friends that way. I also like events like the Outbound's "Pursuit" for meeting like-minded outdoorsy folk - and having a blast. Highly recommend signing up for classes (REI courses are great) and if you really want to meet more people fast, Bumble has a "BFF" function (as well as a networking one) for making new friends.
Hi @amsparks ! As someone with a similar dilemma and moved many times in my 20s and 30s what I’ve found that works really well is to find groups of active people or people who love the outdoors. What I mean by that is volunteer to help a non-profit who stewards an outdoor area. While you volunteer and clean up the area, you chat with other volunteers. It’s awesome and a great way to meet other people who love the outdoors! I’ve found Camber Outdoors is a great networking group for women who work in the outdoors, and I’ve met some of my best friends through going to their events. Look for any group/gathering/event that not necessarily the activity you’re trying to do, and you’ll find locals who care about the outdoors and that area. It takes time but is totally doable! Best of luck!
Soooo...when I first started reading this, I wasn't aware that it was directed towards women. I'm not a woman, but I think this situation applies equally to everyone, and, even people who have lived in a given area for some time have experienced difficulties in finding like-minded people. I hope no one minds my input.
I have found a great deal of camaraderie by participating in local Parks & Rec adult co-ed sports leagues. You don't have to be a star athlete to join. I've played flag football, kickball, dodgeball, volleyball, and disc-golf, and made some really good friends through those programs. In fact, my hiking group is mostly comprised of friends I've met that way.
As mentioned by @REI-AliciaS, trail volunteer opportunities are great! Search your local area for Trail or Nature Conservancies, and check their events calendars.
Don't overlook activities sponsored by nearby bars and restaurants. A brew-pub local to me, situated right along a hiking/biking rail trail holds a yoga class on their grounds every weekend. It's also co-ed, but is mostly attended by women. They also sponsor trail events periodically. There may be something similar in your area.
I certainly understand and respect your desire to find other women with similar interests, but keep an open mind and try not to limit yourself to "women-only" activities and events to find those new companions.
Good luck and have fun !!