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Solo Hiking Confidence:
How To Get It

Solo hiking confidence: Is it something a woman is born with?

Or is it something that can be learned?

In my mind, it's a bit of both.

If you were lucky enough to be raised by confident adults who did not micromanage your behavior, confidence is probably one of many positive traits you absorbed.

Your attitude toward solo hiking is probably something like this:

"Take off on a solo hike? Sure! Nothing is holding me back!"

But if you had timid parents, or were not taken into the outdoors regularly, maybe it's something you have to learn. And you can!

Solo trail confidence implies a complete and total trust in

  • your hiking skills,
  • background knowledge,
  • decision making ability, and
  • physical limits.

It's mental, physical, and for some women, spiritual strength all rolled into one.

Which should give every female hiker something to think about: how and where do I get the skills to build solo hiking confidence?

Glad you asked!

In no particular order, here's a list of where to turn to get your solo hiking confidence oozing from every pore, right along with your perspiration.

   Solo Hiking Confidence Checklist:
Start with some book smarts

The internet is crawling with sites dedicated to hiking.

A small corner is devoted to solo hiking, aimed at female hikers.

And even fewer are give solid information without generating or reinforcing fear.

Your key words for searching for solo hiking information could include:

Are you getting the idea that you'll have to do meticulous and extensive planning if you plan to go solo?

Membership organizations
have solo hiking tips

Sadly, there are no solo hiker groups (that would be an oxymoron, no?)

But there are hiking groups which run classes, sponsor hiking events, and create a "can do" environment for those who want to expand their hiking knowledge base.

Take a look at Washington Trails Association's stance on solo hiking.

American Hiking Assocation can also get you started on thinking about building trail smarts.

National Outdoor Leadership School is also worth a look, but be prepared to invest a lot of time into their intensive coursework.

Home study and on line courses

I am a fervent believer in the do-it-yourself approach.

What better way to learn to identify trees than to get out there, field guide in hand, and LOOK at trees? (or what have you: flowers, insects, snakes, butterflies....).

I've stumbled across a few pretty cool "schools" for those of us who love to learn, and don't need a classroom or structured setting.

Self-mentoring, I guess you'd call it.

I've developed a few of my own courses, based on my trail time and classroom experience.

Check them out here!

And I'd love to receive your recommendations for courses you'd love to take.

Personalized mentoring
sound good?

I would love to mentor you virtually, or in person if you live in Western Washington, as you gain solo trail confidence.

I can design a personalized curriculum for you, after we have a conversation about what exactly you're looking for.

And I'll be the trusted trail buddy who designs assignments & asks for proof that you did them, which will give you confidence in your ability to tackle solo hiking.

Why would I do this?

Because as I was passing through my teens and twenties, women did that for me. My Girl Scout leaders, camp counselors, and family friends challenged me to take those first steps into the big, wide unknown, and to keep going.

They gave me feedback. They challenged me to get better every time I went out.

And now that I'm an old trail dog, it's time to give back.

So use the box below to contact me and we can set up a "Going Solo" experience, just for you!

All of those gorgeous hiking trails are waiting for your boot prints.

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Solo Hiking Confidence

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