According to the Outdoor Industry Association, 46 percent of U.S. outdoor sports participants are women. And sometimes those women like to take trips with other women, where they can learn, enjoy, and challenge themselves in the company of other ladies who rip. Here are some of our favorite opportunities.
Alpine Finishing School
Selkirk Backcountry Lodge, British Columbia
For experienced backcountry skiers and splitboarders, this weeklong mountaineering skills course is taught by ACMG ski guide Kate Devine and held each April at a backcountry lodge in British Columbia. Put on by the nonprofit organization She Jumps, the camp will teach you glacier travel, crevasse rescue, route finding, orienteering, avalanche safety, and more, surrounded by gals with the same high-alpine objectives as you. From $2,300.
Run Wild Retreats
Elinor Fish, an ultrarunner with a focus on mindful running, leads women’s trail-running retreats around the world. This summer, she’s offering a weeklong hut-to-hut running trip in Iceland. You’ll learn how to train smarter, recover more fully, and build a running routine that actually fits into your busy life. This is basically a sweet vacation—including wellness workshops, communal Scandinavian dinners, and geothermal lagoons—that happens to include beautiful daily trail runs. From $4,800.
California, Oregon, and New Hampshire
This summer, you can join REI on all-women trips (dubbed the Outessa Series) to places like Kirkwood, California; Mount Hood, Oregon; or Waterville Valley, New Hampshire. You’ll spend a three-day weekend hiking, mountain biking, rock climbing, and stand-up paddleboarding. A chef whips up fresh meals on site, and you can opt for DIY camping or splurge to have a camp host set up a deluxe tent for you. From $749.
Chicks with Picks
In April, Chicks with Picks is leading a new weeklong rock climbing trip to the Greek island of Kalymnos. You’ll scale limestone cliffs hanging over the Aegean Sea and receive guiding and instruction from world-class female climbers. The eight-day trip includes six days of guided climbing geared toward climbers of all levels. Not up for an international trip? Chicks with Picks also leads trips to domestic locales like Utah, Grand Teton National Park, and Kentucky’s Red River Gorge. From $1,999.
Ladies All Ride
Ladies All Ride brings together female mountain bikers of all levels for weekend retreats at nine locations around the country, including Bend, Oregon; Big Sky, Montana; Sedona, Arizona; and Brevard, North Carolina. You’ll start with skills clinics from pro mountain biker and All Ride founder Lindsey Richter to learn tips like cornering and body positioning, and then you’ll hit the singletrack for group rides. From $375.
Surf Diva Surf School
La Jolla, California
For newbies, San Diego’s Surf Diva Surf School offers two-day women’s surf camps every weekend year-round at the beginner-friendly break off La Jolla Shores Beach. You’ll get board rental, pro instruction, and easy-to-learn tips that’ll have you catching your first waves in no time. For intermediate surfers looking to up their game, the school also offers five-day and overnight camps for more in-depth instruction. From $165.